There's no doubt the Packers backed off in the third and fourth quarters. Part of that was a conscious choice by McCarthy to give the ball to Lacy and run some clock. Part of that was the Lions putting together two drives of more than 5:42 in the second half. Those drives ate up nearly 13 minutes of clock. And that was only two possessions. Packers had six possessions in the first half. They only had four in the second.
First, Nick Perry had the game of his life today. He was absolutely phenomenal. His run defense is off the charts because of his strength. Perry finished with 7 tackles, six of which were solo tackles. He had two sacks, one pass deflection and was just unblockable. However, you did see a gaping hole where Matthews typically plays on the other side. Julius Peppers does not seem to be as effective as he was last season. Jayrone Elliott was receiving his first playing time of the season. And don't forget, Datone Jones was gone as well. In total, the Packers were credited for four quarterback hits.
Abbrederis did not get any snaps on offense today. It was mildly surprising but not a total stunner. Abbrederis is essentially another version of Cobb, and Cobb is going to play more than 90% of the snaps. Not a lot of room for Abbrederis. Especially if Trevor Davis plays on the perimeter. Davis is faster, more explosive and gives the Packers a legitimate threat.
Definitely played a lot of zone in the second half. More than usual for sure. I think part of it had to do with protecting the lead. I think another part of it might have been to give Randall some help against Marvin Jones Jr., who was outstanding today.
Hawkins had a great pass breakup. He also allowed a deep touchdown. Trevor Davis drew the 66-yard PI penalty. He also had an easy drop. Fackrell had a sack and played fairly well. Rollins and Gunter were steady.
Way too early to tell. (Full disclosure: I had to ask Tom Silverstein about Buckley. He was drafted when I was 2 years old.)
Jared Cook got hurt. He was in walking boot and on crutches after the game. Didn't look great. Still needs some tests. Aaron Ripkowski hurt his back. He did not want to discuss the injury after the game. Damarious Randall missed a couple plays due to illness. He wasn't feeling well today. Blake Martinez had to get his nose stitched up but came back to the game.
It's hard to say without hearing the things McCarthy says to his players at halftime and on the sidelines. But it was perfectly clear today that McCarthy changed his focus for the second half and tried to eat up clock. No doubt about it.
Looks like Hayward has three INTs in his last two games, if I read correctly online. That's very impressive considering he had zero INTs in Green Bay last year. The Packers need Sam Shields back in a hurry -- if he can pass concussion protocol.
It will be interesting to see what's up with Randall. Believe it or not, he is known as the corner who watches more film than anyone else on the team. His position coach, Joe Whitt Jr., says he watches more film than everybody else in the room. So that's not the proble.
SUPER smart play by Montgomery. Many of the writers, myself included, didn't even know that was a rule. Montgomery said he first heard the rule in college but had never applied it in a game. To think of that on the fly and do it properly is very impressive.
I don't know the answer to that.
There were certainly a bunch of positives to take from this game. More than the negatives. It was a good step for the Packers when they badly needed one. I think players will come back from the bye feel pretty happy with their team.
They have a TE on the practice squad, Devon Cajuste. That's an option if they feel he's ready and Cook's injury proves to be severe.
I think the Packers are missing a veteran presence because of Shields' injury. If Shields was healthy, they'd have Shields, Burnett, Clinton-Dix and Hyde as four of their six DBs in the dime defense. Then you'd add Randall and Rollins, a first- and second-round pick, respectively, who are in their second seasons. That's not a bad mixture. It's the injury to Shields that throws everything out of balance.
Thanks! That was before my time. I never would have known.
That's not what I'm doing. I'm just being realistic about the situations!
Starks only had 1 carry, and it went for -1 yards. Not sure what the reason was for that. We were all fairly surprised up here in the press box.
He was released last Monday, prior to the Vikings game.
A little bit. I think some teams are "aiming" for the goal line and forcing teams to return, knowing most players won't reach the 25-yard line. But I don't think it's a huge change.
Yes, Ripkowski hurt his back. Severity unknown, obviously.
All right guys, I'm outta here.