Saturday, September 22, 2012

My Take -> Week 3

Greetings, G-Force.

What a thrill! Once again, Ray Nutler came to Lambeau. Once again, Ray Nutler left in despair. And, once again, with Ray Nutler as the starting QB, the BEARS STILL SUCKED! It doesn't get any better than a Lambeau celebration on Prime Time, under the lights, and against the hated rival to the South.

Excitingly, there were a lot of positives to take away from the victory over Chicago. Here are some kind vibes from the game:

* The league's MVP has not found his rhythm yet, but the defense picked up the slack. And, because of it, after 2 weeks, the Packers are tied for 1st place in the NFC North.
* The Claymaker looks to be playing at his 2010 level. Vicious in pursuit. Attacking the line of scrimmage. Fearless. I love how he's moving around and he's coming from all different positions on the field.
* Sir Charles making plays in the secondary! And, then point his finger in Nutler's face with intensity. The intimidation factor was priceless.
* T-Mon went nose-to-nose and toes-to-toes with Brandon Marshall. T-Mon picked off two passes for 38 yards. Marshall caught two passes for 24 yards.
* The Bears were excited about their 2nd round pick, Alshon Jeffery. Between Sammy Swagga and Casey Hayward, Jeffery was held to 1 catch for 7 yards.
* Jerron McMillan looks to have play making ability. Liked how he found his way around the football. Now, he needs to catch it!
* For those Dom Capers haters, what did you think of the Bears victory? Loved how he played with only one DL. Bringing in 4 LB's and 6 DB's. Using Sir Charles as a Rover. Rotating Raji, Worthy, and Daniels as the lone rusher. Keeping the legs of the DL fresh. I also loved how he incorporated Erik Walden into the game plan and rotated the LB's.
* 7 sacks! 4 interceptions! 1 game! I love Ray Nutler.
* Worthy grabs his first sack! Daniels does the same!
* DJ Smith runs over Forte!
* Remember when the Bears and Packers used to play and the Bears would dominate the special teams battle. Yeah, those days are not around anymore. Now, it's the contrary.
* Tim Masthay totally neutralized Devin Hester.
* Mike McCarthy goes gutsy on 4th & 26! And it brought the dagger! What a call. What courage. What confidence. What bravery. And Tom Crabtree delivers! Also, what a block by the WVU grad, Don Barclay! Loved it.
* Our rookies are making an impact and bringing attitude. As I mentioned, Worthy and Daniels each had a sack. McMillan had a pick. Moses was active and in the face of the opponent. Hayward was jamming people at the line of scrimmage. Hayward spent a lot of time on Earl Bennett. Both are Vanderbilt products. Hayward got the best of Bennett, who finished with 2 catches for 21 yards. While Perry didn't get home for a sack, he certainly applied pressure and generated a push.
* Rodgers has yet to find his rhythm. At times, he looks frustrated. Almost annoyed. Stay patient, MVP. Good things are coming.
* I absolutely love what McCarthy is doing with Randall Cobb. Have to utilize his versatility. Big plays will continue to come for him.
* Double D dancing with the stars in the end zone! 1 catch. 26 yards. 1 TD. 1 Dance in the end zone. 1 Lambeau Leap. Sublime stuff!
* 7 sacks! 4 interceptions! 1 game! I love Ray Nutler.
* Loved the way Benson hit the hole. Also enjoyed how McCarthy stuck with the run game to soften the pressure from the Bears front 4.
* Jordy Nelson & J-Mike have not had the start to the season that I thought they might. Not worried about it. Just mentioning.
* KUHHHHHHHHHNNNNNNNNNNNNN!!!!!!!!! Always fun when he catches a screen and puts his head down.
* Tom Crabtree had more receiving yards than Brandon Marshall.
* 7 sacks! 4 interceptions! 1 game! I love Ray Nutler.
* After the TD pass to Driver, I enjoyed how Rodgers pointed to the sideline. Clearly, they had seen something that they could expose. And, they did with exceptional precision.

This week - it's the Seahawks. In Seattle. A tough place to play. The home of the 12th man. On Monday Night Football. Under the lights. It'll be hostile. It'll also be time for the Packers to polish the helmets and let their starts shine. Let's sparkle, baby. Let's sparkle.

The Seahawks are going to attempt to mimic the game plan of the Chiefs last year. They'll pound it on the ground and hope to look at 3rd & 4 or less. They want to put Russell Wilson in position to succeed. Expect Marshawn Lynch to get at least 20 carries and possibly more than 25. If Lynch touches it less than 20 times, the Packers will win in a blow-out. But, the Seahawks will be methodical. They'll be patient. They'll hope for success on 3rd down.

Russell Wilson has been a nice story. He had a great pre-season. He led them to a big win over the Cowboys. His mobility has allowed him to extend plays. He's been able to step up in the pocket and make plays with his feet. In two games, he has nearly 50 yards rushing. He's done just enough with his feet to keep you honest, but he is capable of moving chains with his legs.

The Packers should match up well with the Seahawks WR's. Braylon Edwards and Sidney Rice have the size to be difference makers. Golden Tate had a lot of promise coming out of ND. None of the 3 are overly worrisome. In all seriousness, when used in the slot, Doug Baldwin would be the Packers toughest match-up. I like the way T-Mon would line up against Rice. Sammy Swagga can line-up and run with Tate. It'd be up to Hayward to get his hands on Baldwin and to jam him off his route or Baldwin can be a 3rd down weapon.

The key to the game will be the battle at the line of scrimmage. The Packers are coming off of a dominant performance and now, they'll be facing Breno Giacomini at RT. Yes, the same Breno Giacomini that was an absolutely sieve at Tackle for the Packers in the preseason over the last couple of years. Nick Perry, lets see that bull rush! Erik Walden, I'd love to see you swimming underneath Breno. Lick your chops, Clay Matthews. Get ready for another big time performance in front of a National Audience. On the other side of the line, the Seahawks will be getting Russell Okung back from a knee injury. While Okung is a solid player. I can't imagine he'll be at 100%.

Look for the Seahawks ball control offense to be predicated on runs between the tackles and behind Max Unger and John Moffitt, two young, athletic OL. It'll be up to Raji and Pickett to plug the holes and keep Seattle in 3rd and long situations.

The Seahawks defense is vastly underrated. They're aggressive. They're confident. Each play, they seek to punish the ball carrier. They have one of the best secondaries in the NFL with Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor, Earl Thomas and Brandon Browner. If you've followed the blog long enough, you'll know that I loved Sherman coming out of college last year. The converted WR loves to use his hands at the line of scrimmage. He'll turn and run with you. He'll get his hands on a lot of balls. But, he's also susceptible to biting on the stop-and-go. Chancellor and Thomas are as legitimate of a Safety tandem as their is in the NFL. Both are ballhawks. Browner is a legitimate Pro Bowl caliber CB.

Look for Benson to get his touches early in the game to slow down the pursuit of the Seattle defense. Benson will also look to quiet the crowd. The cut-back should be open as both Brandon Mebane and Alan Branch will occasionally over pursue. If Benson can get to 75 yards, the Packers will be happy with the offensive output. If the Packers try to spread Seattle out and play from the shot-gun all game, CenturyLink Field is a tough place to play.

After looking to establish the rune early in the game, the Packers should look for some easy completions for Rodgers. Let's get him in a rhythm. Let him taste success. Put him in position for success. Then, go play action. Get Nelson on Sherman. Let's see Nelson go up and make a play. The big play is coming soon. We've yet to taste it in 2012. We'll see it this week.

The Seahawks keep it close. But a big defensive turnover late as Woodson picks off Wilson changes the landscape. The Packers move to 2-1.

Green Bay 27. Seattle 16.

Go Pack Go.

Talkin' S-Mac.!/buzzboy3

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