Packers Struggle, Fall to Lions 31-23

The Green Bay Packers (2-2-1, 1-1-1 NFC North) struggled tremendously against the Detroit Lions (2-3, 1-0 NFC North) Sunday and fell to their division rival 31-23 on the road at Ford Field.  

The Green Bay Packers (2-2-1, 1-1-1 NFC North) struggled tremendously against the Detroit Lions (2-3, 1-0 NFC North) Sunday and fell to their division rival 31-23 on the road at Ford Field.

From the get go, everything that could have gone wrong for the Packers did. After the Lions were forced to punt on the first drive of the game there was a questionable call that the ball hit cornerback Kevin King on the play, and the Lions regained possession at the 1-yard line for what was then an easy touchdown on the next play.

With two of his three top receivers in Randall Cobb (hamstring) and Geronimo Allison (concussion) ruled out of the game, quarterback Aaron Rodgers had to put his trust in Davante Adams and an extremely young wide receiver core in Sunday’s matchup. In the first half, it looked like nothing was meshing, Rodgers even scrambled out of the pocket only to end up fumbling twice. In the second half, things began to click a little more for the youngsters and rookie Marquez Valdes-Scantling came up with his first career touchdown in the third quarter.

Rodgers struggled at times in the game, especially in the first half. There was a number of missed passes, miscommunications, and just simple mistakes that you usually do not see from a veteran quarterback like him. He found more of a rhythm in the second half and ended up going 32/52, for 442 yards. 3 TDs, and no interceptions according to ESPN's statistics. Despite his performance in the second half Rodgers was still not pleased.

"I’ve got to play better in the first half. Second half we got into a groove,” Rodgers said at the post-game press conference. “We’ve got to put together a full game one of these days."

What we learned: The game planning still isn’t working

It seems like the first half every single week is a struggle for the Packers. Whatever game plan coach Mike McCarthy and company are coming up with each week always seems to be one that is under prepared and requires adjustment every single week before heading into the second half. The Packers have dug their own grave (or almost in week one) in the first half of multiple different games so far this season. We saw it week one against Chicago, we saw it week three against the Redskins, and we saw it again here in week five against the Lions. The Packers have also lost both of their road games so far this season which does not fare well considering they travel to play the Rams and the Patriots in just two weeks.

Like I have said before, it is just unacceptable to give up as many first half points as the Packers do, no matter who their quarterback is and how many times he has been able to make up ground in the past. Period.

What went right: Rodgers makes history

There was so much that went wrong in Sunday’s game, it was hard to find some things that actually went right, so we will focus on an important milestone that 12 was able to reach Sunday.

With his much-improved performance in the second half, Rodgers hit a career total 40,000 passing yards, and 300 career touchdowns, and did so faster than any other quarterback in NFL History according to the Fox Broadcast.

What went wrong: Mason Crosby

When I said that almost everything went wrong for the Packers Sunday, I really meant it. Kicker Mason Crosby had a historically awful career day, and it potentially caused Green Bay the win as well. The veteran kicker missed 4 different field goals and an extra point Sunday, leaving a potential 13 points off the board for the Packers. If Crosby was able to hit his targets, the Packers would have walked away from week five with a division win and a winning record overall, no matter how sloppy the play was.  According to ESPN’s Rob Demovsky, it was the first time since at least 2001 that a NFL Kicker has missed that many kicks.

Offensive Player of the Game: Davante Adams

With the absence of Cobb and Allison it was obvious that wide receiver Davante Adams would have to come up and make a few plays Sunday and for the most part he did. Adams finished the day with 9 RECs for 140 yards and a touchdown. All week it was a worry that Adams too would sit out in Sunday’s game due to a calf injury, but he was ready to go, and in doing so picked up the second most receiving yards in a game in his career.

Defensive Player of the Game: Blake Martinez

The Packers’ defense played a very uneventful game for the most part Sunday. They did not force any turnovers, and they only got their hands on Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford five times. Linebacker Blake Martinez just once again played a solid and consistent game for the Packers.  

Martinez led the team in tackles with 5, 4 of which were solo, and had 2 of the team’s 3 sacks on the day.

 

Up next, the San Francisco 49ers travel to Lambeau Field for a Monday Night Football Matchup in a must-win game for the Green Bay Packers. Kickoff is set for 8:15 PM EST.

Sarah Kelliher is a contributor for CheeseheadTV and a podcaster with Pack-A-Day Podcast. She can be found via Twitter @sarahkelliher4

 

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Comments (55)

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sardog's picture

October 07, 2018 at 04:52 pm

E-X-L-A-X

You will feel better...

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sardog's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:21 pm

On the serious side, Kevin King should have seen the wave off or heard the ST Signal Word for the fair catch. King did not play smart all game, it seemed like he wanted to fight with those numerous penalties.
Also, though this was a nationally televised game, Fox did not bring all their cameras. For instance, the above camera that follows the play or a couple of opposite side of the field cameras. Fox only brings those for the Game of the Week broadcast. In other words, the refs nor the coaches have the benefit of seeing all angles at all games for challenges. The NFL should require the best camera package for all games.

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Lare's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:15 pm

Regardless if King touched it or not, he shouldn't have been anywhere near it. It's not being returned so just stay the heck away like everyone else did,

It was just a stupid play on King's part.

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Since'61's picture

October 07, 2018 at 06:30 pm

Correct! Plus the game was not televised on the East coast. It was not nationally televised. Thanks, Since '61

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sardog's picture

October 07, 2018 at 06:44 pm

Since 61, I live in AZ now, got the game, but didn't check the broadcast map...my bad for saying nationally televised. Thanks

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Chuck Farley's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:12 pm

They are supposed to be coached to not turn back on ball. My issue, this team had horrendous penalties saving the lions drives over and over.
Poor coaching or stupid players, don't know!

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Mojo's picture

October 07, 2018 at 11:41 pm

... and expanding on the stupid penalties, is it too much to ask the kick return units to go one time without a flag? Maybe there's been a couple this year but It's so prevalent It just seems like every time.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

October 07, 2018 at 04:53 pm

Yet another game where the Packers where totally underprepared to play football. We've finally gotten a look at what McCarthy can do with other Coordinators and a different GM who builds the team from all angles. It isn't pretty, and if it does not get a lot better then I think it's time to move on.

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cheesycowboy's picture

October 07, 2018 at 04:57 pm

Thanks Sarah.
There seems to be no must win games at this point in the season but if the Packers lose at home next week with the Rams and Patriots on the horizon on the road, we could be talking about the Packers 2 1st round draft picks before Christmas.

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Royalty Free GM's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:03 pm

Don’t give up yet. Fire MM right now.
This team needs a big wake up call. There is potential in this team but not with MM.

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Royalty Free GM's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:12 pm

Enough is enough. Let some new creative HC release the power and fire that is still left inside this HOF caliber quarterback of ours.

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Kb999's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:06 pm

I don't know where to start. I'll just say P U

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cheesycowboy's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:10 pm

Silly, I'm sure there a a better coach than Mike sitting on his couch waiting for a call at this point in the season...

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Lare's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:12 pm

Don't know that any could be much worse.

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splitpea1's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:48 pm

That's for sure.

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cheesycowboy's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:22 pm

Every team has a weakness somewhere. A lack of talent speaks of Ted and especially the 2015 draft. So many coaches and front office restructures clouds the goal.

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Fire_Gute's picture

October 07, 2018 at 09:53 pm

2017 is looking like a real stinker so far as well. King won't play 7 games this year, Jones sucks ass apparently and can't play either position he was drafted for , adams sucks, biegel is gone. We got a solid number 2 running back and a possible high end back that the completely incompetent hc won't play. And tj watt had another 3 sack day

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ScaryGary's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:07 pm

at least the vikings suck to

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sardog's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:18 pm

Don'tworry, theVikes are beating the Eagles 17-3 right now...so be careful of speaking bad mojo:)

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Lare's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:11 pm

This is just a very poorly coached & prepared team with a lack of talent at key positions. They beat themselves every week more than the opposing team does.

Unfortunately, it looks like it's going to be a long season.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

October 07, 2018 at 06:47 pm

I think this is an excellent summary.

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Royalty Free GM's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:22 pm

You forgot poorly managed organisation.

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croatpackfan's picture

October 08, 2018 at 04:03 am

Lets see:
"This is just a very poorly coached & prepared team with a lack of talent at key positions."

QB - Aaron Rodgers
LT - David Bakhtiari
WR - Davante Adams
TE - Jimmy Graham
RB - Aaron Jones

NT - Kenny Clark
DB - Jaire Alexander, Josh Jackson, Kevin King, ha-Ha Clinton Dix
LB - Blake Martinez, Clay Matthews (he is old but still excellent player)
DT - Mike Daniels, Dean Lowry

Yeah, lot of lack of talent at key positions on the team...

Another dooms day?

Bravo

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

October 08, 2018 at 04:44 am

Well, I think I agree Croat. GB doesn't lack talent at key positions: it is just a poorly coached and under-prepared team.

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Lphill's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:22 pm

Fire McCarthy to shake up the team make Philbin interim coach for the rest of the season then find a new HC .

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Bearmeat's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:25 pm

As Nagler said, this is a bad team right now. The team absolutely needs to recover and win the division by the end of the year or MM needs to go.

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splitpea1's picture

October 07, 2018 at 06:51 pm

Winning the division seems like a pretty tall order right now, even with our easy schedule. You have to be able to beat mediocre teams on the road--so far they've lost both, and have not looked good in doing so either time.

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Bearmeat's picture

October 07, 2018 at 09:41 pm

Agreed. But that's the standard with an elite QB. If you're not getting enough out of that player, someone else will be behind your desk soon.

Also, we've all seen ARod go on tears before. That is still quite possible. I'm pissed off at the offense, at the coaching staff and at ARod. But, I'd be far more worried if it were the defense blowing goats. We know the offense has the horses to put up points at least.

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Skip greenBayless's picture

October 07, 2018 at 11:40 pm

Looking back we should have kept Hundley and started him on all road games and start Rodgers at all home games. We'd be undefeated at this point. Damn it!!

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Fire_Gute's picture

October 07, 2018 at 10:02 pm

I hope we don't win it this year. If this garbage truck of a team backs into the playoffs its going nowhere, but its another feather in the cap of the highly successful head turd. Im halfway holding out hope that the Rams game is so bad that MM isn't allowed on the trip home.
Mark Murphy might have his head so far in the titletown districts ass he doesn't care about winning, but he'll understand loss of income. No home playoff gave revenue, titletown and pro shop revenue, ect. Losing money might get his attention before losing games

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SpudRapids's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:33 pm

Fire everyone... aahhhhhhh!!!!!!

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Royalty Free GM's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:33 pm

Either fire MM or let AR go somewhere else, where he is appreciated.
MM doesn’t deserve AR.
If Packers want to keep MM, let AR go.

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stockholder's picture

October 07, 2018 at 06:20 pm

This should have been the conversation before A-Rod signed his extension. Your comment is exactly why I questioned the extension. The love for Arron Rodgers should not be without TOUGH LOVE! He's been far from spectacular since Chicago. The Clutch players, make plays. Were seeing good performances from question marks. But the starters have become far from dependable. The ball isn't coming out quick! The Red zone is a must catch area. Most players are doing well. Adams caught some good passes but I want heroes. There are NO heroes on this team. Only players that show promise. Stats aren't going to WIN GAMES. ( As was proven today. ) A-ROD must lead by example. That has not happened since the Bears. His play should be under the microscope. Just as much as the coach. MM is a keeper. And A-Rod must show he's not part of the flaws!

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jhlisic's picture

October 07, 2018 at 05:56 pm

I don't think McCarthy deserves as much blame as he's getting. If the offense executes in the first half, then there is no question marks regarding team preparation.
Unfortunately, for as brilliant as Rodgers is, a lot of blame should fall on him. He continuously puts the team at a disadvantage by refusing to release the ball to the open guys, leaving yards and TDs out on the field. Scrambling around with poor pocket awareness has led to avoidable sacks / fumbles. This style of play also puts Rodgers and the team in a vulnerable position because it invites pressure , and leads to potentially significant injury.

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kevgk's picture

October 07, 2018 at 06:22 pm

Thanks for your intelligent post, but its easier for me to scapegoat the HC despite him putting the team in a position to win, sorry.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:02 pm

Either MM can make AR play within the structure of the offense or he can't. So far there is no evidence that MM has that capability. Either MM can't get AR to buy into the offensive structure or MM doesn't have the moral authority to insist.

Bye MM.

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jhlisic's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:22 pm

I agree mate. The team lacks discipline. Same fundamental mistakes over and over. And the big issue seems to be Rodgers lack of respect for authority. He's obviously refusing to play within the confines of the offense, which unfortunately lands on the head coach.
The irony is that had the offense been executed as it is designed, we would've seen more yards, points, and probably more wins. On field execution is this teams problem, and it begins with an undisciplined QB.

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stockholder's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:53 pm

Then your saying it is MM. Not T,. Not Murphy. Not Capers. Not Brett Favre. It's been MM all along. That just keeps the drama going in Green Bay. WINNING IS NOT IMPORTANT. The remaining veterans will give up. Loyalty, commitment, and just sorry for Green Bay fans again. You guys forget what happened after Starr, Lombardi, Title Town itself. Sorry I 'm not in agreement. Bet Gute couldn't trade A-rod!

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jhlisic's picture

October 07, 2018 at 08:12 pm

I'm saying the star QB failing to follow instructions is going to be part of the reason MM gets fired. Maybe McCarthy's message is no longer resonating with Rodgers, or Rodgers is ignoring him.
There's also no guarantee that with a new HC or play caller, that Rodgers will execute the game plan as designed.

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stockholder's picture

October 07, 2018 at 09:45 pm

60 minutes. Thats what were not seeing from A-rod now. A-Rod wants Adams to much. Adams is a good WR now. But still the film doesn't lie. His catches are 10 yards with YAC. I understand were working with rookies. But he's looking for the HR or Hail Mary. He's not a lunch pail QB anymore. It's just a game now. Our flight leader has jet lag. Unless A-Rod listens to his traffic Controller, he will crash this team and won't throw in a super-bowl again.

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kevgk's picture

October 07, 2018 at 06:31 pm

I don't know how people look at a game where the kicker misses 13 points, Rodgers fumbles in a short field twice, and the Lions were gifted a free posession at the one yard line, while the team still only lost by 11, and rant and rave about McCarthy.
People see what they want to see, but it clearly wasn't the game today.

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Chuck Farley's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:22 pm

Ah, the lions always had a big lead and didn't need to score a lot. Plus, they had us shooting ourselves in the foot all day, can't blame them.
This was a 1_3 team that kicked our ass. This game wasn't as close as the score indicated.

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kevgk's picture

October 07, 2018 at 08:25 pm

But MM's game plan would have won IF some of the things I listed didn't happen, and it isn't like they happen often. Do you think McCarthy is responsible for Crosby to miss as many as he did?

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Fire_Gute's picture

October 07, 2018 at 10:15 pm

Mm is supposed to have the team ready to play. They weren't. A couple of players playing uncharacteristically bad is on the players. 40 of them playing like a ball of shit is on the coach. Like previously mentioned, this is one of those games where the score and the stats dont really tell the story of the game. GB looked like crap after their stop on the lions first drive of the game.
Then there's the Aaron Jones situation. You have a struggling offense, 2 extremely raw WRs playing big minutes, and your best offense weapon is getting 7 carries. The last one in garbage time. That's on MM and his stubbornness.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

October 08, 2018 at 05:14 am

You're focusing on physical errors, Kevgk. I don't think all that much of Crosby but indeed he is not going to mishit the ball 5 times again. Here is what I am complaining about:

Play is designed for AR to throw the ball at the 2.1 second mark to receiver X. Said receiver is in fact open but AR eschews that pass and holds the ball waiting for a deeper pass. Maybe something bad happens, but even if something good happens this is still a problem. AR's DVOA on broken plays was excellent for a long time, but his DVOA on broken plays has sucked and been well below average since 2015. Something's got to give.

Do you have any solution, Kevgk? Do you think it is even a problem?

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Chuck Farley's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:17 pm

Hey pettine. Teams figured it out, the pass d is God awful. They are happy to go deep for a quick six, then watch mm run the ball trying to catch up.
The pass d will keep this team from the playoffs. Can't cover can't tackle.

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Malland56's picture

October 08, 2018 at 01:14 am

Run the ball to catch up? What game were you watching? They only ran the ball 17 times the whole game!!!!

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PatrickGB's picture

October 07, 2018 at 07:21 pm

It was just a bad luck day. The team will play better. Anyway, I hope so. I think that there were things that can and will be corrected. But I don’t see see a championship team, at least not yet.

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Demon's picture

October 07, 2018 at 09:03 pm

Yeah thats all it is bad luck (rolls eyes)

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Malland56's picture

October 08, 2018 at 01:18 am

Bad lucky day. Lions 4 for 4 in red zone last I heard. 3-12 going into the game. Bad coaching again by MM. Team not ready to play key game.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

October 08, 2018 at 05:25 am

ALP didn't see a championship team in the pre-season and suggested that signing one-year rentals was a waste of cap space. That would be Lewis, Wilkerson and probably Twill. That's about $12M in cap space. I didn't agree because I thought we had enough talent that given health and important things going well we were contenders. I didn't think AR has so many elite years left that we could tank a year. IDK that I think ALP was correct even now, but I am not nearly so sure that he was wrong anymore.

BTW, did ALP get banned (if so, I missed whatever happened) or did he exile himself?

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murphy's picture

October 07, 2018 at 08:48 pm

"Rodgers hit a career total 400,000 passing yards"

Now that would be something...

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Mojo's picture

October 08, 2018 at 12:19 am

In a game with a number of bizarre plays, someone please explain to me what Ha Ha was doing on Detroits score right before the half.

If anyone has time to review it notice how he abandons the area where Jones is heading to go to an area where no one is. What the hell was that?

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Malland56's picture

October 08, 2018 at 01:11 am

Where was the Packer defense in the red zone? Last I heard during the game was that Detroit was 3 and 12 in the red zone going into today's game. I do think they went 4 for 4 in the red zone. Dix is getting to me. He seems to screw up too much on coverage.

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ILPackerBacker's picture

October 08, 2018 at 12:14 pm

It might be worth while to watch a football game, maybe even if it is not a packer game.

Adams, nobody else, Adams compared himself to Hopkins. I hope you watched last night and saw a real # 1 wr. Adams got a TD against a defender who fell down.
Seriously, how are you posting stories?

The lion HC correctly identifies the adams DROP as the key play of the game. The DROP!

that is two games Adams might have won by making plays. he did not make the plays. that is not on Rodgers or MM. Adams is not a # 1,period.

So you watched Hopkins make play after play, you watched Adams drop the game's most important play, you watched adams not fall down and you conclude adams is the guy?

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