Packers-Vikings recap pt. 2.

Well the Packers win streak against division foes will end at 13 in a row with yesterday’s loss to the Minnesota Vikings. The defense wasn’t up to par but the offense looked very 2011ish. So let’s get to what I saw in yesterday’s game.

1. Secondary communication:

  • Our local newspaper just did a story about how the communication on the defense was so much better this season, but at the end of the game, Ponder found a wide open receiver on a 3rd and long that allowed the Peterson long run and eventual game winning field goal. This is where I think Charles Woodson will made a difference if he is on the field next week. 

2. Aaron Rodgers:

  • Imagine the numbers he could put up if he had an above average o-line. Rodgers was sacked another five times yesterday but still managed to put up 365 yards passing and four touchdowns but did have a fumble. What the guy has done in the past two years (84 passing touchdowns to 14 picks). This team will go as far as Rodgers is able to stand on his feet.

3. Run defense:

  • I realize Adrian Peterson is an absolute beast, but you can’t keep letting the guy rack up 200 yards on you. The defense needs to wrap up and gang tackle a guy like Peterson. 

Round 3 is this Saturday night at 7pm at Lambeau! Get your long johns and cheeseheads on and get loud Packer nation!


Week 12 Picks

I had a perfect 5-0 in picks last week but still trail my friend, Josh Brewer by a few games in our pick’em. Make sure you check out his blog at Let’s get to the picks!

1. Minnesota at Chicago:

  • Minnesota is one of the big surprises of the NFL and got a key win against Detroit two weeks ago. They are only a game behind the Bears and the Packers for first place so this is a huge game for both teams. The Vikings will not have Percy Harvin at their disposal because of an ankle injury which will limit what Minnesota can do on offense. Onthe Bears side of things they will get Jay Cutler back. I think Bears fans saw how important Cutler is to this team because Jason Campbell couldn’t do anything against a tough 49ers defense. The return of Cutler and the absence of Harvin will be the deciding factors for a Bears victory.
  • Bears- 27-16

2. Atlanta at Tampa Bay:

  • Tampa Bay is another surprise team competing for a playoff spot in the NFC. They welcome the 9-1 Falcons to town who started hot and have found ways to win some sloppy games. Tampa has the worst rated pass defense in the NFL so look for Matty Ice to get back on track this week even if he doesn’t have stand-out Julio Jones lining up across from Roddy White. The keys for Tampa to win are a steady dose of Doug Martin and for Josh Freeman to be smart with the ball. Atlanta has to take advantage of Tampa’s terrible pass D. The Falcons get back on track.
  • Falcons- 34-24

3. New Orleans at San Francisco:

  • Jim Harbaugh declared he was going to ride the hot hand at quarterback and is doing just that by naming second year man Colin Kaepernick the starter for Sunday. After he tore apart the Bears’ defense on Monday night, Harbaugh gave the nod to the Nevada product to go against a horrendous New Orleans defense. New Orleans has quietly won three straight and five of their last six, the Saints are quietly approaching the group of teams fighting for the wild card spots. I think the 9ers made a premature decision at quarterback and the Saints hot streak will continue.
  • Saints- 30-20

4. Baltimore at San Diego:

  • Before the season started this was one of the games I was looking forward to the most. But yet again, the Chargers are who we thought they were. A team with a ton of talent who can’t live up to it. Philip Rivers is struggling again to protect the ball (see the Tampa game). The Ravens pulled out an impressive win in a slug fest with the Steelers on Sunday night football. Jacoby Jones has been an incredible acquisition for this team but they need to get Ray Rice the ball more since he is only averaging 55 yards rushing a game in his last five. Ravens are just the superior team here.
  • Ravens- 27-17

5. Green Bay at NY Giants:

  • The Packers are pulling out games this year with their defense and offense which has made their five game winning streak even more impressive. They will be without Clay Matthews again this week which I think will be a huge blow. The Giants are in a slump but I don’t trust this team any farther than I can throw them. And with my bad knee I shouldn’t be throwing anybody. I feel like the Giants wake up out of their coma this Sunday and end the Packers streak.
  • Giants- 27-24

Recap of Packers-Lions game.

Aaron Rodgers can now make more so called experts shut their mouths. Many thought Rodgers couldn’t engineer game winning drives, but guess what? He did just that yesterday. Also the defense that got burned and bailed out by the offense so many times last season, was key to bringing home a W in a very important division game. Let’s get to why the Packers won yesterday.

1. Pass Rush:

  • Not only did the Packers rack up five sacks without Clay Matthews, they got consistent pressure on Matt Stafford which resulted in a day of 22 incompletions. Guys like Erik Walden and Dezman Moses had phenomenal games by getting sacks and forcing fumbles. The depth on this team is easily superior to what they had last season.

2. Young secondary:

  • Cornerback, in my mind is one of the most difficult positions to get acclimated to in the NFL. Don’t tell that to Casey Hayward. Hayward, a second round pick out of Vanderbilt added another interception to bring his team lead to five. Davon House, who was looking to start the year as the starting cornerback in the base defense adds great depth. House made several nice pass break-ups yesterday and recorded his first career sack. Add the touchdown return from M.D. Jennings and another sack and 10 tackles from Morgan Burnett and this secondary looks very different from last year.

3. Jermichael Finley:

  • YOTTO! Well Jermichael really isn’t taking over but he made a huge impact on offense yesterday. Finley put the Packers up 7-3 on a wide open catch and run into the end zone. Also his 40 yard scamper down the sideline with under four minutes to go was a great site seeing as Finley hasn’t had a long catch all season. Hopefully this jump starts the rest of his season.

4. Calm and collected:

  • With four minutes left and down six points, Aaron Rodgers and the offense took the field and put together an extremely impressive drive that started with an 11 yard draw by James Starks and the game winning touchdown to Randall Cobb with 1:55 left to go.

Packers mid-season Special Teams Report.

Kicker: C-

  • Mason Crosby had his best season last year, connecting on a career best 85.7 percent of his kicks but this year he has missed five of his last ten and only hitting 66.7 percent of his field goals. The bye week came at a great time for Crosby to get away from football and clear his head. While his percentage is one of the worst in the NFL, I still have faith in Crosby.

Punting: A

  • Tim Masthay is a duel-threat that teams need to plan for at all times……. OK I might be going a bit overboard there but Masthay has brought consistency to the punter position for the first time since the days of Josh Bidwell or Craig Hentrich. Masthay has only had four touchbacks this season to go along with only 14 returned punts out of 44. He has done a great job of hang time and the coverage unit has done well in getting down the field.

Long snapping: A+

  • Brett Goode is the Packers long snapper in case you weren’t aware. Goode has been a model of consistency and was rewarded with a three year extension. Keep doing your job well Brett and your name won’t get mentioned until a clutch kick in the playoffs.

Returning: A-

  • Randall Cobb has taken lightening from the heavens and sparked the Packers return game from his first game as a rookie. Cobb has been pretty secure with the ball this year and once again has shown why he was worth a second round pick. His punt return for a TD in week one and ability to give the Packers good field position. Cobb is averaging 11.1 yards per punt return and 27.8 yards per kick return.


Week 11 picks.

I didn’t have the greatest showing in my picks last week only going 2-3. The Pack and Buckeyes are both back in action so my weekend is complete! Now I just need to do better in my picks.

1. Green Bay at Detroit:

  • The Packers had an interesting bye week where Aaron Rodgers might have gotten engaged but don’t ask him about that, he cares more about his play on the field. Bryan Bulaga went on IR and a few guys such as Jordy Nelson and John Kuhn should be back. Detroit has its back against the wire cage which makes them a very dangerous team. The Packers have been playing very solid football. Detroit will make too many mistakes and the Pack will tame the Lions with their whip and stool to bring home the W.
  • Packers- 31-27

2. San Diego at Denver:

  • Will someone please get a hold of Ron Burgundy and have him tell the Chargers he has an urgent and horrifying news story to tell them. That message would go something like, “hey if you lose this game, you can kiss a possible division title and playoff spot good-bye.” Well they can kiss it good-bye because they can’t take care of the damn ball and Peyton Manning is playing stupid good this season.
  • Denver- 30-20

3. Indianapolis at New England:

  • The 6-3 Colts, (cue the Tim Allen, AWOOOOAAAAH!) are on the road to take on the 6-3 Patriots. Andrew Luck has looked like a rookie at times but has proven why he was the number one selection this season. The Colts are in an overhaul of their roster, new defense and have their head coach, Chuck Pagano going through cancer and have played better than anyone outside the organization thought. New England’s offense got even better this year with the emergence of running back, Stevan Ridley but the defense is still horrendous against the pass. Luck will have a chance to carve up some early Thanksgiving turkey but New England is the superior team.
  • Patriots- 34-27

4. Baltimore at Pittsburgh:

  • This is a Baltimore team that has won because of offense this season. Yes, offense. With a defense ranking 26th against the run and pass and squaring off against a division foe who ranks 1st against the pass and 5th against the run, the Ravens will have their hands full. But much like a Packers-Bears game, throw the records and stat rankings out the window and get strapped in for a physical, mauling match between two teams battling for first in the AFC North. Steelers are on a hot streak but with no Roethlisberger I have to go with the Ravens.
  • Baltimore- 24-16

5. Chicago at San Francisco:

  • Pretty sure the last time these two teams played each other in a prime time game it was the battle of Ken Dorsey vs. Craig Krenzel. Monday’s game could have a battle of backup QB’s again with Jay Cutler all ready ruled out leaving Jason Campbell at the helm. Alex Smith’s availability is still up in the air which could leave second year man Colin Kaepernick starting of the 49ers. Either way this game will come down to the running game, defense and who can make the big play needed to pull off a win. Monday night it will be San Fran.
  • 49ers- 23-16

NFL Picks week 10.

The Packers have their bye this week which comes at a great time with the amount of injuries piling up. The five weekly picks continue and there are some interesting implications in some of these games. Let’s get at it!

1. Detroit at Minnesota:

  • The Lions started off horrible early on this year and are now battling to get out of the basement in the NFC North. They take their momentum into Minnesota this weekend to square off against a Vikings team who is reeling after posting a 5-2 record to start the season. Detroit has looked like the team from last season lately and need this win to keep pace in the fiercely competitive NFC North.
  • Lions 27-17

2. Atlanta at New Orleans:

  • New Orleans got a season saving win last week over the Philadelphia Eagles. The Saints at 3-5 still have a small chance to make the playoffs and will have a hell of a test this Sunday against the undefeated Falcons. New Orleans defense stepped it up last week but then again whose defense hasn’t against the Eagles? The Falcons offense is explosive and I think Michael Turner gives the Saints defense a swift kick in the teeth.
  • Falcons- 34-27

3. Oakland at Baltimore:

  • The Ravens held on against a Browns team last week who refuses to go quietly while Oakland couldn’t have stopped Doug Martin if they had 15 guys on defense trying to tackle him. Baltimore needs to keep going through Ray Rice on offense. Joe Flacco has had some incredible games this year but Rice is what makes this team go. Carson Palmer threw for over 400 yards last week but they can’t keep from turning the ball over. This could be another confidence building game for the Baltimore D.
  • Ravens- 27-16

4. Dallas at Philadelphia:

  • Back when I did my season preview I had the Eagles winning the NFC East with the Cowboys taking third. The Eagles could keep in the hunt with a win this Sunday and a possible mid-season collapse by the Giants. A loss for either one of these teams spells doom on any chance to make the playoffs. Both teams can’t take care of the ball but the Eagles have too much explosiveness for the Cowboys to handle.
  • Eagles- 30-20

5. Houston at Chicago:

  • What do both these teams have in common? They are both 7-1 and their only loss has been to the Green Bay Packers. Sorry I couldn’t do this post and not have some reference to my Packers. Houston is probably the most balanced team in the NFL while Chicago boasts a defense that is more explosive than their offense. Houston can beat you in so many ways so I like them to pull out the win on Sunday night.
  • Texans- 20-17