I hope you enjoyed your bye week as much as I did. The timing was impeccable. The Monday Night buzz kill is behind me and I'm ready to watch our football program excel over the next 8 weeks. Yes, it's an 8 week mission that includes matches against some of the poorest talent in the NFL. 2 games against the Lions. 1 against the Browns. 1 against Tampa. If we play with aggressiveness, they should all be double-digit wins. In addition, over the next 8 games, we have 4 winnable HOME games versus Minnesota, Dallas, SF and Baltimore. Anything less than 7-1 is a disappointment. If you can't win the games you are supposed to win and you can't dominate your home field, you are no more than a pretender.
Before I get to the game, I feel it necessary to point out the obvious: The entire offseason I was saying it was imperative to bring in a guy like Vonnie Holliday. He knew the 3-4. He was a proven vet that brought leadership to the locker room. He'd played with Capers previously. Thus far, in 5 games, Holliday has 2 sacks and a forced fumble that kept the Broncos in the game against the Patriots. In 5 seasons, Michael Montgomery has brought ZERO leadership. He also has 1 forced fumble. The most sacks he's ever produced in a season is 2.5. Yet, we continue to accept such deficiencies. We allow the same people to make the same mistakes. Holliday's 2 sacks would also be tied for the team lead.
I'm happy Mark Tauscher is back. I hope he is fit enough to make an impact.
I can't believe I'm about to say it but I'm excited for B-Jack to play again. Wynn has been a failure.
Barnett has no inside pass rushing ability. I hope Bishop plays more this week.
We need Bigby healthy.
Rodgers continues to hold the ball too long. If I can see it for the first 20 games of his career, why can't our coaching staff? It's comical to me that the media is finally making it a topic.
It all starts this week. Detroit comes to town. The last time the Lions won at Lambeau was December of 1991. I was with my brother Chad. We were frozen. Barry Sanders hurdled a Packers LB. Mike Tomczak was the Packers QB. Vince Workman was our RB. Almost seems ancient to me. The streak continues this Sunday.
The Packers will use a balanced attack. Expect a heavy dose of Ryan Grant in the 1st quarter. The Lions have been surprisingly good for the 1st half of games. They pursue the line of scrimmage with Larry Foote and Julian Peterson. But, when you start players such as Deandre Levy, William James, Marquand Manuel and Jason Hunter, you are prone to giving up big plays down the field. Eventually, you're worn down.
Early in the game, it's Grant on the cutback. It's Grant on the pitch to the right. It's Grant powering left and cutting right.
With the exception of the 4th Quarter against the Rams, our OL has been pushed around. This week, we get off to a good start. Our running game opens up the pass. It's play action pass and deep down the field to Jennings.
The Lions defense has been destroyed against the likes of Brees, Cutler and Roethlisberger. Rodgers will have similar success. Utilizing short routes. Quicker designs. Rodgers finds Lee, J-Mike, Grant, B-Jack, Jones, Nelson, Driver and Jennings.
I'm sad to see Willie B. go, but I believe Jordy makes a play on special teams as well this week.
Defensively, with Calvin Johnson's status in question, the mission is to stop Kevin Smith. 8 in the box. A variety of blitzes. We attack.
Clay Matthews 3 gets his first clean hit on a QB. Jeff Backus is not what he once was. He can be pushed back and run around. Matthews makes a consistent difference.
Woodson gets his first sack of the year. He also gets his 4th pick.
Nintendo Nick records his 2nd interception.
If this one is not convincing, I'm concerned.
Packers 38. Lions 20.
Seasons change. So does the football mentality. Bring on the cold weather.
Oh, and also, the Vikings and the Bears both lose this week. We're back in it!
Go Pack Go!