Though it didn’t feel like it, the Packers’ Week 11 victory over the Lions was a great one. The team overcame a significant number of key absences to squeak past another banged up NFC North squad. Green Bay’s 24-20 win in Motown put the Packers in legitimate position to challenge the Bears for the NFC North title. As for the Lions, winning out is almost a requirement to make the playoffs.
Mason Crosby cannot be trusted down the stretch. Crosby has missed seven kicks in six games, something that could influence McCarthy’s decision making on offense in the near term. Veterans Nate Kaeding and Ryan Longwell remain available for tryout but the Packers have made it clear that they are committed to Crosby – at least for now.
James Starks should be feature back until Cedric Benson returns. Starks was no home run hitter but delivered exactly what the Packers needed when his number was called. If the jury is still out on Starks, it’s because of his durability. To be the Packers’ every down back, Starks must stay healthy over a sustained period of time.
Morgan Burnett is developing into a seasoned defensive back. Though he has lacked big play ability, Burnett has quietly built competency as a starter in the secondary. He made the spotlight in the wrong way against Detroit by whiffing on an interception but has been a sure tackler and reliable defender for the majority of the season.
The level of depth on the Green Bay roster is phenomenal. Low profile players like Dezman Moses, Brad Jones and M.D. Jennings impressed in a competitive division game with big implications for both teams. It’s clear that the Packers have surplus talent in the defensive backfield with Davon House, Casey Hayward and Jerron McMillian making solid contributions on a regular basis.