Green Bay Packers 24 – 42 Washington Redskins
While Sam is off furthering his education, Jordan and Brian tag-teamed this week’s Post Game Play Action. We’ll do our best not to be too bleak, but we make no promises.
What a national audience got to see last night is what we Packer fans have been getting quite accustomed to over the past few weeks; an offense that doesn’t start playing until the other team has been spotted at least a two possession lead, a defense that is incapable of making big plays when they’re called upon to do so and a special teams unit that can seemingly be counted on for a couple gaffes every week.
Add all of these components together and what you have is a team that has no legitimate shot at January football.
On the other side of the ball, there we’re left with very few positives to speak of. Obviously, injuries have played a considerable role in weakening this defense. Even in tonight’s game, we saw Demetri Goodson, Kentrell Brice, and Blake Martinez all spend time laying on the turf. With all of that said, this is still a defense with six first round picks playing significant time for this team. And their performance isn’t even close to being acceptable.
The 2016 season is slipping right through the Packers’ fingers.
Pick a catch by Jared Cook
Tight end Jared Cook flashed some serious ability last night. In his return from injury, he pulled in 6 catches – including a couple deep balls – for 105 yards and a touchdown. His ability to stretch the field as a tight end could prove very valuable for this team moving forward. His deep catches stretched out the defense and opened things up for Rodgers, who had a fantastic second half.
70 yard TD to Garcon (turning point)
Rodgers had just thrown a touchdown on a screen pass to James Starks, and we started to think that maybe the Packers would at least make a close game of it. They pulled within one possession. Well, right on cue, we were treated to a 2 play, 70 yard touchdown “drive” for the Redskins. Garcon might as well have been left uncovered. A great throw over the top of single coverage was the dagger in last night’s contest.
Cook Fumble – Nail in the coffin
Last night showcased exactly why the Packer fan base had mixed emotions on the signing of Jared Cook in the off season. There was plenty of talk about his athleticism, size, speed and ability. Then there was talk of drops, fumbles and a lack of focus. We saw plenty of the good side of Cook last night, but his night ended with a preview of an issue that has plagued his career. Credit to Josh Norman for punching the ball out in an uncanny impression of Charles Woodson.
Overall, Cook did far more good than harm last night, but this play – along with several others – sealed the Packers fate. The rest of the season will be an audition for Cook, who signed a one-year deal this summer.
Ty Montgomery Player of the Week Award
This one was pretty easy. I might have gone with Jared Cook had he not fumbled the ball late in the game. That leaves me with one option – Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers did his best to keep his team in the game throwing for 351 yards and 3 touchdowns. Meanwhile, his defense allowed 42 points and three long touchdown drives in the 4th quarter.
How deflating must it have felt to lead those touchdown drives only to have the defense give up three straight quick touchdown drives to destroy any hope that Rodgers was giving them? Rodgers put forth a valiant effort, but when 351 yards and 3 touchdowns from QB1 means an 18 point loss, what more can the guy do?
- It is not my intention to be the bearer of bad news, Packers fans, but the Packers season is virtually over now. After seeing the Vikings and Lions attain victories and widen the distance between first and third place, this was a game the Packers absolutely had to have.
- Of all the aspects of this team that could be critiqued, the play of Aaron Rodgers is far down the list. After the first three drives of the game produced nothing, the offense was able to move the ball down the field effectively. The return of Jared Cook proved to be a shot in the arm for this offense and showed what this passing game has been missing. Save for the fumble at the end (which was much more of a good defensive play by Josh Norman than a poor offensive one by Cook), Cook was very impressive.
- Even the offensive line – our most consistent unit this year – struggled last night. Granted, things got better once Don Barclay’s injury forced him to the sideline, but how many times did you see Ryan Kerrigan go untouched toward Rodgers. He would have had 3-4 sacks last night if Rodgers wasn’t so damn slippery. That Lang injury hurt them significantly.