Thursday, September 20, 2007

My Take - Week 3


Welcome to the first time readers. I'm happy that the take is spreading and people enjoy it. If others want in, let me know. Also, I appreciated the responses. It keeps me motivated. Pat Rad - I'm glad that the G-Force is representing Chi-town, brother! Russ, glad you are feelin' it! And to the Bears fans that responded in classic Bear form - envy is the ugliest of things...I'd urge you to refrain from looking at yourself in the mirror.

We look good. We feel good. We're playing good. We're 2-0, baby!

Seeing "149" was an absolute treat. Giants Stadium was a blast. The G-Force brought its effect to the game. And yes, we made an impact both in the parking lot and inside the stadium. It was a great victory!

It was fun to see our O-Line rise to the occasion. College seemed to grow as the game went on. He started off well in the run game, but looked rough against the pass. In the 2nd half, I thought his protection was a vital component to the Favre's accuracy. And Wynn's big run was right behind College. In the past, we've liked to run right. So far, this year, our successes have come behind the left side.

Who would have thought that Tracy White would make game changing plays in each of the Packers first 2 games? Hell, I did not think he would make the team. But, two weeks in a row at the bottom of the scrum, Tracy White came up with the football. Once for 6 points against the Eagles. And then the fumble recovery last week led to the touchdown that essentially sealed the victory. Cheers to Tracy White.

I give massive credit to our coaching staff. Our bend but don't break defense has been exactly what we hoped for thus far. We've been able to get adequate pressure without the blitz and Bob Sanders, the Defensive Coordinator, has been patient. We've yet to push the panic button as the opposition was moving the ball.

Setting the stage - the Packers are 2-0. On the offensive side of the ball, Greg Jennings has yet to play. Vernand Morency has not seen a down. We expect Koren Robinson back sometime in October. That's firepower waiting in the wings.

On the defensive side of the ball, Cullen Jenkins does not have a sack. KGB has yet to record one either. Ryan Pickett has been pushed around. AJ Hawk has been average. Chuckie Woodson has yet to make a play. Al Harris has been only an image of himself. Defensively, big plays are soon to happen.

On special teams, Willie B. is almost recovered from his broken wrist and in the very near future, he'll be a valuable weapon returning punts. If he's returning punts for 12 games this year, I'd be surprised if he did not take one to the house. More momentum in the Packers favor.

For the most part, the right guys are on the field right now. And they have done enough to win 2 games against NFC opponents. We'll remember that 12 weeks from now when we are outlining our playoff outlook. I'm calling for Justin Harrell to be active this week. I've had enough with Colin Cole. I'd look to trade him for a 6th/7th round pick. We're constructing a team that is sustainable. Built to Last. Harrell is a big part of what we are building. Let's get him snaps and NFL experience.

This week - the Chargers come to town. The philosophy for this week is stolen from the Fab 5 - "Let your nuts hang!" I encourage the G-Force to bring the noise. It's a Milwaukee crowd - and frankly, that scares me. If you're going to the game, bring your voice. If you're sitting at home or at a sports bar, the Lambeau Gods can still hear you.

In order to win this week, the Packers are going to have to play with a carefree mentality. Leave everything on the field. Have some fun. Enjoy the moment. And think about dominating a team that believes they can walk all over you. This game requires high energy.

Traditionally, we've struggled against the 3-4. In fact, the last time I remember a solid offensive performance was against a 3-4 defense was in 2001against the Baltimore Ravens. This includes preseason games. Normally, we've struggled to run the ball. We've had a miserable time in pass protection. And it seemed like we've never gained control of the game.

Therefore, if I were coach, the first 15 plays would all be passes. To maximize protection, each play would be run out of shotgun. I want the San Diego defense on its heels. We minimize Jamal Williams, who will be playing with one arm. Shawne Merriman is the closest thing to Lawrence Taylor that the NFL has seen since the original LT left the game. I want Merriman playing in space and not rushing the QB. I'd attack his side of the field all day. While Shaun Phillips is a dangerous pass rusher, I'd prefer him coming after #4 instead of Merriman.

The Packers attack with short passes. Last week, I asked for 8 receivers to be in the mix. We connected with 8 receivers. This week, we might need 9. We'll use the entire arsenal...especially, Ryan Grant. I remember Ryan Grant as a guy who found the first down marker, made the first guy miss and was good enough to get the job done. Get him the ball in space.

It's Favre, the Football Jesus, driving the Packers for an early score. The G-Force rises to its feet. In unison. My Father, Mac, is bumping "Soulja Boy" over the loud speaker. Followed by "Thank God I'm a Country Boy." From ATL Crunk to Country Music - Only in Wisconsin! Gotta love it.

Defensively, we keep 8 in the box. Tomlinson will get his yards. He'll make plays. I'm fine with him occasionally getting his 10-15 yard plays. But, he never gets loose. LT never gets deep into the secondary. Atari continues to play big against the run...especially as the opposition plays in the Red Zone.

Gates is limited by AJ and Nintendo Nick. Vincent Jackson is quieted by Rasta Al and Chuckie. The Chargers become frustrated.

The Packers continue to nickel and dime the SD defense. Finally, the "pump and go," it's Favre to Driver who finds himself in the open field. The BIG PLAY occurs for the good guys.

Admittedly, for weeks, my head said 30-13 San Diego. We were going to be over matched. Over powered. Out classed.

Candidly speaking, as long as we are competitive, I would not be crushed with a loss. I want our nuts to hang low. I want to compete. I want to fight. I want the Packers to believe that they can win. I want this to be one of the games we have a chance to eke out in the 4th Quarter. The G-Force in me says:

Green Bay 27. San Diego 23.

I'd like to thank a Bear friend for this one, "May the G-Force be with you!" We're headed to Minnesota in 1st place. Who is traveling with the Pack?

Vibe In. Vibe On.

Good Buzzes To You All,

Talkin' S-Mac.

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