It’s Fixin’ To Heat Up

With a log-jam of 3 loss teams, the NFL has become a toss-up in the second half of the season. Has Aaron Rodgers Durabilitythis not been one of the most bizzare seasons in a long time? One week, the Broncos look unbeatable, the next, they get trucked by the Pats. Before the season began, the Bears were one of the darlings…with Jay Cutler and Brandon Marshall billed as the best tandem in the league. The dolphis…yes, I said the Dolphins destroy the Chargers 37-0. The Packers lose big in the opener so the Seahawks who have since fallen apart, drop a game to the Lions, and then go on a tear…only to be drubbed by the Saints before the bye week, wuh?

It’s exciting…but I must say I would prefer that the Packers had beat the Lions and then took care of business against the Saints going into the bye to be all alone and boring on top of the NFC North. Instead, we await the Bears at Lambeau with every game on the docket from here on out feeling like a must-win.

untitledThe national news has mentioned that the Packers have owned the Bears of late. Well, the Packers have owned the Lions for longer…we saw what happened to that. Both of these teams are very successful after a bye week and the Bears are similar to the Saints in that they MUST win this game if they have any chance of getting to the playoffs…their backs are against the wall. If the Bears are a cornered animal, the Packers better unleash the honey-badger on Sunday. But big questions still remain.

Will Aaron Rodgers be 100 percent?

Aaron tweaked a hammy against the Saints and while coach McCarthy has said “so far so good” I am one who expects trouble with a nagging injury like a hamstring injury. We have seen how Clay Matthews has been hampered by such a tweak in the past and Aaron’s mobility is much more important to his play than many recognize. Thank goodness for the bye.

If Aaron is healthy, the Bears game is just another bump in the road. Though they are a team that the Packers (obviously) need to take seriously, I think they can get it done at Lambeau.

Can the Packers win a game in which they lose the turnover ratio?

Mike McCarthy made a telling comment when he said that the Packers cannot be the kind of team that relies on winning the turnover battle to win games. Thus far they have relied on turnovers (which as always are a big indicator of success) but the point is they can’t count on turnovers all the time. Also, if the Packers play sound against the run, something that has been a problem in the past, they force teams to pass which brings the opportunities for the turnovers in the first place.

McCarthy was adamant that the problems on defense were fundamental and I agree with him. Durning a game, you are always going to win some matchups and lose other. But when you don’t play fundamental football, you thin your own ice. In the words of McCarthy, we need to “tackle the damn ball-carrier.”

Will the Packers O-line be back up to speed?

It looks like the Packers dodged a bullet with the injury to TJ Lang. With the bye week to rest and the injury not requiring surgery, TJ has a good chance to play and be feeling pretty good coming back. It also looks like the Packers will get JC Tretter back as well. The health of the O-line is of course critical to the Packers success moving forward as well as the health of Aaron Rodgers. TJ has been a fixture and we really need him to be successful against the Bears.

The Packers offensive line has shown some good things from time to time but it is not the kind of line that can lose players and still function at a high level. We have seen how replacements have fared and no one in Packernation wants to see our starters watching from the sidelines.

So the Packers future is, to a great extent, at their fingertips coming off the bye. Here’s to a healthy team, and here’s to the return of Packer football!




It’s Fixin’ To Heat Up
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One thought on “It’s Fixin’ To Heat Up

  • November 5, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    Strange year and stranger week. Am I the only one baffled by the cutting of Sherrod? I know he had some issues, but he was serviceable. Who steps in if either T or G goes down? I mean it’s football and injuries happen. We’ve already lost Barclay for the season and Tretter for 8 weeks. Depth at O-line wasn’t exactly a strength before, and seems like a huge hole now. Are they really that confident in Tretter, or am I missing something?

    I’m not surprised by the division race. I expected it to be a 3 dog fight with the Pack, Bears, and Lions. Only the way the Bears have lost games surprises me. They beat San Fran at San Fran, and seemed to go downhill ever since. But the Lions are for real. They may stumble, but will it be enough? Not getting off to a fast start this season may cost us dearly in the end. And it looks like MN will get Peterson back soon. Ouch even. Who wants a playoff game in Detroit? Not I, says me.

    I really hope Rodgers, Lang, and Tretter are at full strength (Tretter whether he plays or not, we know Rodgers and Lang will if healthy).

    I’m fairly confident that Cutler will still be Cutler. But if he stops throwing to our players, our D will have all they can handle from him and Forte. We cannot let Bennett have his way with us again. I look at the schedule, and don’t see any games we can take for granted.

    Excuse me for having a little fun but; I fundamentally agree with our lacking fundamentals. But I also think things like play calling and schemes haven’t helped our cause. Someone needs to sit fundamentals down and explain professional football odds to him. We didn’t use 1/3 of the field on offense for the Seahawks, although other teams have exploited their D across the field pretty well. Paying attention fundamentals? Your odds increase when you use the entire field, it gives the D that much more ground to cover and to guess where the play is going. But hey, Sherman didn’t get an INT! Win/Win! Or is that Win/Lose? I know, let’s try an onside kick! Oops, maybe not. In our defense, we only had like 6 months to prepare for that game. Losing Bulaga hurt in Seattle and Detroit, but who’s fault was it that we didn’t have a decent replacement again? Oh yea, it was fundamental’s fault! Never mind.

    On to the Saints! Let’s line up our OLB at WR and throw to him! We all know that Peppers is a better option than Nelson, Cobb, Adams, Boykin, and Janis for a quick slant! Except he didn’t catch it and was blanketed by a defender. Stupid fundamentals didn’t execute! On 4th and 1 on our side of the 50, let’s line up in goal line and hand off to Lacy. No one will expect that and we’ve been so successful with running the ball in every game this year. Hmmm, how did that not work?! Who told the Saints what we were going to do?? That formation should’ve fooled them big time. But hey, it only gave up 3 points. Or was it actually more because it didn’t seem to slow their momentum? Hmmm… I know, let’s try another onside kick!! Dang that fundamentals guy!!

    What happened the last time we squeezed into the playoffs with a 6 seed? Oh that’s right! Go Pack go! :)


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