World, Hold On. The Revolution starts tomorrow. The loss to the Bengals was alarming. And if the Packers could not hear that wake up call, the season will end before it begins. A loss to the Rams would signal the end to the 2009 season. No need to panic. It's time for efficiency.
My cousins Danny, Emmitt, and Ryan will be in attendance. Ensuring victory. I'm certain of it.
I've watched the replay of the Bengals game twice. Trying to make sense of it. A few things are painfully obvious. We've lost connection with the basics of football. When you couple a poor offensive line with plays that are designed to take a while to develop and a QB that fails to utilize his check downs, failure is a certainty. Twice I was certain we were to come away with points only to be held back because Rodgers took sacks when we were in FG range. You have to understand field position and down & distance. Rodgers has reverted back to last season - waiting for the big play to happen downfield rather than take what has been given to him underneath. When he gets rid of the ball quickly, good things happen and we move the football.
Mike McCarthy says that he "has a duty to get the ball to his players downfield." Mike, you are wrong. Your playmakers are greedy bastards with the ball in their hands. They live for grabbing yards after the catch. Get 'em the ball. They'll make guys miss. Where's the slant? The bubble screen? The short crossing routes? No need for the puma routes...we want our guys running AT the secondary. Not towards the line of scrimmage.
When you are struggling to get the run game going, you can utilize the pass to set up the run and to slow down the pass rush. But, you must nickel and dime the defense. 3-7 yard routes. Quick to develop. Thus far, we seem to be applying pressure on ourselves and trying to force BIG things to happen rather than letting them develop. McCarthy & Rodgers seem to be panicking.
We'll get it fixed this week. In a big way.
But, before I get to the game, I'm quite disturbed by the release of Rouse and I find it fitting that it occurs the same week we play Anthony Smith. I'm fine with making an example of a guy. McCarthy says it's about availability and accountability. Well then why do we keep Montgomery & Bush? Each week, Montgomery is pushed 10-12 yards back. Literally. We keep Bush as he is a strong special teams player? Who are we kidding? Bush is a failure. He's miserable. And an absolute liability at Safety.
We traded for Derrick Martin. I have no idea about his skills. We'll find out this week as he's in the starting line-up.
The Rams are on tap this week. Arguably the worst team in the NFL. They must be our remedy. Short passes. Yards after the catch. The ball in Jennings hands streaking towards the secondary. The dump off to Lee. Short slants to Nelson. Crossing routes to Driver, Jones. J-Mike down the seam. It's basic football. Return to the roots. It'll open up the run game. Where did the shovel pass go? Each week, others find great success with it. We used to run it better than anyone. Go back to it. What about the delayed screen? Get after it!
Grant & Jennings were extremely unproductive last week, but at some point, it's the Coach's job to make certain that they get the ball in position to succeed - to get them in the flow of the game. In basketball, when your shooter goes cold, the coach tries to find a way to get him a lay-up. Find his rhythm. In football, when the WR is struggling to get open, you throw him a screen. Let him feel the pigskin.
Defensively, I'm over Nick Barnett, Brady Poppinga, and AJ Hawk. I'd prefer to see us go with Bishop, Matthews and Chillar. I can't stand missed tackles. And Barnett, Poppinga and Hawk look like they are practicing ballet as they are dancing with offensive lineman, TE's and fullbacks. They ran right at Poppinga. Brady was a poser. A week earlier, Matthews was a star against the run. Insert him in the line-up full time. Immediately.
Additionally, what are we saving Raji for? Get him in the line-up. No more Montgomery!
The Rams OL is beat up. First round pick Jason Smith remains out due to injury. This should make it difficult for the Rams to open up holes for Steven Jackson. I'll state the obvious: offensively, the Rams are going to try to pound away at us with Jackson and take chances deep with Donnie Avery. They'll also attack our LB's with Randy McMichael on short passes.
Defensively, they will attack with a variety of blitzes. Head coach Steve Spagnuolo is one of the brightest defensive minds in the leage. Expect Will Weatherspoon and James Laurinaitis pursuing, forcing our Tackles to make spontaneous blocking assignment decisions. Chris Long will make life difficult for Daryn Colledge. Long has an endless motor. Also, keep an eye on nickel back, #32, Bradley Fletcher. He's a rookie from Iowa. He's a hard nosed tackler who will develop into a decent starting CB. Today, he'll struggle to cover the likes of Jennings and Driver. I'd attack him.
I am amazed with Oshiomogho Atogwe's game. I have wanted him to become a Packer over the past two years when he was a RFA. I would offer a 1st Round pick for him and feel that he's a top 4 safety in the NFL along with Palomalu, Reed, and Nintendo Nick. It would not surprise me if he forces a turnover.
Ultimately, we have too much firepower for the Rams and for the first time in the regular season, the juggernaut is clear and present! Grant finds the end zone. So does Jennings.
Matthews records his 2nd sack of the year. Chuckie grabs his 3rd pick. Jenkins dominates the line of scrimmage. The defense rebounds in a physical way.
Green Bay 30. St. Louis 16. Finally, we get to 30 points!
Walk to the front. Open the gate. Feel like 12-time World Champions. Prosper.