Packers Vs. Chiefs - 3 Plays That Make You Go Hmmm

Jersey Al picks out three thought-provoking plays from the Packers' last game.

After re-watching the Packers game, here are three plays that made me go hmmm, for various reasons. In general, I try to focus on a theme, the less obvious, or things I didn't notice watching live. 

Unfortunately, I didn't have time to re-watch the entire game and prepare this article in time as I'll be in a dentist chair for most of Tuesday morning. So, instead, I'm going to pick 3 key plays from the game-opening touchdown drive and highlight them.

First Play - Much like last week against the Lions, the Packers come out and make a statement with their first play from scrimmage. In this case, they showed the Chiefs the type of plays they would use to hold the KC linebackers and cut back on blitzes throughout the game. This is a very clever fake requiring pinpoint precision as Reed and Dillon are criss-crossing paths. Dillon's action freezes the two unblocked Chiefs to the left of Rasheed Walker just long enough to allow Reed to run through the gap created by Kraft and Watson blocking out wide for a nice gain. The Packers would keep the Chiefs looking in the wrong direction all game with various motions and mis-directions. This particular play was run again on the next to last play of this drive from the seven yard line. This time Watson ran the jet sweep action but Dillon was given the ball and made it down to the one yard line.

 

Key 3rd down conversion - The Packers faced a key 3rd and four at the fourteen yard line. This play is so simple, it's something you never would have seen from the Packers last year. It's the type of play teams would run against the Green Bay defense for easy third down conversions. Just a simple bunch formation - Tucker Kraft and Christian Watson are the two front receivers and criss-cross. This pulls two defenders out with them. creating a nice little hole for WIcks to drop into for an easy completion. Key to making this so easy was Kraft heading in the direction of the third defender, not allowing him to get to Wicks in time. Easy peasy first down and the drive continues.

 

Touchdown! - I'm highlighting this for the play design and the amount of effort and detail made to fake out the Chiefs. The Packers bring in Royce Newman who declares as eligible and lines up next to Walker and Tucker Kraft is next to Newman. The fullback Pearson comes in and lines up in I formation with Dillon behind him.The ball is snapped, and Pearson and Dillon head towards that heavy left side. Love fakes a handoff to Dillon and hell, they even pull Runyan to the left to further convince the Chiefs the Packers are running to the left. Sims wants to pretend to block, but the LB charges around him, thinking he's going to crash down the LOS from the backside. It's an easy free release and TD catch for Sims. In addition Kraft also releases after fake blocking and if for some reason Sims got held up or was covered, Kraft gets an easy TD anyway. Perfection!

 

__________________________

"Jersey Al" Bracco is the Editor-In-Chief, part owner and wearer of many hats for CheeseheadTV.com and PackersTalk.com. He is also a recovering Mason Crosby truther.  Follow Al on twitter at @JerseyalGBP

12 points
 

Comments (30)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
SicSemperTyrannis's picture

December 05, 2023 at 03:19 pm

Another theme: Mike McCarthy used to script the opening plays to deliberately involve all the playmakers immediately. I forget the exact order but if you review that, it sure looked like MLF did exactly this!. Wicks didn't start but caught his first target, too. Doubs wasn't targeted until when, shortly before halftime? I have to think they bring Heath into the mix just to take some hits off the other receivers.

Hopefully the scheme and playcalling get just as much attention against the Giants ...

6 points
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DragonSilk's picture

December 05, 2023 at 03:37 pm

I think it's more likely they are just taking what the defense gives them. Waiting until half time to target Doubs can't be a preference.

9 points
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Packer_Fan's picture

December 05, 2023 at 03:26 pm

Good choices of plays. All positive probably because there were so many positive plays.

The one play that made me go Hmmm was the 3rd and 18 play. So passive. The Giants have announced the third string QB will start. No more passive and bend and don't break philosophy. No more rushing three with a good QB. No more light sets and get gashed by the opponent running game. No more playing off more than 10 yards on 3rd and 8. Play aggressive defense and go for the gusto. Don't let that third string QB get in a rhythm and beat us. Let;s see how far this team can go aggressively!

6 points
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croatpackfan's picture

December 06, 2023 at 03:52 am

I upvoted your comment. Still, you wrote "...and don't break philosophy.". So, you want Packers to adopt "break down" philosophy?

1 points
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splitpea1's picture

December 05, 2023 at 03:31 pm

My takeaways from this are: 1) the players are getting acclimated to the MLF system and are now sure of their assignments, and 2) because of this, MLF was confident and was able to use the extra time to devise an offensive game plan that would knock the Chiefs back on their heels. Starting the game off with two long offensive drives like that was very impressive.

Remember how lame and unimaginative the offense looked with extra time off against the Raiders and Broncos earlier? It took a few games, but we've really come a long way.

9 points
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MooPack's picture

December 05, 2023 at 03:32 pm

Such easy concepts, especially the last two. Where have they been the last couple of years? Has LaFleur finally figured out not to over complicate things. I sure hope so.

-1 points
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Packers0808's picture

December 05, 2023 at 04:00 pm

My bet those concepts were missing because of Rodgers!

5 points
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Packers0808's picture

December 05, 2023 at 04:32 pm

Thumbs down, still Have a Rodgers lover and ass kisser I see. He is gone and the team is better for it!

3 points
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White92's picture

December 05, 2023 at 05:35 pm

Oh I thought this was sarcasm. I'm not the thumbs down BTW

2 points
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T7Steve's picture

December 06, 2023 at 07:50 am

He didn't use these concepts much the first few games this season either.

I think he found his original 5-year-old playbook stuffed in a dark corner of a storage room file cabinet, blew off the dust and said, "Now it's time to go back to my roots!".

3 points
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PeteK's picture

December 05, 2023 at 05:06 pm

I guess when you have one of the best QB, WR, RB, LT, G a heavy misdirection scheme might not be needed as much. However, misdirection plays require lots of timing from many players and so must be worked on in practice. Not so simple in my opinion.

5 points
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MooPack's picture

December 05, 2023 at 08:22 pm

We ran that last play in Highschool. Highschool!! So, yes easy concept. Crash FB and RB into goal line. TE’s run same routes as you saw. I was one of TE’s. One of us was always open. Easy score. Never failed. Ever.

2 points
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crayzpackfan's picture

December 06, 2023 at 08:21 am

If done correctly, no can defend!

0 points
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LambeauPlain's picture

December 05, 2023 at 03:40 pm

I felt before the game the Pack matched up well with the Chiefs. Neither team runs nor defends against it very well but the wild card for me was how effective and efficient Love been with his receivers the over the last 4 games.

The Packers getting the ball to start the game was what I hoped for. The O is the Packers strength...lead with it to create momentum. They did not disappoint and nor surrender the lead after this first drive.

4 points
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TXCHEESE's picture

December 05, 2023 at 04:06 pm

Thanks Al. Hope the visit to the dentist turns out well. Motion and misdirection the entire game. They kept the linebackers eyes moving and allowed Love to get some idea of the coverage. Well played game by the entire team. I really appreciated how Dillon came out and moved the pile. Had a lot of very manageable 2nd and 3rd downs early on, thanks to AJ.

As the season progresses, MLF should be able to continue to add wrinkles off much of this stuff they've been running the last few weeks. You can just see the confidence growing with the young guys. GPG!

3 points
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Via.Lombardi's picture

December 05, 2023 at 04:51 pm

The Swift-Kelce thing is just a PR stunt for the ERAS concert movie.

4 points
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Bitternotsour's picture

December 05, 2023 at 05:30 pm

Taylor Swift is more popular than the NFL pally. The main difference is no one in Vegas has figured out how to wager on her.

5 points
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JerseyAl's picture

December 05, 2023 at 05:35 pm

Surprised there aren't odds on which Chiefs games she will show up at.

6 points
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Bitternotsour's picture

December 05, 2023 at 05:46 pm

You know Al, someone probably is making book on it. People will bet on anything.

3 points
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egbertsouse's picture

December 06, 2023 at 07:29 am

The entire NFL is a publicity stunt. This is a merger of two mega-successful brands.

3 points
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Bearmeat's picture

December 05, 2023 at 05:39 pm

You have to give credit where it's due: MLF has absolutely killed it with this young team. I believe we have a really good head coach. I have long thought this and that many of the head scratchers were 12 related decisions. But the growth of the young guns has convinced me.

All hail Gute and MLF!

5 points
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13TimeChamps's picture

December 05, 2023 at 06:35 pm

Totally agree. I've always been a huge Gute fan. A little less tepid on MLF to be honest. Definitely growing on me this year. He finally is no longer under the cloud of HC/GM/QBQ#12 to show his true vision. Looking good so far.

Good luck Aaron. How many of your friends that you insisted on bringing with you to NYJ are still on the team contributing meaningful minutes? That would be basically none. Good luck Jets fans with your new quasi/QB/GM.

What a breath of fresh air in Green Bay right now.

7 points
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coolhand's picture

December 06, 2023 at 05:44 am

I read a story about the former Packers on the Jets, Cobb has hardly played and Lazard, who is making $11 mil a year has more drops than any receiver in the league. Neither is making any difference for the Jets.

2 points
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13TimeChamps's picture

December 05, 2023 at 06:28 pm

An unrelated topic. Looks like the ARod/NYJets has hit a snag in their honeymoon season and moving forward:

https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/39048539/aaron-rodgers-defends-zach-...

2 points
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DFW_Pack64's picture

December 05, 2023 at 10:10 pm

LOL, Now he is the Jet Problem now with his kid like mouth.. GO PACK///////

1 points
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Since'61's picture

December 05, 2023 at 07:51 pm

Al great job as usual. IMO this was the first game that we actually watched what the MLF offense looks like. We've seen pieces of it here and there since he arrived in Green Bay and we've seen a few more pieces added this season. Speaking for myself this was the first time that MLF really opened up his play book since he's been here for an entire game.

But it's not the plays it's the players. Another way of saying it's not the play calls it's the execution and the Packers are finally reaching an NFL competitive level of execution. They still have a way to go but they have come a long way, particularly over the last 4-5 games. "Amateurs focus on play calling, professionals focus on execution." Mike Holmgren Thanks, Since '61

2 points
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T7Steve's picture

December 06, 2023 at 08:07 am

I'll repeat a comment I made last year or even further back "Amateurs practice till they get it right, professionals practice till they can't get it wrong." which I heard from my musician brother I'll call T3Gerry (T1 is dad, T2 is mom and so on).

0 points
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PearlyBakerBest's picture

December 05, 2023 at 08:35 pm

Youngest team in the league and all but even over the last five, at 4-1, they’re averaging nearly 7 penalties per game. 3rd most on the season. They’ve been playing better but if they’re going to make some noise in January, that has to improve.

2 points
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T7Steve's picture

December 06, 2023 at 08:10 am

What's bad is that that is an improvement on penalties but they're coming in spots where they haven't killed them as much. Less missed assignments too.

1 points
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Ferrari-Driver's picture

December 07, 2023 at 04:12 pm

Al, I always enjoy this segment and essentially any article you pen here is first on my reading list.

I was thinking earlier today that it is now 82 years to this day since our country was attacked and suffered the loss of life of well over 2000 American soldiers. It is merely one more reason I have the greatest respect for our soldiers who have fought in combat to keep us free. Sorry to go off topic but thought this is an important date in the history of our nation. I realize that we have a number of former soldiers who have served our country on this website and I thank each and every one of them for their service.

Few if any of us here were born on that date, but here is a short video of a speech give by then President Roosevelt after the attack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20EdYsKTO7s

0 points
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