Confessions of a Polluted Mindset - Passing the Bucs

The Weekly Packers Brain Drain from Jersey Al.

 

 

Special Teams Lesson Learned - I will NEVER, EVER again worry about or even think about how special teams look in the preseason. Have to keep reminding myself that two-thirds of the eventual roster won't even play in those games. 

Two Out of Three Ain't Bad... - The Bucs game unfolded a lot like the San Fran playoff game last year. The offense disappears and the defense keeps them in the game - just one main difference - special teams did not lose the game, they may actually have been the difference in bringing home a win. I had to read that back several times because it's just so hard to believe. The field position battle (something we Packers fans have forgotten all about because it would never favor the Packers) was incredibly lopsided in the Packers' favor.

Bad Situation - I maintain that the Packers' soft defensive approach in the final drive was ill-advised for two reasons; the amount of time left (over three minutes) and the opposing quarterback. If there were less time on the clock and a lesser quarterback, it might have been the right approach.

Rudy "the Flash"Ford - This guy must have superpowers. What other explanation is there for how he avoids the blockers and gets to the punt returner first EVERY time?

ADDENDUM:  I asked Eli Berkovitz, who did the Bakhtiari video at the end of this post, if he would do one of every Packers punt and he delivered:

 

Pinging the Punter - OK, so the Packers got called for running into the punter which cost them over 30 yards in field position and a probable field goal try at the very least. And we all saw what happened - Galeai was thrown into the punter, so it was a terrible call. But none of this matters. What matters is the Packers actually TRIED to go block a punt. When was the last time you remember them doing that?

No Two Points for You - An interesting story came out after the game that the Packers had practiced defending that exact play the Bucs ran during the week of practice. What got lost in the story was the fact that Savage was not supposed to be doing what he did (cover the receiver). However, he saw what was happening and realized no one was covering him, so he made a mad dash to get over there and was in a great position to make a play on the ball if Campbell doesn't get to the ball. Had he not, the receiver would have been all alone in the end zone. Heads up play by Savage.

No Adjusting to Adjustments - so Rodgers said the Bucs started playing more man and that's how they were successful shutting down the Packers offense (I'm paraphrasing the last part). So why didn't the Packers make their own chess move and adjust to their adjustments? Where were the bunch formations, rub routes, shallow crossers, passes to the RBs, etc. Lack of in-game adjustments is the main thing I always criticized MM for and I'd really hate to get to the same point with LaFleur.

How did Bakh look? - Well, thanks to Eli Berkovits, here's every David Bakhtiari snap from his return to the playing field.

 

__________________________

"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 (68)

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

September 28, 2022 at 06:34 am

With Bakh back (knock on wood), this offense could take off. Though I got really nervous when Hanson started warming up for Myers. If it happens, Hanson as center is going to cost them games.

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PewAuKeeFan's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:57 am

I heard the Myers went out because of cramps. The severe heat affected him.

Hopefully that should not happen again this year, we do not have any more games scheduled in such brutal weather again.

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Johnblood27's picture

September 28, 2022 at 12:15 pm

could the packers be this stupid?

Play Tom at center ahead of hanson.

sheesh, play coco ahead of hanson.

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LLCHESTY's picture

September 28, 2022 at 01:50 pm

On the days Bakhtiari and Jenkins are in practice I hope they are getting Tom reps at C and Jenkins some reps inside with Nijman at RT. If they're giving Jenkins rest days Nijman should be getting all the RT reps. I guess it would mean not giving them practice off on the same day but it's doable.

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NickPerry's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:04 am

"The Bucs game unfolded a lot like the San Fran playoff game last year. The offense disappears and the defense keeps them in the game."

I thought the same thing Al, even mentioned it in a comment on Monday. When Mercedes Lewis fumbled against the 49ers, the Packer's offense went into hiding. The same EXACT thing seemed to happen when Jones fumbled Sunday. I'm already getting nervous about MLF's ability to adjust. Hey when it's going good, it's great. But when a team adjusts to what you're doing, and the better teams always seem to do just that, I don't see the adjustments by MLF. I remember watching those Mike Holmgren coached teams. Whether it was an adjustment by him for the offense, or by Fritz Shurmer on defense, (What a GREAT DC) there was an adjustment coming at halftime or even mid-game.

I'm loving our special teams right now. Crosby's kicking the ball STRAIGHT, O'Connell is putting the ball inside the 20, and Rodgers hasn't done anything stupid and IMO has looked at least a little better. Nixon, Ford, and Leavitt have all made plays on ST. The blocking has also looked solid on the XP and FG attempts.

Bakhtiari looked great in his return Sunday. It couldn't have been easy playing in that heat for the first time in a year and 2nd time in 2 years. He looked a lot better than I thought he would. I can't wait for Jenkins to find his groove and then hopefully Zack Tom takes over the LG spot. Bakhtiari, Runyan, Meyers, TOM, and Jenkins are your best 5 IMO.

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Since'61's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:16 am

Great post Nick, as usual. Excellent point about Holmgren and Shurmer. They were great at making in game adjustments. Stay safe. Thanks, Since ‘61

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Guam's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:26 am

I had hoped that replacing Hackett and Getsy with Stenovich and Clements might spark some ability to make in-game offensive adjustments, but that hope is fading. I remember the Packers making in-game adjustments when Clements was previously part of the offensive brain trust, but perhaps he wasn't the originator of those adjustments.

Either the five guys that have constituted the Packers offensive brain trust over the past three plus years are not very creative or MLF is just plain stubborn and overly confident in his pre-game plan. Hard to believe they can't see the need to make adjustments, but either they can't or won't. And that seriously endangers the chance of getting to a Super Bowl.

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Since'61's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:07 am

Al great article as usual.

Agree completely on the STs. I posted earlier this week that our punter deserves a game ball. His punting and great coverage (by Ford) helped us win the field position battle and ultimately the game.

I don’t understand the lack of adjustments in the second half. I must admit that I was a little surprised that Rodgers did go rogue at some point.

The officials should have picked up the flag on running into the punter. It was a bad call. They should have huddled up and reversed it.

I have always hated soft coverage and prevent defenses. Late in a close game is the exact time to pressure the QB and hit receivers at the LOS to slow them down or knock them off their routes. Why make it easy for the opponent to move the ball???

Savage and Campbell did a great job on the 2 point attempt.

Thanks for including the clips of Bak’s snaps. He looks pretty solid after all the time he has missed. Great to see him back out there.

GPG! Thanks, Since ‘61

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T7Steve's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:36 am

Can you look at that running into the kicker again? I forgot to record the game. I remember at the time that I thought they didn't pick up the flag because another Green Bay player threw him into the punter, but, not sure.

May be Savage is getting back into form. I was worried about him and Amos. Let's get some more turnovers and pick sixes.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:08 am

He was pushed in by a Tampa player primarily. There another Packer in there but it’s ultimately a Buc who alters his trajectory.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:05 am

The lack of adjustment is somewhat of a mischaracterization. We in fact shortened our routes and became much more timid. That may be simply reversion to the norm by LaFleur when under pressure, but it’s a change in approach nonetheless.

LaFleur put us in a hole with his actives. We know, and he’s said, how valuable MVS was against this D because he forced them to stay deeper than 10 yards. We know that they will be able to significantly restrict one receiver and still swarm the short areas. We saw that from Bowles and also the 49ers with Adams (and particularly with no MVS).

Yes we sit and throw 5 yards, let them pressure at will and are surprised when it causes issues on our O Line. It shouldn’t be allowed to get to the point where they are that comfortable ignoring the threat of a ball behind them. Yet this is what we have seen many times before from LaFleur. We should have left Winfree on the PS and had Toure out there. He tracks the ball well. If Doubs is double covered, send him deep. Don’t use Cobb and don’t rely on Lazard. That’s not his strength. Don’t limit it to a couple of throws a half.

Force them to cover the rest of the field. Doing so allows Lazard to come into the game more and may open Doubs. Heck, let Doubs see if he can beat his markers in a go or deep cross too. If they have to account for that, our run game and passes to runners also gets revitalized. This is the same LaFleur failing we’ve seen many times, and while Rodgers inclinations may play into it, the personnel choices and posts called as illustrated by routes run are pretty conclusive proof it’s LaFleur in large part.

This is why we lose against good teams and why teams know how to shut us down. You can pretty much bet other teams now try the same thing. They aren’t all as good on D as Tampa, but they will know that they can capitalize on LaFleur’s predictability and timidity to neutralize the pass game while they stymie the run as effectively as possible.

We cannot be that passive and win our way to the Super Bowl. Cobb and Lazard can contribute, but we need to go youth early and often if we are to have a chance to win it all. We need speed and separation and some simple ambition to unlock that. It’s criminal using Watson as we have, not using Toure at all and Doubs ending up with 3 yards as an average depth of target. It’s safe but it’s playing for mediocrity in a year where that makes zero sense. If we paid Rodgers for this, we wasted our money, and that’s not a knock on his abilities.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 28, 2022 at 03:21 pm

Pure gold CW. They'll make adjustments but they will be forced into them because of injury. No doubt It's like pulling teeth. As you said the use of Watson,Dobbs and Toure is absurd. Wouldn't this last game have been a perfect time to use Toure,, instead of that predictable token use of Winfrey? And as you pointed out such timid conservative approach with the weapons at his disposal.

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Guam's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:15 am

Mike Pereira made an on-air comment that a defender can not be penalized for roughing the kicker if he is blocked or thrown into the punter, but he can be called for running into the kicker even if he is blocked or thrown into the punter. I tried to look up definitions of the penalty and none I saw went into enough depth to clarify that point.

If Pereira is correct and I assume he is, the refs could not have picked up the flag even if the Packer defender was thrown into the punter. Apparently, it is the defender's responsibility to avoid the kicker regardless of the activities of others. Don't like that concept, but that seems to be how the rule is interpreted.

Would love to hear from others who are more knowledgeable than me on this issue.

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Starrbrite's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:21 am

I’ve witnessed in past games the penalty NOT enforced (flag picked up) because the defender was blocked/thrown into the punter.

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Guam's picture

September 28, 2022 at 11:33 am

I have too Starrbrite, but I just can't remember whether it was for roughing the kicker or running into the kicker (old and feeble memory). And that distinction is vital according to the rule. See the discussion between CW and myself in this same thread.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:51 am

It can not be roughing if “(f) [contact] occurs because a defender is pushed or blocked (causing a change of direction) into the kicker.” Therefore that should not have been called roughing under any circumstances.

If it’s not roughing, there is no automatic first down, just a 5 yard advance. The rules there are much less clear.

“Running into the Kicker. It is a foul for running into the kicker if a defensive player:
(a) contacts the kicking foot of the kicker, even if the kicker is airborne when the contact occurs; or
(b) slides under the kicker, preventing him from returning both feet to the ground.”

I’m not sure either a or b applied here in fact. There is no specific exception for being pushed into the kicker though. As with so many NFL rules, it may come down to changes in Interpretative guidelines.

My best understanding is that that impact definitely wasn’t roughing and probably wasn’t within the scope of protecting the plant leg intended for running in to, even if there is no specific exception for being pushed into contact.

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Guam's picture

September 28, 2022 at 11:28 am

You ran into the same issue I did CW. There is a specific prohibition against calling roughing the kicker if the defender is pushed or blocked (causing a change of direction) into the kicker. However there is no similar prohibition against calling running into the kicker if the defender is pushed or blocked into the kicker.

Pereira interpreted that to mean running into the kicker must be called regardless of how the defender was caused to hit the kicker. Given his prior status as a senior rules official for the NFL, I assume he is correct and the current interpretation of the rule is that running into the kicker must be called regardless of how the contact is initiated.

I don't like that interpretation and wish there was a similar prohibition for running into the kicker as there is for roughing the kicker. However apparently not so........

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 06:53 pm

The league issues interpretations each year. I’m sure pereira has access to them. The rules themselves say as quoted and no more on point. The running into rule is designed to prevent the punter being unable to land reasonably and to prevent an impact on his plant, non kicking leg, while locked in the turf. (NFL explanation). I personally don’t think that justifies the call here, but it is a much grayer area.

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dje's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:18 am

Great article again, Jersey Al! I hope we do not get to the point that the Packers default to not making adjustments during the game. It seems to be an emerging trend. The coaching staff needs to adjust. Rogers needs to adjust. The lack of adjustment almost cost them the game. We have a long way to go so I hope we can anticipate what will happen and adjust accordingly.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 28, 2022 at 03:09 pm

Emerging trend? It's been a constant for longer than I want to remember. It is our Achilles heel.

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croatpackfan's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:24 am

Al, as always very interesting points you are pointing to. Some was already discussed here on this page, but your insight looks me each time you posted it more supported by arguments.

When Henson replace Myers I was screaming Nooooooo at my TV, but it looks like to me he played his snaps OK. Last sack on AR was not his fault, but Newman was beaten by man who was his responsibilty.

O'Donnell looks much improved than I can remember him from the time he was Bear. After all he is the second Bear for decade or more who is signed with Packers and what to say - both (he and Julius) was/is game changers.

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T7Steve's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:38 am

Don't forget Amos.

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PatrickGB's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:47 am

Like you, I bemoaned the insertion of Hanson at center. Yet, he did ok. Not great but ok. Perhaps that’s why he is still on the team. The backup center is practically a guaranteed spot.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:11 am

Hanson played 3 snaps. I don’t think one can realistically draw to much from that sample.

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croatpackfan's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:21 am

You are right Coldworld, but in previous games, it was 1 snap enough to show his incompetence at RG. I believe you'll agree with that mark.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:54 am

He didn’t give up a sack or pressure every play at G. It could have been worse, but assuming that he was not a contributing factor in the sack, he really only had 2 plays to survive.

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HawkPacker's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:27 am

'No Adjusting to Adjustments '. I have been preaching that for some time now. Lafleur even stated as much a day or so ago when he talked of doing the same thing again and again and waiting for some success. This is like bumping your head against the wall. Instead of waiting, why not make an adjustment. Other teams will continue to make adjustments and I don't understand why we can't, unless of course, we just plain don't get it.

Love the timing of being able to read this article as it is my favorite of the week. I need time away from the Weather Channel as my home in Fort Myers, FL is going to get hammered soon. Thank God we are still up north but I am hoping and praying for friends and family in the sunshine state that they get through this storm with their lives. Property damage is going to be great but, of course, the lives of so many is so much more important!

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T7Steve's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:40 am

Prayers for all down there. Hope everyone stays safe and you don't have property damage.

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Since'61's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:16 am

Hawkpacker - Best wishes for a good outcome. Good luck and stay safe. Thanks, Since ‘61

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HawkPacker's picture

September 29, 2022 at 09:32 am

Just received word that our home in Fort Myers, FL has survived with only minimal screen damage to the lanai. Thanks for your thoughts and prayers. Following are some pictures and videos of the area if anyone cares to watch. Thanks again to all of you posters.

https://www.fox13news.com/weather/hurricane-ian-storm-surge-damage-fort-...

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Razer's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:29 am

Definitely a jekyll and hyde performance. There was a lot of good particularly in the first half. Got to love Doubs. He is going to be a stud. The efforts of Lazard and Cobb need to be applauded - exactly what we need from our veteran WRs. I know that the offense disappeared, we've seen this happen many times before in big games. Defensive adjustments, no play calling adjustments, poor decision making by our quarterback - take your pick. I am going to throw 'poor O-line play' into the mix. The Bucs front four controlled the LOS, shutdown any run game and collapsed the pocket repeatedly. Poor O-line play has been part of every major loss. Yes we have injuries, but it doesn't matter against good D-lines. We are a 'B' grade line at best with weak interior line play and it is the death of our RBs. Our O-line was very much like the Bucs O-line and even the great Tom Brady couldn't overcome that.

I do like what Special teams is doing. Punting and trapping the opponent deep was the story of the game. Other than offensive miscues, the Bucs had to travel the full field on most possessions. O'Donnell is the real deal - thanks Chicago. On defense, I like this Keisean Nixon kid. He stepped up nicely. We are going to need some depth in the secondary. I fear that Alexander may be the new Casey Hayward,

I propose that we bundle up all our TEs and trade them for a new Jacuzzi tub for Christian Watson's rehabs. Does this offense use tight ends - other than to support the O-line? It would be nice to see a TE with burst that could open up the middle of the field. Tyler Davis did have a nice delay catch and run. We just don't see much TE in the Rodgers offense.

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Eric Zenk's picture

September 28, 2022 at 06:12 pm

The O-line played very good while Bak, Runyon, Myers, Newman and Jenkins were on the field, and MLF used the run or rather Rodgers used the RPO option more often than not, and he got the ball out quick resulting in 14 points with possibly another 3 or 7 if Jones had not fumbled.

I know Jones got hit in the back, but he's fumbled against Tampa before when he's tackled by two players so he should be ready for those Bucs hits. The Packers, not the Bucs controlled both LOSs on offense and defense until late in the 2nd quarter.

After Myers and Bak went out their play suffered. Just for information purposes, the Bucs were the number one defense going into this game so it doesn't matter how good your o-line is - just ask New Orleans - supposedly a top 5 O-line and Tampa made them look like a college o-line.

Add to that the Bucs were at home for their home opener, you must give credit where it's due. B grade at best for the o-line? Not according to Pro Football Focus. Weak interior line play? What game where you watching? Yes they missed some blocks and assignments and the play suffered when Myers and Bak left, but overall against that defense, they played well. The Packers starting five of Bak, Runyon, Myers, Newman and Jenkins are at least a top 10 O-line. Have you watched some of the O-line play by other teams this season? I have the Sunday ticket and do. Some of those lines are painful to watch and make me glad the Packers have the O-line they do. The only exception or change to this Packers O-line I'd make is removing Newman. If Tom elevates his play and is bigger and stronger, he should replace Newman as someone already mentioned.

I guess everyone has a opinion, but some here post based on facts and others.....?

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

September 29, 2022 at 04:28 am

Myers missed 3 snaps, two if one excludes the kneel down. Citing the absence of Myers as a fact though it was technically correct is not a reason to excuse GB's offense, which is 27th in the NFL.

Bakh alternated series with Nijman. He didn't leave the game permanently. As Bakh and Jenkins gain reps and time, they should get better. Certainly there is hope for this offensive line to improve. Runyan seems to have forgotten how to play.

TB is a good defense. Number one by points per game and number 4 by yards. Then again, they've played the 30th, 27th and 22nd ranked offenses by points so far. The Packers' defense is ranked 6th in points and yards, but they've played the 17th, 20th, and 23rd ranked offenses by points so far this season. The 9th ranked offense is scoring 26.7 points per game, and the 10th is scoring 21.3. There are a lot of bad offenses so far in the NFL.

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T7Steve's picture

September 29, 2022 at 07:48 am

Aren't those offenses averages down because they played a good defense? Tampa's numbers are down because they faced the Saints' D along with the Packers. Don't you think those averages will change drastically this early in the season? Like getting 4 hits in your first 10 at bats.

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ricky's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:34 am

Two takeaways from your article. The first, why was there an uncovered receiver in the end zone on a crucial attempt at a two point conversion? The same thing happened several times in the Minny game, when Jefferson found himself uncovered at least three times. Are the coverage schemes too complicated? Are the players not being correctly coached? Is there a communication problem between the sidelines and the players? Whatever the problem, time to address it. Second, the lack of adjustments by LaFleur is something that has been noticeable since he became head coach, If the defense makes changes to stop the Packers offense, he seems to be unable to make his own adjustments to counter those moves. Why this happens is up for debate, but the results in the playoffs, in particular, are discouraging. And maddening.

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T7Steve's picture

September 28, 2022 at 07:49 am

Do you remember when the last game was that the O played for more then 2 quarters and boat raced a team? Even in 2020 they weren't making adjustments. They were just better in the red/gold zone and scoring touchdowns (usually early in the game) instead of field goal tries.

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TXCHEESE's picture

September 28, 2022 at 08:46 am

There are going to be very few occurrences of ANY team running up and down the field on TB. They have an extremely talented and well coached defense. I am a little concerned about the lack of adjustments, but if AJ holds on to that ball, this would have been a completely different game. I didn't think the tight end production was really that bad, considering the coverage abilities of the ILB's on their defense. With Dbak again in the line up, the play book will expand, along with the opportunities of the young WR's.

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T7Steve's picture

September 28, 2022 at 02:45 pm

I understand about Tampa. Still just trying to remember a time. Matt Flynn game?

Do remember an early Thanksgiving Detroit game. I'm supposed to drink a beer for every touchdown and think I passed out by half time. Rodgers couldn't miss. Now I'd like a game that's not like an AA meeting.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

September 29, 2022 at 04:31 am

Agreed. GB is 9th in rushing yards per game, 19th in passing yards per game, and 27th in points scored per game. Red zone and 3rd down conversion rates aren't so hot.

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PeteK's picture

September 28, 2022 at 08:31 am

Recent descriptions of Ford's ability as a gunner: dipping shoulder to avoid contact, fight through by swiping away opponents hands, good tackling technique by tracking the inside hip of ball carrier, uses jab steps and head fakes to get free from blockers, speed/strenght ( 4.3 speed, 20 rep bench press).

5 points
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RCPackerFan's picture

September 28, 2022 at 08:33 am

Special Teams Lesson Learned -
Can you remind me next year so I don't be freaking out.

Two Out of Three Ain't Bad... -
It really doesn't make sense to read it, but it is infact exactly what happened. After the fumble the offense just lost momentum and gave it all to the Bucs.
Special teams was the difference in this game. And if it wasn't for a missed holding call and changed to a horrible running into the kicker call, we likely score more points there.

Bad Situation -
I hated how they played the final 3 minutes. Essentially they were playing for the 2 point conversion. I get they don't want to give up something deep. But can't they play the safety's deeper and have the CB's playing up more. Sorry but the CB's don't need to be 10 yards off the ball. I just don't like how they play one way until the final drive and then play a different way allowing them to come back.

Rudy "the Flash"Ford -
This may have been Gutey's best move this year. Ford has been outstanding as a gunner.

Pinging the Punter -
That play could have been the game changing play in the game. Luckily our defense and special teams shut it down. That being said, the bad officiating could have changed the game. Refs have to be better!

No Two Points for You -
Savage got himself into perfect position! If Campbell doesn't make that play Savage does. It was a hell of a play by both players.

No Adjusting to Adjustments -
There were some penalties that they weren't able to overcome on a few of those drives. Some really bad calls too. The one on Lazard was a horrible call.

How did Bakh look? -
I really am happy with Yosh. Like he has been very good. He would be a starting OT on most teams in this league. But Bakhtiari is just better. I truly believe had he been able to play in either of the last 2 playoffs, we win those games. He makes that much of a difference.
Next question is who are our top 5 guys? Bakhtiari, Jenkins, Myers, Runyan are likely our best 4. After that Yosh, Newman, Tom are in the running for the 5th spot. What is our lineup on the OL?
Bakhtiari, Runyan, Myers, Tom, Jenkins? I personally prefer this lineup. Newman will likely continue to be our RG, but he is our weaklink imo. PFF also agrees as he has the lowest grade on our OL.

3 points
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croatpackfan's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:16 am

RCPF what you think about Bakh, Jenkins, Myers, Runyan & Yosh?

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Starrbrite's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:24 am

That’s the lineup I would use.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:59 am

Croat. That is another lineup I would use. I honestly think it would probably be our true best 5. Or for experience and whatnot, the best 5 we could do.

The biggest reason why I went the way I did was so that you would then only make 1 player change. Going from Newman to Tom. Everyone else stays where they are used to. Also, I think the value in having Yosh to come in off the bench at any point and play either OT is a huge bonus. With Yosh they don't have to move players around and immediately have a player that comes in and you don't miss a beat. If your lineup is the starting 5, if there is an injury to OT, then Jenkins is likely moving out to OT and you have to bring someone in to play OG. Its just a lot of moving pieces.

I know they will keep putting Newman out there. I just think with Tom is a guy that will get better the more he plays.

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MarkinMadison's picture

September 28, 2022 at 08:51 am

1) The prevent defense doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. First of all, it seems to have rarely worked. I wish someone would run the stats, but I can't remember the last time a prevent defense by the Packers actually stopped the opposing team from scoring. Admittedly, I don't have the kind of memory where bunches of plays and games stick in my head, but really, someone, please show me I'm wrong. If not, all you are doing is draining the clock and keeping the offense from having an opportunity. I get that the WR crops was decimated this weekend, but #12 has been pretty good at the two-minute drill over the years. So stop messing with a defense that doesn't really work, play ball, and if they score anyway give your O more time to work with, please.

2) The lack of in-game adjustments on both sides of the ball is worrying. I gave MLF a pass the first couple of years because I thought, "New coach, learning curve." He needs to grow past that now. Clearly he will never be the B-Chick in NE, but he can do a lot better.

3) I'll disagree with JerseyAl when he says "Ignore pre-season Special Teams." I think that misses the real issue. Special Teams looked bad against the Vikings and not much better last week. This week, against the Bucs, dare I say it, they actually looked really good. And yes, I had literally forgotten about the importance of the field position game because GB has been soooo bad at it for soooo long. So the real issue is that under Coach B-Cha in GB, Special Teams are actually getting BETTER week-to-week. Cool.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:26 am

Prevent D isn’t a scheme intended to prevent scoring. It’s designed to minimize big plays and primarily to slow the opponent. We have too much talent in coverage to need it in my view, but against Brady, if you do use it, it can’t extend to the front.

If we had had Smith and Gary etc pressuring Brady at full tilt then maybe it is a ploy, but if you back off Brady, he excels at finding the space left open for big chunks. He is not the only QB that can do that either, but he gets it done faster more and clinically and thus negates the point of the strategy and has done for years.

One other reason for prevent late in games is stamina. I think that this gets overlooked in the context of the Tampa game. We were probably running on empty up front in particular. That D spent so much time on the field and playing hard as a result if the inept offensive calling in that half.

3 points
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jannes bjornson's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:56 am

It worked in Tom Landry's time when you could bump and run; aggressively press the WRs. The Packer safeties have to pick up their game, too much peaking in the backfield instead of flow to the receiver.

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MarkinMadison's picture

September 28, 2022 at 12:57 pm

"It’s designed to minimize big plays and primarily to slow the opponent."

That is my point though. I don't think we WANT to slow the other team down (normally). If that is all it accomplishes, then I think it is a mistake to use it.

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Rarescope's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:52 am

"1) The prevent defense doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. First of all, it seems to have rarely worked."

I hear ya, it's frustrating to watch but we won the game so... maybe it did work? \/''\/

3 points
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MarkinMadison's picture

September 28, 2022 at 12:55 pm

Well, they scored a touchdown. It was the red zone defense on the two-point conversion that won the game.

1 points
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jannes bjornson's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:53 am

Tampa's best two WRs were not playing. Brady was targeting Gage all day, where was the bracket coverage?
The secondary has been playing w/out Flow from Game One onward. Too many times Campbell was covering the hot read on third down plays. I am still skeptical regarding Barry's acumen. Have to hope Alexander gets back on the turf. Nixon was solid in nickel. They just don't have the dynamic TE to make teams pay when the
opponents flood the front end. If Jones doesn't drop the rock it would have been a different second half of football.

2 points
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murf7777's picture

September 28, 2022 at 08:52 am

Thanks for the video on Bak, I thought he played very good on both run and pass, especially for his first game back. Not much rust there.

2 points
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pacman's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:00 am

We were lucky to win that game. After all the bad 'luck' over the last few years, we deserve some. Yes, the D kept us in it and almost lost it when Barry started playing like he didn't trust his guys anymore. But without the unbelievable delay of game penalty on the 2 pointer, do we win?

ST - until we win the SB again, I'm not forgiving Gute or MLF for not realizing how important a good ST coach is. We could have easily had at least 2 more SB appearances with AR if not for ST.

Of course I'm not happy about the lack of offensive adjustments, but I point out AR's comment after the game that he thought he liked the play calls they just messed up the execution a bit. So maybe MLF gets a bit of a pass here. But he is still on my watch list.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:28 am

You can blame Gute for the fact that he’s never had a plus returner, but Gute doesn’t hire coaches. That’s LaFleur.

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PatrickGB's picture

September 28, 2022 at 09:55 am

Matt admitted that he learned a lot about ST’s after the hire. My guess is that the front office kinda forced Rich on him. We are also lucky that he was available. One downside is that it changed his practice schedule and may have contributed to the injuries to a few hammys.

-1 points
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dobber's picture

September 28, 2022 at 11:44 am

"After all the bad 'luck' over the last few years, we deserve some. "

The Packers' regular-season record in 1-score games over the LaF era--
2022: 1-0
2021: 6-3 (remember Cleveland, AZ, Bal?)...0-1 playoffs
2020: 4-2...0-1 playoffs
2019: 7-1...1-0 playoffs

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Doug_In_Sandpoint's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:30 am

Our gunners look like they’ve been watching Davante film on how to get off the line. One-on-one, they were almost never even touched. Only when they were double teamed vs. the Bucs did they get slowed down. Awesome!

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Leatherhead's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:56 am

Special Teams: Through three games last year, the special teams hadn't lost us a game and won a road game in SF with a last second FG. Through three games this year, the special teams hasn't lost us a game. It LOOKS better. But the fundamental, unchanging reality is that the special units are largely composed of 23 year olds who think lighting farts is fun. You have to be semi-nuts to go charging downfield against a bunch of large strong men trying to knock your block off, but being semi-nuts does have a downside. You are ALWAYS going to have mistakes, or a shaky call by an official. You are going to turn it over on returns. It's going to happen.

We LOOK better. The Long Snapper situation looks better. The holder/punter looks like a big upgrade. We haven't had a turnover yet, or a long return against us. We've already had some penalties. If you think it'll get better than this, I think you're going to be disappointed. It's not a question of if, it's a question of when. Hopefully, not in the playoffs.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Nobody likes the soft, prevent defense. But coaches keep going to it. Why?

Then I try to remember the last time we lost a game because we played a soft defense with a lead. I don't think it's happened with LaFleur. None of our playoff losses were because of that, and I don't think any of our regular season losses were because of that. It has made games closer than they'd have to be, and we damn near lost this one because of that strategy,but the bottom line is we didn't, and we haven't yet. So I am forced to agree with the Conventional Wisdom on this, because it works. I don't like it, but that doesn't matter.

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dobber's picture

September 28, 2022 at 11:53 am

"Nobody likes the soft, prevent defense. But coaches keep going to it. Why?"

I think you're intending this as a rhetorical question, but in this day of analytics, it must be holding up that the prevent works and is a path to win.

You're up 8 points with a little over 3 minutes to go and TB has the ball on their own, what, 11 yardline? There's a lot that needs to go right for TB, even with the Packers in prevent, for TB to force a tie, which is the worst possible immediate outcome of that drive. If the Packers are up 7 or even 6, they might play that differently. In the end, it worked out.

1 points
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Leatherhead's picture

September 28, 2022 at 12:42 pm

Not rhetorical. I actually think people should ask that question, because it leads to the answer you've given: Analytically, it's your best bet.

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jlc1's picture

September 28, 2022 at 10:57 am

MLF takes a lot of heat here for abandoning the run too early. MLF takes a lot of heat here for not making adjustments. Changing the mix of plays sounds a lot like an adjustment to me so he is kind damned if he does and damned if he doesn't. That said it does seem like some suggestions here speak to adjustments being more subtle, like the rub roots. We did though see some of those and I loved the one where Lazard decked his back to free Doubs or Tonyan I think. In the end there may be very few viable adjustments against a defense that owns the LOS the way TB did in the second half.

-1 points
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dobber's picture

September 28, 2022 at 11:54 am

We also have the world's smartest QB under center and with significant latitude to audible out of plays. Admittedly, he can only work with the personnel package on the field, but there's plenty of fingers to point if we're concerned with the play call on the field.

2 points
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T7Steve's picture

September 28, 2022 at 12:38 pm

Speaking of audibles; Do you know why we had to waste a time out (or got a delay) because they sent the wrong person on the field? Why didn't Rodgers just call a play that would work for the people they sent?

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Leatherhead's picture

September 28, 2022 at 12:40 pm

In my experience, most plays work if you execute them. IMO, it's not so much the play that you call, but how you execute it that matters.

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Coldworld's picture

September 28, 2022 at 06:59 pm

You are Mike McCarthy aren’t you!

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

September 29, 2022 at 05:09 am

Obviously this is true, but it is by definition. If everyone executes = if every player follows his assignment and wins his individual battle, the play will always work unless the defensive call is perfect in that it provides one more player in the right spot than the offense is expecting to be there.

LH, I've had this argument with Since '61 going all the way back to ALLGBP dot com days. Obviously the play design and calling is inextricably entwined with players executing/winning or at least not losing their individual battles.

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LLCHESTY's picture

September 28, 2022 at 02:06 pm

Obviously you don't want to blitz on every play of an end of the game drive but I also don't think you can let the QB get comfortable either.

I'll say it again green dog blitzing is the way to go in that situation. Fournette is going to be in to block and only go out for a catch as a last second leaker. That's the perfect time to green dog blitz and make it 5 rushers on 6 blockers. Another option is to go with a 3 man front and send a blitzer or two. Yet another option is to go with a Mint Front with Walker as the single Edge rusher and then you have the option of dropping him into coverage and sending a blitzer. All of these can be done without being down a man in coverage and could cause a half second of hesitation.

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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

September 29, 2022 at 11:36 am

Watching the video of Bachtiari was good. Hopefully he continues to improve and return to his former level of play. It would seem impossible but time will tell. Three knee surgeries and being over 30-years old does not typically bode well. Fingers crossed!

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