Packers Were There, But Fall To Patriots 31-17

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Tom Brady touchdown

The Green Bay Packers faced one of the best teams in the league for the second week in a row. For the second week in a row, a couple major mistakes cost them a chance to win. In the end, they fell to the New England Patriots 31-17.

It may look like a blowout, but the Packers had their opportunities.

The game turned when running back Aaron Jones fumbled at the Patriots’ 26 while the Packers were driving for what would have been the go-ahead score. The game was 17-17 at the time.

On the ensuing drive, Tom Brady led the Patriots down the field for a touchdown. That drive was buoyed by a 37-yard catch and run by Julian Edelman. James White scored three plays later.

Then came the touchdown that sealed it. After a Packers punt, Brady hit Josh Gordon for a 55-yard touchdown after pretty much everyone on the Packers’ defense bit on a fake screen pass.

Game over.

To go from having a chance to take the lead on the Patriots in Foxboro to being down one and then two touchdowns had to be crushing. The Packers couldn’t muster anything the rest of the way.

Injuries were a big story for both teams in this game. The Patriots came in without No. 1 running back Sony Michel and tight end Rob Gronkowski. The Packers came in without receiver Geronimo Allison, but then lost right tackle Bryan Bulaga, safety Kentrell Brice and, briefly, inside linebacker Blake Martinez. Safety Jermaine Whitehead was also tossed for retaliating against Patriots center David Andrews.

Whitehead didn’t punch Andrews. He slapped him on the helmet with an open hand. Technically, that isn’t cause for ejection. It’s cause for a penalty, which was called, but Whitehead shouldn’t have been thrown out of the game.

The Patriots scored three plays later.

The Patriots also benefitted from a questionable roughing the kicker penalty in the third quarter. Tight end Robert Tonyan ran into Patriots punter Ryan Allen on a 4th-and-21. It was called roughing, a 15-yard penalty. It should have been called running into the kicker, a 5-yard penalty. It would have ended the Patriots drive there and given the Packers decent field position.

The Patriots ended up punting anyway, but they got four more plays and a little better field position.

Much like last week, the Packers’ defense did almost enough to win the game. Other than the blown coverage on Gordon that led to his touchdown, it was a solid effort against an all-time great quarterback. Especially when you consider they were undermanned.

The Packers’ offense couldn’t quite keep up, though.

It wouldn’t be a stretch to say the Packers aren’t far off. Of course, the fact of the matter is the Packers are now a sub-.500 team.


About The Author

Mordecai is a writer living in Los Angeles. He primarily writes screenplays, but also does crap like this because GREEN BAY PACKERS, baby!

63 Comments on "Packers Were There, But Fall To Patriots 31-17"

  1. TyKo Steamboat

    Quick takes:

    -Opening kickoff – again we can’t kick a touchback… result = return to the 41 for excellent field position. When will we ever finally kick a touchback? I thought maybe that Kaser guy would boom a kickoff or something…
    -More terrible special teams play. A roughing the kicker penalty?… wow
    -Bulaga is a chinadoll … a real pussy. A big contract that can’t finish a game. What a wimp! Does he ever seriously finish a game anymore?
    – Another perfectly timed fumble … why does our team always seem to cough-it-up in big games at the worst possible moments but we can’t ever force them ourselves? I can already see a costly fumble coming at Minny in 2 weeks from a rookie receiver or one of our backs… is there anything more maddening than a fumble? I hate the effen fumbles. Have some discipline already
    -Defense actually played well when the officials weren’t penalizing us on BS calls too
    -McCarthy’s presser was an all-timer.

    • PackAttack

      -More terrible special teams play. A roughing the kicker penalty?… wow
      ———-
      Coaching. Coaching. Coaching. It’s bad all around. Too many men on the field. Delay of game penalties. No discipline on offense or defense. The Mike McCarthy era is just about at an end

    • icebowl

      You forgot they gave NE an extra 5 on opening KO because some dumbass starting running before the kick….
      What a joke.
      Offense has gone from explosive to implosive.
      D playing with heart – Pettine had some good stuff going keeping NE off balance for a while – Rooks stepped up to the task – playing with heart and hunger while veterans aren’t doing shit.

      Insult to injury was seeing Bears and Queens both win today. I see GB barely beating Dolphins next week and then getting trounced in Seattle to eliminate all hopes for post season. I could easily see them going 3-5 for rest of season.

      …… which is what we’ve all been kinda waiting for – no more lame excuses that they made playoffs to avoid making huge changes in coaching – gotta grab OC McDaniel from NE at end of season to replace MM.

      • Savage57

        McDamiel’s not going anywhere. He’s the crown prince, heir to the most desired NFL throne in the early 21st century.

        • PF4L

          It won’t be that desirable when Brady is gone shortly. A good football man would try to go after McDaniels. So i doubt Murphy gives it a thought.

  2. Bob

    It hurts to see this game but when all is said and done maybe just maybe we can get someone in to be head coach. McCarthy’s tenure in Green Bay needs to end this year. AS we all know Rodgers doesn’t have to many seasons left in the tank.

  3. PackAttack

    The Green Bay Packers are finished in 2018. This team has no business of competing in the playoffs — they are so bad in so many areas it’s time to make some long overdue changes.

    After these last few weeks it’s become very apparent that the Mike McCarthy era in Green Bay is actually going to be finished. It’s no longer a matter of if but when he’ll be fired. He’s done, there’s absolutely no doubt.

    The offense has been stale, and predictable for years, but at this point it’s almost comically bad. Screens to Randall Cobb, draw plays with Jamaal Williams? There’s zero creativity and nothing dynamic to what’s being called unless Rodgers pulls some ridiculous play out of his ass. Joe Philbin coming back to Green Bay has done nothing, the offense has actually regressed from ’17-to-’18 (when Rodgers was healthy). You can’t have the highest paid QB in the league and be this incompetent and unproductive on offense.

    Can we please move on from Randall Cobb, he’s absolutely terrible in every way. What does he do? He’s not fast, he’s not quick (laterally or first-step), he can’t jump, his catch radius is non-existent, he can’t make plays. It’s over for Cobb in Green Bay and thus his NFL career —- he’ll never succeed anywhere else, he’s a cut on 90% of NFL rosters.

    MVS is going to be good. Really, really good. Jaire Alexander and Blake Martinez are building blocks on defense — both are playmakers and play like they give a shit.

    This whole “run the football more argument” is getting almost sickening to listen to. First off, this team isn’t in a position to “run the football” when they never play with a lead, second of all when the Packers actually do run the football, granted their successful “at times” but especially in critical down and distance situations the running game magically becomes less effective and becomes very easy to key on (GB success rate in the 2nd Half of games in 2018 is 2.8 yards per/carry when running the FB — 3rd worst in the NFL). The play calling on these runs are as uncreative as the rest of the offense is: draws/HB dives/gut and between the tackle runs are pointless — they waste time, they put the offense in holes and very rarely do they keep defenses honest from not playing the pass against, you don’t think defenses would rather have you run at them with Williams and Jones than have Rodgers throw on them 50+ times per/game —- Fuck why wouldn’t they? Furthermore, coming into tonight’s game Rodgers wasn’t even in Top 15 in the LEAGUE in pass attempts, there’s 2 QB’s who’ve thrown almost 100 more times! Your paying Rodgers more money than anyone else in the league — you aren’t going to split run and pass 50/50 especially with this play calling and the clowns running the football. Rodgers two best game this season were when he threw 45+ times (both 400 yard passing games) and since then he hasn’t topped 300 yards these last two weeks. Pathetic.

    This team is bad in so many ways but let’s move on from Bryan Bulaga, Clay Matthews and Nick Perry this off-season. Bad contracts, poor performance and is Bulaga’s case he can’t stay healthy — ever.

    Bring in Josh McDaniels next year — someone with some creativity on offense, someone young who isn’t afraid to bring 21st century football into Green Bay.

    • TyKo Steamboat

      Right about Martinez & Alexander. Throw Kenny Clark into the mix too. Pay him when the time comes

      week 3 – Cobb fumbles at Washington
      week 5 – Crosby shirts the bed
      week 8 – Montgomery fumbles at LA
      week 9 – Jones fumbles against Pats

    • Kato

      Um where else do you run the football besides between the tackles? Off tackle? There really aren’t a lot of options on where you run the ball. It comes down to blocking and winning one on one matchups.

  4. Adam

    All I needed to see was the HB dive call, in our own end zone just like last week, to the RIGHT side of the line that had two weak-ass substitutes playing. It worked, but if that didn’t scream “I never learn my lesson” in dumbfuck playcalling, I dunno what does.

    McCarthy is done. Fire his ass.

    • Adam

      Also, two plays later on third down you send Cobb deep to beat 1-on-1 coverage. When the fuck was the last time Cobb ever won a 1-on-1 matchup deep. Whothefuckknows how low long it’s been? I can’t recall. It’s been that long.

      I can recall MVS beating that same matchup earlier in the game. But no, don’t exploit that matchup ever again.

    • Cheese

      They were on the 1-yard line and I was thinking to myself, watch McCarthy run it up the middle like an idiot. And guess what they did?? They got 3 yards max but still a dumbfuck call, and still ended up going three and out with NE getting great field position.

  5. PF4L

    Did the blown coverage lead to Gordon’s TD, or was it a piss ass poor tackling effort by T Willy?

    As far as Whiteheads ejection and Tonyan’s penalty on the kicker, you are 100% correct. But at the same time, they were still penalty’s, don’t leave it up to the refs. Whitehead bitch slapped Andrews across his facemask, it looked like a bitch move after Andrews gave him a little shove. Whitehead has to keep his head in the game, it seems he always does something every week to hurt this team, i’ve had it with that clown.

    Finally, here we go again with the defense shit talk.
    “-Defense actually played well when the officials weren’t penalizing us on BS calls too”

    In whose world, is giving up 433 yards and 31 points playing well? Same stupid shit talk as last week.

    Two weeks of giving up 849 yards and 30 ppg, and that gets praise? Do you really expect to go play the Rams and Patriots at their stadium and beat those teams with those numbers?

    Maybe your new to watching the NFL Mordi, but listen….that isn’t very good.

    You’re Welcome.

    • Disposableh3ro

      Spot on assessment of the D. I do believe Tramon played better than C-D would have. Breeland was awful, not sure if that was rust or if he is shit. Out coached on both sides of the ball in back to back weeks not to mention the shit show that is special teams.

      • PF4L

        Yea, i’m gonna give Breeland the benefit of the doubt as far as rust. The thing you saw was that he was aggressive and went after it, more than i can say for some of the veterans. Whitehead didn’t need to bitch slap Andrews across the face, he should have done it to T Willy after that High School attempt of a tackle on Gordon.

        5 million dollars for that, wtf?

  6. Adam

    Tonight’s most interesting post game stat/tweet:

    Andy Herman
    @SconnieSports
    The Packers in their last 10 games started by Aaron Rodgers: 3-6-1.
    The Packers in 10 games with Brett Hundley: 3-7.

    The Packers are a 1/2 game better with Rodgers.

    Five of the last 7 wins with Rodgers, needed miraculous Rodgers’ comebacks.

    • PF4L

      It’s a work in progress my man.

      Rodgers threw so many passes behind the line of scrimmage in the first quarter, i had to double check and make sure #7 wasn’t under center.

    • KILLER

      Adam, that really is an amazing stat share.

      Not to tread too heavy on you guys’ golden cow but he seriously is the most overrated QB ever. Name one other QB who gets mentioned as a possible GOAT who is as overrated as Rodgers. Don’t come at me with Troy Aikman. He is way overrated and has no business in the HOF but no one talks of him as a GOAT.

      Rodgers’ numbers are inflated and plumped up by automatic completions at or near the line of scrimmage and by tons of easy short TD throws when it easily and should have been run into the end zone. Take TDs out of the equation and YAC (for both Rodgers and all the other QBs) and Rodgers’ career numbers are pedestrian at best.

      He does it with one of the best LTs protecting his blind side. He does it with a sour attitude. He does it with snide arrogance.

      • PF4L

        He does it with 2MVP’s

        He does it with the highest passer rating in NFL history (season and career).

        He does it with a Super Bowl MVP

        Most importantly, he does it with a Super Bowl ring. One more than the queens have in the history of their losing franchise.

  7. Sal

    No, this was not a close game. At no point did the Packers look like equals to the Patriots. The were outclassed in both talent and coaching, as evidenced by the lack of discipline that was so glaringly obvious next to a real professional organization. And after all that pregame hype, it was just as obvious who the GOAT QB was. Rodgers looks like he’s lost a step – not just his speed, but his down the field vision looks diminished when the pocket breaks down. Which it seemed to do on every play. I fear ol’ Ted Thompson may have left too many holes in the roster for Gutekunst to fill while Rodgers is still playing at an elite level.

  8. Ferris

    Not far off!!!????? Yeah not far off from the cellar in the NFC North. This year is turning into a mini rebuild. Offensive line…rebuild, Safety…rebuild, OLB…rebuild. Coach…ticket out of town…I hope.

  9. Kato

    All things considered, I thought the defense played well. Yes I know the yardage and the fact they gave up 31 points. 14 of those points came in the 4th quarter when the Patriots really opened up the playbook. And that is the difference between them and the Packers. The Patriots offense since their opening series was pretty stagnant. The play call where Edelman threw to White I believe when the offensive lineman all bailed toward the sideline to form a blocking escort was a great playcall. Something the packers probably had not seen before. That set up a TD. Then the TD to Josh Gordon, I am not sure what defense they were in. Maybe a cover 2 of some kind but that was a veteran QB move bringing up the packers young corners on the shallow route to allow Gordon to get behind them. The young corners hopefully learn from that because I think one of them should have positioned himself deeper on the play.

    McCarthy is done

    • Kato

      This isnt to say that the Packers should constantly be running trick plays. That shouldn’t be the backbone of any NFL offense. But if you are a playcaller and you see your offense isnt in a rhythm and not getting first downs, you cant be afraid to mix things up a bit to help jump start the offense.

  10. Kato

    One other thought. It might be wise to shut down Bulaga here at some point if they fall out of contention. That way they can cut him when he is healthy

  11. Don welsh

    Got to say Blake Martinez isn’t soft. Most players on defense competed and showed heart, they can’t be called out. But beside that same old same old. Clean house GUTE. THE STENCH IS GETTING BAD!

  12. Skinny

    Gute and Packers organization! PASS RUSHERS! GET PASS RUSHERS IN DRAFT OR FA! Priority number 1 this off season. And fire McCarthy of course.

  13. Disposableh3ro

    When Rodgers is pressured on 50% of passes this is what you get…fat Mike needs to go the way of the Dodo bird.

  14. Kato

    Another thought related to playcalling. Did anyone else watch how the Patriots offense was making use of all its personnel? Like it is obvious at this point Cordarrelle Patterson is a mediocre receiver. Wasnt that great in Minnesota. Rather than having him running routes they realized he was an explosive player with the ball in his hands. Rather than having him uselessly run routes why not just hand the ball directly to him? The Patriots TEs behind Gronk are not as good as Jimmy Graham but they found ways to get the ball in their hands. This Packers offense is not putting guys in a situation to succeed. Like imagine if Davante Adams was in a scheme to help free him up more often? I am not convinced that Jimmy Graham is just an average TE. Couldn’t MVS be used on jet sweeps? Wasnt Cobb a college QB? Has he ever attempted a pass? It’s not like the packers dont have offensive personnel. Honestly they are probably close to the Pat’s in that department as far as talent. They are just better coached

    • Deepsky

      I thought when Cobb was drafted the Packers would use him as a quarterback.

      That being said, Josh McDaniels tried those same gadget plays when he was a coiach with other teams and they didn’t work and folks called him stupid for even trying them.

    • Cheese

      The crowd started chanting “Brady’s better” last night. All I could think of was, no you wicked retodd’s (Boston accent), the playcalling is better.

      Half way through the season and the $13 mil Jimmy Graham only has two TD’s. I thought he was suppose to fill the shoes of the washed up Jordy Nelson who had a measly 6 td’s in 5 games last year? Or at least Jared Cook. Did the worthless Marty Bennett have any TD’s here? Doubt it. Which brings up another thing, why the hell is Lance Kendricks on this team?

      • Icebowl

        Brady certainly gets GOAT for being smahhda….
        I recall that he took less pay so the team could stay under the cap to go out and get him best available players….
        Of course its less painful when you wife makes as much as Bündchen does….

        I still contend there is a lot of clubhouse decension as team sees how much more #12 and a few others are making, not including the stoopid TV ads…. The days of Rodgers carrying the team are over – too many weaknesses for 1 guy to cover…

      • Kato

        I dont necessarily think this is all on Jimmy Graham. McCarthy has shown over and over an inability to utilize tight ends. How long did it take for Cook to find a role in the offense? The postseason? Even the crappy Raiders managed to integrate him in their offense as he is on pace for nearly 1000 yards. This has long been an issue. I am giving Jimmy Graham the benefit of the doubt here and placing most of the blame on McCarthy

      • Ferris

        That lack of production is all on McCarthy. Re-did the playbook my ass….which page? They changed the pad level of the long snapper. Everything else is the same old shit.

  15. Pattongb

    If this organization keeps McCarthy after this season I am done with them. If you read between the lines of players comments and tweets on social medium you can tell there is a serious disconnect on this team.

  16. PF4L

    But other than all of the above comments, we have a Championship team.

    Here i thought we were Super Bowl bound this season.

    PF4L <— hitting self in head Chris Farley style, i'm so stupid.

  17. Deepsky

    Rodgers isn’t Rodgers anymore. He doesn’t have the speed or agility to escape the pass rush anymore and I think his collarbone break from last year has affected his accuracy. There were a lot of passes (not just the throwaways), that in the past Rodgers would put right on target, but now he’s off. The two injuries together have turned him into only a ‘good’ quarterback.

    • PF4L

      Here we go…….the start, just like 2016. Rodgers is finished, trade him, bench him and start Kizer. I figured it was coming soon….lmao

    • Kato

      Meh. I think Rodgers footwork is bad. It appears he still is avoiding planting his leg. The cameras zoomed in on his feet at least once last night where his feet were off the ground making a throw. If I had to guess he jsnt 100%

    • Ferris

      He’s still on a bad leg and the O line throws lookout blocks on the right side. Spriggs is like having me out there blocking.

  18. PF4L

    I almost forgot something important.

    When players step up, they should be acknowledged, no matter how i feel about them. Fair is fair

    Lets give props to Mike Daniels stepping up his game and making a play busting up the middle for his sack. Well done Sir.

    I didn’t even know he was active, i thought he was still on I R.

  19. Tony41215

    How does the Pack offense consistently get the ball off with barely :01 or :00 on the game clock? Is Fat Mike looking at a play sheet or a food menu too long trying to order, I can’t tell.
    Curious what you guys think about cutting bait with MM now and just letting Philbin be the interim the rest of the year while figuring out the long term HC solution. Idk shake the tree.
    Fun fact: Packers are 24-25-1 their last 50 games. Yikes.

    • PF4L

      They obviously do it on purpose. The only reason i can think of is they do it to win time of possession. Something
      that gaining 1st downs used to accomplish.

  20. PF4L

    BREAKING NEWS: Bill Micheals has just proclaimed…..that the Green Bay Packers are now paying for the mistakes of Ted Thompson.

    The mans expertise just boggles my mind. Who could have possibly thought of that, like 3,4, or 5 years ago.

    Well done William.

  21. PF4L

    I think part of the problem (discourse) is, the offense isn’t carrying the defense. That’s what were used to, and that’s just the way it’s been for years.

    In the past Capers would be getting ripped up. Now, Pettine gets a pass because he’s the new guy. Even though the defense is giving up more PPG this year than last years defense, including the shut out.

    I suppose we could say the offense is keeping the defense on the field too long, but that wasn’t the case when the Packers led time of possession by 5 minutes.

    I want Pettine to have some time because the defense looks quicker under his watch, receivers aren’t as wide open so much like past seasons. The coverage isn’t perfect, but it is no doubt an improvement. It just hasn’t shown up on the scoreboard yet because some overpriced, under performing players need to be shown the door and the new guys need more game time experience.

    Look, this team has some talent, but it has many, many issues that Gute needs to address. He should have started corrections last off season more than he did. Hopefully now he has a better vision on what needs to be done. And lets stop with the 3-8 million dollar free agent band aids that need to retire. Not saying we shouldn’t signed any, but lets not waste good money on guys who performed….some years ago. See the last 2 seasons, how much cash was wasted? I could write a list, but you already know.

    There is no time for drama, no more time for excuses (injury,refs, etc). This team is broken and quick decisive decisions need to be made and executed. Players and coaches feelings be damned, We don’t have time for sentimental bullshit.

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