Our weekly "Chips Report" always includes two blue chippers (outstanding, exceptional play), two red chippers (good, though maybe not great) and two cow chips (dud performances). From the Week 15 37-36 win over the Dallas Cowboys...
- Running back Eddie Lacy––It's not as if he played exceedingly well in the first half, but Eddie Lacy was the only thing going for the Packers offense through two quarters. With one series left before halftime, Lacy had 10 touches while no other player on the entire team had more than one. Lacy was spurred at the half, however, reeling off 60 yards on the first play from scrimmage in the third quarter that helped to set up the team's first touchdown and begin the Packers' comeback from down 23 points. He later scored the winning touchdown with just over 90 seconds remaining in the game. On the day, Lacy ran for 141 yards on 21 carries, eclipsing 1,000 for the season. He also added four receptions for 30 yards.
- Cornerbacks Sam Shields/Tramon Williams––No, Shields and Williams didn't stop Dez Bryant and company cold. But after being part of a defense that yielded 332 yards in the first half alone, they were perhaps the biggest reason for the second half turnaround. Each cornerback came up with a key second-half interception of Tony Romo were absolutely necessary to the victory. For Williams, his game-clinching interception that was overturned by replay made up for a drop early in the fourth quarter that was initially ruled an interception and likewise overturned by replay. Shields' interception with just 2:58 remaining set up the Packers' winning touchdown. The two cornerbacks combined for five passes defensed.
- Tight end Andrew Quarless––Combined with his performance last week in a victory over the Falcons, Quarless is making for quite the comeback story from his reconstructive knee surgery in late 2011. Among his six receptions for 66 yards was his third quarter touchdown that pulled the Packers to within 29-17. Then on the Packers' game-winning drive in the fourth quarter, Quarless hauled in an 18-yard reception and also drew a pass interference penalty on Cowboys safety Barry Church that gave the Packers a first down at the 13-yard line.
- Quarterback Matt Flynn––Few could have blamed Mike McCarthy if he had benched Flynn at halftime after a coming away with a stat line that read 10 of 17 for 117 yards with no touchdowns and an interception for a passer rating of 55.3. Poor immobility and decision making also led to two sacks. All Flynn did in the second half was lead the Packers on five second half scoring drives with four of the touchdowns coming through the air. Flynn's final stats improved to 26 of 39 for 299 yards and a 113.1 passer rating.
- Linebacker Brad Jones––Perhaps affected by a knee injury suffered in last week's win over the Falcons, Jones didn't appear up to snuff in a poor showing against the Cowboys. Several times he was slow to react and missed tackles that led to 134 rushing yards and 7.4 yards per carry by Dallas running back DeMarco Murray. He also got burned by Jason Witten's long reception of 27 yards up the seam and got flagged for a facemask penalty in the second half. Jones was occasionally removed from the game and replaced by Jamari Lattimore on an on-and-off basis.
- Safety M.D. Jennings––The Packers rotated M.D. Jennings and Sean Richardson at safety, and in certain situations, put Jennings in the game on obvious passing downs. He looked like a boy amongst men on Dez Bryant's fourth quarter touchdown, first getting pushed away by Bryant on a jam attempt and then failing to get his head around for the football after recovering in the back of the end zone. Richardson isn't making plays, but he's not making mistakes either. Jennings is just flat getting beat nearly every time he's on the field.
Brian Carriveau is the author of the book "It's Just a Game: Big League Drama in Small Town America," and editor of Cheesehead TV's "Pro Football Draft Preview." To contact Brian, email [email protected].
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