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Packers Run Over Cowboys, 28-7

Eddie Lacy

The Packers welcomed Eddie Lacy back this week, and not the guy who looked hesitant and slow and suffered from fumbilitist for most this season. No, they got back the Easy Eddie Lacy who moved piles and broke arm tackles all game long.

Their passing offense once again in neutral, the Packers ultimately rode Lacy, James Starks, and the offensive line to 233 yards rushing and a 28-7 win over the punchless Dallas Cowboys.

Next week will be a better indication whether the Packers were fortunate to have Mike McCarthy back as a play-caller or McCarthy was fortunate that rainy conditions heavily suggested he run the ball and stick with it.

We did see a less predictable offense that had the audacity to run a quarterback keeper at the goal line, with no success, and a fake end around to Randall Cobb screen to James Starks that caught the Cowboys completely by surprise and resulted in a walk in touchdown. Unfortunately, McCarthy also perhaps outthought himself when he decided to try a series featuring Cobb in the backfield, which put his two most productive players for the night- Starks and Lacy- on the bench for a drive that predictably ended in a punt.

Regardless of the extra razzle-dazzle, McCarthy was no more successful getting the Packer passing game going than Tom Clements has been. Aaron Rodgers finished with a similar stat line as what he’s been doing all season- 22/35 for 218 yards and 2 TDs with no picks. The Packers had no explosive plays via the pass with one 20+ yard pass play all game, which was a 24 yard catch on a screen play to Eddie Lacy.

I said before the game that even though the Cowboys are missing their starting quarterback while the Packers have their 2-time MVP starting, these two teams are playing similar ball, and we saw that through most the first three quarters. Both teams could run the ball some, but whenever a run play was stuffed or a third and short came up, both offenses typically came up empty. These are the two worst teams at 3rd and 1 in the league, which means they can’t run to pick it up, and when you combine that with a passing game unable to make plays, many punts are sure to follow.

Fortunately for the Packers, besides going brain dead on two long runs by Dallas, the Packer defense held up better and longer against the Dallas offense. Finally, the Cowboys’ athletic but undersized defensive line started to cave. By the Packers’ final two drives, their offensive line was completely dominating the line of scrimmage, allowing the two big backs to run roughshod over the Dallas defense.

James Starks had the backbreaker with a 30 yard touchdown run on a draw on 2nd and 25, and then Eddie Lacy finished it by barreling his way for a score under three minutes. Those two scores turned a defensive battle that was 14-7 with five minutes left in the game to a 28-7 whipping at the final gun.

The Packer defense held up despite losing Sam Shields to a concussion, according to the Packers, early in the second quarter. That put Damarious Randall on Dez Bryant for the remainder, and in what was another highlight to a stellar rookie season, Bryant had zero catches for the rest of the game. Micah Hyde also had a big game with several tackles that kept receivers just short of first downs.

In the end, the Packer offense just rode it out until Lacy and Starks got it going to put the game away. With the win, the Packers improved to 9-4 and are back alone on top the division. Probably most importantly, it got the Packers back on track at home, ending their horrific two game losing streak there, which will live in infamy.

With the win, the Packers have guaranteed that at worst, the season finale against the Vikings will give them a shot to win the division. Hopefully, the Packers won’t rely on that.

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Shawn

Shawn Neuser attended UWGB and lives and works in Green Bay. He enjoys long walks on the beach and being intimate with game film.

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50 Comments

  1. SIM December 13, 2015

    This wasn’t going to be a huge passing night with the slippery wet ball that them boys kept letting bryant drop. Personally, I found the challenge of dez’s non-catch to be very fitting sign that maybe things may return to normal going forward. However, I must agree with Monty that we need to see how the pack plays in Oakland to see what effect mm calling plays is really going to have. I hope a big one. If nothing else the change in atmosphere and these two wins may be a start of a streak that can lead us deep in the playoffs. We’ll likely be playing the Vikings in week 17 and in the wild card series save a complete breakdown by AZ or the seahawks. I dread meeting Seattle the way they are playing now.

    1. icebowl December 13, 2015

      R-E-L-A-X ….

  2. gort December 13, 2015

    I don’t like the “razzle dazzle” to put Cobb in the backfield for a whole series. That is too much of a cutesy / trick play crap and should be reserved for a single play occasionally, not a 3 and out series in a close game. I was very impressed with Janis on punt coverage.

    Also, in Gort’s opinion, the Dez Bryant play last year was a catch. The Dez play today was close, but looked incomplete.

  3. PackAttack December 13, 2015

    Good Win. A win’s a win.

    BUT…………

    Dallas is ranked near dead last in the NFL in stopping the run (25th overall to be exact) so the 223 rushing yards by Lacy & Starks shouldn’t surprise anyone who’s watched Dallas front four all year — they’re embarrassingly bad, Dallas is just plain bad overall. They gave up 173 rushing yards to Philly back in Week 9 and Philly might have the most inefficient run offense in NFL history considering their personnel. Dallas is a fucking joke, this shouldn’t even have been a game! A good team absolutely crushes Dallas.

    If anyone thinks Green Bay can “get by” with Lacy & Starks carrying load the rest of the way you probably should check yourself into a mental institution. Fat McCarthy takes over play calling duties (didn’t he also admit to having a big influence on Tom Clements play selection?) and what exactly did he change? Green Bay ran the ball well against Chicago too and what was that end result? You watch the game today and the passing attack — which MUST be efficient if this team wants to make a deep run in a very weak NFC — is still broken. STILL there’s essentially ZERO creativity on offense, no crossing routes, no backside slants, not much separation from the flanker — a 62% completion rate on 35 passes from the best QB in football? How the hell is this team going to win games throwing the ball like this?

    This season is on par to be Rodgers worst season as a pro. His completion percentage is down almost 6-8 points from where it should be. His QBR is at an all time low. He isn’t throwing for big yards — and I have hard time believing this is all because Jordy is out. You have a two-time NFL MVP under center with the best arm and overall tools in the game and the numbers he’s throwing up are god awful pathetic. And it’s on McCarthy, not Tom Clements. If Cam Newton and Tom Brady can produce big results with players like Brandon LaFell, Danny Amendola and Devin Funchess —- my god imagine what Randall Cobb would do in New England’s offense? Where was Richard Rodgers this week? Everytime McCarthy runs a screen to Lacy or Starks it works — then Fat Mike doesn’t run it again?

    This whole season has been a poorly managed, poorly executed fumblefuck from McCarthy. He’s to blame. And yes — a win is a win — congrats. But these problems have been the Packers achilles heel ALL SEASON. Last week it was glazed over b/c Rodgers 61 yard hail mary — this week Lacy & Starks bailed out the offense. What happens when the Packers actually need their passing attack to advance in the post-season (which they will), when their run games gets shut down (which it will). Then all of these questions become much bigger and much more important.

    Fix the fucking passing game. Holy shit.

    1. Andy Pants December 13, 2015

      PackAttack, what do you like about the Green Bay Packers, if anything?

      Nice meltdown, by the way.

      1. John December 14, 2015

        Pack attack you convinced me you were an idiot in the first couple of sentences. No need to bore us all beyond that!

    2. Brad December 14, 2015

      28-7 is a big win. If the run is working, why go away from it (just to prove you can pass)? This is why McCarthy is a head coach, and you are just a whiner on the internet.

  4. Phatgzus December 13, 2015

    You must be the life of the party at funerals. Dallas has a good defensive backfield and LB corps and the Packers O essentially dominated them in the first half. They moved the ball well for most of the 2nd half as well. If they could convert more on third and short this game would’ve been over with a quarter left to play, that is the only major drawback of the O’s performance today.

    FYI, Funchess was a high draft pick and Newton has the beat run game in the NFL. Amendola is the Pats’ 4th receiving option and he’s one of the most talented 3 WRs in the NFL-injuries have greatly affected his career. Furthermore the Golden Boy hasn’t exactly been tearing it up since Gronk and Edelman went down (most of his yards and 2 TDs vs. The Iggles came in what the casual fan would call “garbage time”).

  5. Phatgzus December 13, 2015

    Eddie Lacy is SOOOOOOOOOOOO phat!

    1. PF4L December 13, 2015

      Positively Hot And Tempting? Hmmm….

  6. TyKo Steamboat December 13, 2015

    The McCarthy hating Packer fans need to take a loooong look around the league…

    Then realize how good we got it…
    Go Pack

    1. PackAttack December 13, 2015

      Bill Belichick 13 Years – Tom Brady – 2 Time MVP = 4 Super Bowls (been to 6 Super Bowls)

      Mike McCarthy 8 Years – Aaron Rodgers – 2 Time MVP = 1 Super Bowl (been to 1 Super Bowl)

      Best QB in the NFL by far, not even close and in 8 years Fat Mac has been to 1 Super Bowl (it’ll be 9 after this year) 1 fucking year out of 9 with Aaron Rodgers in his prime and you can’t even sniff multiple Super Bowls? And we have it good? How? Eli fucking Manning has been to more Super Bowls than Aaron Rodgers and Fat McCarthy!

      1. Shawn December 13, 2015

        HAHAHAHA….

        When you have to compare McCarthy to Bellichick to make him look bad, then you have inadvertently made the opposite point of what you meant to make.

        1. icebowl December 13, 2015

          The comparison to Eli Manning is the killer ….

          1. Shawn December 13, 2015

            Eli Manning outplayed Rodgers to get to one of those Super Bowls. If Rodgers had outplayed Manning, those numbers would be reversed. Or if Rodgers had played a good game against Seattle, it would at least be a tie.

          2. PF4L December 13, 2015

            Because it only takes 1 player to get to, and win a SuperBowl.

            I learn so much in here.

            Thank you.

        2. John December 14, 2015

          Pack, please go find another team Pfew you are full of your self

      2. Andy Pants December 13, 2015

        There it is! “MOAR SUPER BOWLZES! Aaron Rodgers prime is for to being wasted! Er, choking in the Playoffs! One and dun! Der fat coach is fat! Tom Brady and Patriots are better!”

        Always fall back to the one or two teams who have had a better or comparable run over the past decade to demonstrate, irrefutably, that the Packers are a waste, even though 29 other teams wish they were the Packers. PackAttack can’t see the forest because all of the fucking trees are in the way.

        1. Fritz December 14, 2015

          Agreed. But so far we are better in the “class act” dept. God will reward us for that. History will vindicate. Lombardi will never turn over in his grave and stop smiling down on us, a chuckle at times like at the end of the Motown Miracle. This wonderful sportsman AR 1 (and RR 2) and the rest of the class act that TT and MM have put together will write the next chapter in the chronicles of the greatest sports club in world history.

  7. Calico December 13, 2015

    Janis is so good breaking free at line of scrimmage on punt coverage, can’t he he do the same as a receiver against man coverage? What are we missing?

    1. Andy Pants December 13, 2015

      Calico, it seems, from what I’m hearing, that he is still not consistently running his routes correctly in practice. He showed this in the game last week against the Lions when he was given a chance. He burned by the defender, lost the ball in the air, slowed his speed down, and caused the ball to be overthrown.

      He is a freak on special teams though.

  8. Packer Bob December 13, 2015

    You can debate whether the rule book needs to be rewritten but let’s stop debating the actual catch. It wasn’t according to the rules. Your opinion does not matter.

  9. Cheese December 13, 2015

    Their short yard conversion rate is horrible. At least seeing the offense didn’t feel like watching paint dry, at moments anyway. One of the announcers mentioned that Abberderis was in the game while Adams was on the sideline. Maybe the coaching staff is starting to realize Adams sucks balls.

  10. PF4L December 13, 2015

    Lacy and Starks did a nice job, no disputing that. But can someone, anyone, give the 0 line some credit, at least in the run game? Those were big holes the 0 line opened up that allowed both of these guys to reach the 2nd level. I’m not even a fan of this 0 line, but fuck, without them showing up, this may have been a loss.

    1. Fritz December 14, 2015

      Why not start by calling them the O line vice the zero line?

      (0 = O NOT!)

      1. PF4L December 14, 2015

        Maybe someday Fritz, will contribute something football related if he ever learns the game. In the meantime, we’ll have to just suffer through him being the grammar cop.

        1. Fritz fm WI December 14, 2015

          i know this ain’t saying much, but i think i know more about pro football than that reptile Al Michaels, or that toad Mike Tirico…

        2. ay hombre December 14, 2015

          Agreed. Fritz is the worst. He makes me miss E. Wolf.

          1. Fritz fm WI December 14, 2015

            well, i was honored and proud to receive the crown, esp. from the likes of you, but then i happened across the following post:

            “If GB plays the Seahawks in the playoffs, they will lose. END OF STORY.” – Al Hombre, on TP 12/04/15.

          2. Shawn December 14, 2015

            Fritz is not even close to the worst, nor is E Wolf. They are Packer fans at least.

  11. Packer Bob December 13, 2015

    Heh, good luck with that. The only thing you will find here is fans who quit on there team when the going gets tough. Just imagine how they’ll feel when the Packers stop winning the division and making the playoffs every single year.

    1. icebowl December 13, 2015

      Been there – that was the 80’s !
      Enjoying each and every win as they happen.
      It’s been a great ride razzing Bears fans at work for 20 years !

    2. Andy Pants December 13, 2015

      Packer Bob, I was about 7 or 8 when Favre showed up, so I’ve known nothing but Packers success my whole life. I’m guessing most of these angry troll Packer “fans” are my age or younger, and they are completely spoiled and unable to place their unrealistic expectations into any form of rational context. They are prisoners of the moment, and when the moment truly gets bad, they’re probably going to be a threat to their own safety.

  12. Phatgzus December 13, 2015

    The o-line absolutely dominated the LoS all game, they looked like they were in last year’s form. They started the first 5-6 games of the season pretty well but then were pretty bad until Favre’s Jersey retirement Jamboree and the Meltdown in Motown where they were effective in the run and pass games for the respective games. Hopefully they’ll play like they did today for the rest of the season.

    1. icebowl December 13, 2015

      Agreed Phat-g…
      … and also agree with your comment re: Lacy…
      That is one powerful running cat

  13. Phatgzus December 13, 2015

    And how about A-Rodg breaking the tackle of a limbacker (or maybe it was even a lineman) to get a critical 33rd-and-long conversion. It’s not everyday you see QBs breaking tackles, even as a Panther fan. That ranks up there with one of my favorite Packer QB runs, not far behind Tolzien’s spin on Guiyon, and Rodgers’ juke of Urlacher.

  14. Big Gay Clay December 13, 2015

    Great win but why the fuck do we always run out of shotgun when we are on the opponents goal line? That’s how we got stopped on 4&1. A trick roll out play with ARod on 3rd down and a QB sneak on 4th down. Why didn’t we have Lacy just pound it in out of a heavy set? The buffoonery.

  15. SC Packfan December 14, 2015

    One thing I noticed, was the player interaction, AROD complementing players, defense gelling together, Starks and Lacey congratulating each other. My point is they were playing with leadership, purpose and having fun again.

    1. Zwoeger December 14, 2015

      I noticed that to, aspecially from rodgers

  16. Vano Lucas December 14, 2015

    For whatever reason, our receivers still can’t get separation downfield. This mystifies me. Is it route running? Is it simply getting Rodgers comfortable with this group of wideouts? I admit I don’t know, but every pass that isn’t a swing or a dink seems to be thrown into very tight coverage. Could the absence of Nelson be so game-changing?

  17. Deepsky December 14, 2015

    I think the key to the game was targeting Adams only 3 times.

  18. PF4L December 14, 2015

    Monty….We’re gonna need a new article about the Packers signing Daniels…chop chop.

  19. xlvordie December 14, 2015

    I thought abberderis earned more time? He got 3 whole plays.
    Adams continues to get the benefit of doubt despite it being week 14 and still having no break through

    1. PF4L December 14, 2015

      I also think Janis deserves more plays, i don’t give a shit if his route running isn’t up to someone’s standards, good things usually happen when he’s on the field.

      Except for screen passes, it seems we don’t get any yards after the catch anymore, and am i missing something, or do we not run slant routes at all? Be nice to see someone catch a ball in stride vs. catching and immediately going down.

  20. PF4L December 14, 2015

    Although Lacy is getting all the print..Hats off to J. Starks..11 rushes, 71 yards for 6.5ypc 1 rushing td. Also 4 catches for 32 yards, including a receiving td.

    Starks was responsible for 1/2 the Packers point total.

  21. Calico December 14, 2015

    Thanks Andy. That makes sense then. On punt coverage, once he blows by the jammers, there is nothing left to do but rocket toward the returner. No brain required.

  22. Zwoeger December 14, 2015

    ST was always late with punts, Janis never. Loved it.

    1. David December 14, 2015

      Yeah… the punter is greeted with “Hi… going somewhere??” immediately.

      1. David December 14, 2015

        ick Punt Returner!

  23. ay hombre December 14, 2015

    One thing I’ll say is McCarthy managed to do something he’s failed at many times in his career previously. He stuck with the run and finished with it when it became apparent the passing game wasn’t getting it done.

    Maybe this is a slight change in philosophy (or common sense) where the Packers might start attacking weakness rather than “running our stuff” regardless the strengths or weaknesses of the opponent.

    I kinda doubt it…but props to MM for last night anyway.