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Packers vs. Giants: Quick Takes from Green Bay's 27-13 Loss

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Packers vs. Giants: Quick Takes from Green Bay's 27-13 Loss

The lifeless and Aaron Rodgers-less Green Bay Packers (5-5) fell back to .500 for the first time this late in the season since 2008, losing in convincing fashion to the once 0-6 New York Giants Sunday at MetLife Stadium, 27-13.

It was over when…

...Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul diagnosed Green Bay's often-used tight end clear out play and then amazingly intercepted Packers quarterback Scott Tolzien, taking the pick back 24 yards for a dagger touchdown that put New York up 27-13 in the fourth quarter.

Game Balls

  • Tramon Williams: Rip the effort and execution of the Packers defense, but don't question what the veteran cornerback brought to the table Sunday. Williams hauled in Green Bay's fourth interception of the season to halt a Giants march in the first half, and he was otherwise a tackling machine in the open field. The oft-criticized Williams played his best game in some time Sunday.
  • Jordy Nelson/Jarrett Boykin: Nelson is effective regardless of who is under center, and Boykin is slowly emerging into Green Bay's next star receiver. How Nelson caught a sideline bomb from Tolzien in the first half eludes explanation, and Boykin is becoming so good at using his size and strength to create separation. These two made plays for their young quarterback.
  • Brad Jones: Hard to give two game balls to the defense. But Jones filled up the box score, tallying 13 tackles, a sack and three tackles for losses. On his sack, he timed the snap and blew up Eli Manning for a nine-yard loss.

Key Stats

The Packers averaged two more yards a play (7.3-5.3) than the Giants but still lost by 14 points. Green Bay also had three more offensive drives than New York...Under Mike McCarthy, the Packers have never finished on the minus side of turnovers. This season is shaping up to the first, as Green Bay is currently minus-6...Aaron Rodgers threw four interceptions to start this season, Scott Tolzien has five in two games...Green Bay ran 20 times for just 55 yards. It was the Packers worst rushing total of this season. Eddie Lacy had just 27 yards on 14 carries...Victor Cruz, Hakeem Nicks and Rueben Randle combined to catch 15 passes for 197 yards and one touchdown. All three had a catch over 20 yards...The Packers started only two drives past their own 30-yard line. Four came inside their own 20...The Giants had as many drives of 10 or more plays (three) as three-and-outs...The Packers defense forced three punts in the fourth quarter, and only allowed 19 total yards...Scott Tolzien threw for 339 yards and averaged 10.0 yards per attempt. He was also intercepted three times...The Packers went 2-for-8 on third down and failed their only fourth down attempt, a fake punt inside New York territory. The Giants were 2-for-2 on fourth down...Giants led time of possession, 35:14 to 24:46...The Packers allowed zero sacks and had four defensively.

Other Notes

– In my game preview, I hypothesized that the Packers needed to be +1 or +2 in the turnover category and have a big advantage in rushing yards to beat the Giants. Green Bay accomplished neither. New York was +2 in turnovers and rushed for 23 more yards. Three picks and only 55 yards on the ground doomed any hope of the Packers springing the upset on the road.

– The calls for Dom Capers' head continue to grow in volume. But at what point does the majority of the blame get pinned on underperforming players? On New York's first touchdown, Micah Hyde got turned around and couldn't recover to the inside. Again, there were miscommunication problems in the secondary. And the Packers couldn't win man-to-man on several third-and-short situations. Players need to execute. Since Rodgers went down, very few on defense have. Capers deserves blame, but his players have continually let down the scheme—more so than the scheme has let down the players.

– Mike McCarthy was obviously very protective of Scott Tolzien, especially early. He routinely went to run plays on first and second down, despite the Giants clearly expecting such a plan. When Tolzien was able to attack on early downs and work off play-action, the Packers moved the football. Expecting the Packers to consistently win against stacked fronts on early downs and then move the sticks on tough third downs wasn't a winning plan on offense today. But it was also hard to fault McCarthy for doing so with a young quarterback making his first NFL start, on the road, against a really aggressive front four. The run game needed to be better.

– The initial viewing would have Marshall Newhouse playing his worst game in sometime. That's saying something, too. He was slow-footed and a non-factor in the run game. Don Barclay is clearly head-and-shoulders better than the Packers former starting left tackle, and Barclay has himself been a liability at times in 2013.

– Obviously, 5-5 is a bad look for Green Bay. But with Detroit also losing Sunday, 10-6 might actually take the NFC North this season. Here's some optimism for you: If the Packers can get Rodgers back soon, somehow get to the 10-win mark and qualify for the postseason, this will be a hot and considerably more healthy team heading into January. That's been a Super Bowl recipe in previous years. Who knows. Crazier things have happened.

– Up next: The Packers will head home for the defining game of their season, against the 2-8 Minnesota Vikings at Lambeau Field. Win next Sunday, and there's hope that Rodgers can return for Thanksgiving and salvage the season. Lose, and Green Bay can start thinking about next spring's draft. Pretty simple.

Zach Kruse is a 25-year-old sports writer who contributes to Cheesehead TV, Bleacher Report and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He also covered prep sports for the Dunn Co. News. You can reach him on Twitter @zachkruse2 or by email at zachkruse2@gmail.com.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (19) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Luanne Prochnow's picture

Seems like more injuries this season than any other. Have the Packers changed their training camps, is there less conditioning? What is going on?

Tarynfor12's picture

Too many grade C players trying to play in a grade B and higher scheme...

Many a fan are heartbroken with the latest loss and more so because you refuse to accept what is real and has been shown to you more than once.

" Denial will not dwell in my head and my Heart is thankful".....Tarynfor 12

Archie's picture

Face it, the GBP are a one player wonder - Aaron Rodgers. A player TT did not want if you will recall. yet most want us to nelieve that TT is a great GM guru. Nothing could be farther from the truth. And his minion, MM, called a whale of a ball game today. So conservative, so predictable. Anytime he did have success, he changed back to his safe and predictable play calling. It's as though he has an IQ of 60. I'm surprised AROD even wants to play for this organization. What a heavy load to carry. TT couldn't assemble a defense in SEA and he has been unable to build one here in GB. Of course, he has had only nine drafts to do so. Perhaps he needs another five. This organization needs a housecleaning from top to bottom.

jack in jersey city's picture

i don't think we need a housecleaning but like i said in another thread, thompson has failed to replace 3 KEY playmakers and leaders on defense- nick collins, charles woodson, and cullen jenkins. i know he's been trying to find replacements but it doesn't look like he's hit on them yet.

casey hayward had such a promising rookie season but he's been injured all year.

we have nobody at safety who even comes close to replacing nick collins. morgan burnett is a pretty average player who can look very good if you have a pro bowl calibur player playing alongside him.

i'm not too worried about the offense. rodgers should be back soon and once cobb is back our receiving corps looks pretty solid. nice to see boykin stepping up this season. he will be a solid #4 receiver for us. i can see ted picking up a TE in one of the first few rounds to replace finley.

bulaga should be back (hopefully) next season and bakhthiari looks like he could be pretty good (just don't watch the film from the giants game :)) i've heard good things about tretter and can't wait to see if he adds anything to the offensive line next year.

but, yes, overall, if rodgers goes down we are completely and totally f*cked! he is by far the MVP of this team and should be the MVP of the NFL every season because he truly is!

packeraaron's picture

Wait, TT didn't want Rodgers? Go home, Archie. You're drunk.

Stroh's picture

Where do you come up w/ this shit about Thompson not wanting Rodgers? Its complete bullshit!

Packers still had Favre, and Thompson drafted him. Thompson told Harlan before he picked that he was going to take Rodgers and piss off the fan base. Seems to me he must have wanted Rodgers pretty damn bad.

Your head needs a housecleaning from top to bottom!

TommyG's picture

That is a ridiculous statement, TT not wanting AR. He's the GM! If he didn't want him he wouldn't have drafted him. There were many fine players left on the draft board that day, so please stop with that type of thinking.

You are correct about MM's play calling. At one point he figured out that NYG secondary was not playing well against our deep WR. The problem is that he didn't keep throwing to them. I know he wanted to add balance to the play calling but in doing so he never forced the NYG defense to change what it was doing. If MM had, and if NYG had gone to a deep drop to stop those throws, our running game and slant routes would've openend up. I think MM was expecting that shift, but didn't stick to the deep throws enough to actually get the shift.

House cleaning is not the answer. Keeping our star on his feet, and adding some talent to the secondary is the answer.

RC Packer Fan's picture

The play that changed the game was the JPP pick 6. He made a hell of a play, I will give him that credit. My take on it after hearing his twitter comments is, maybe McCarthy's play calling is getting to predictable?

I hated early play calling. I understand they were trying to establish the run, but you can't get to 3rd and long on the opening drive.

Also when they were not having success running with lacy up the middle why not try to get him the ball in other ways. The screen pass was perfect. I would have liked to have seen him get the ball in the passing game more.

Nerd's picture

"The calls for Dom Capers’ head continue to grow in volume. But at what point does the majority of the blame get pinned on underperforming players?"

SOOO sick of this Vic Ketchman BS. Dude works for the team. You think he's gonna say anything bad about Dom Capers, when he needs to interact with him daily for his PR job?

When the DBs DO NOT KNOW WHO TO COVER, week in and week out, who's fault is that?

Bomdad's picture

Morgan Burnett?

Bearmeat's picture

Yep.

It's time. Capers needs to go in the offseason, even if we squeak in to the playoffs. Let's all face it, when we play a good offense in an important game, we'll get shredded.

It's Capers calling card.

jeremy's picture

Exactly what I was thinking. Joe Whitt has instituted a system of written tests for his guys and they still don't know were to line up. As far as I can remember they haven't since Collins and Woodson were there to put them in place.

WELL, guess what? Not every player is as smart as Charles. We need a simpler system guys can execute without falling over each other like a bunch of fucking clowns; game after game, season after season.

PackerPete's picture

or other guys who understand what guy to cover. can't be that hard...

jack in jersey city's picture

according to tom silverstein, the players in the defensive backfield are not capable of understanding dom's defense. check out X's and O's with leroy butler this week:

http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/sports/232550521.html

Derek in CO's picture

I didn't watch the game, thank god. But my take on capers and MM's play calling is this. They are predictable and everyone knows what to expect. The difference, ARod can still beat them, but without him................

Cow42's picture

I will say this, though... hard to get creative when you're constantly trying to get new guys "up to speed".

Yes - they lack playmaking talent (on both sides of the ball)... but some continuity in regards to personnel sure would go a long way towards opening up schemes a bit.

Morgan Mundane's picture

I did not see the game but expected a loss due to the play of our defense and Tolzien being new.
I did expext MM to create a conservative game plan fot Tolzien, run run and pass if we need to.
From reading the comments so did the Giants.
Doesn't matter really if the plan is to run, you have to carry it out. The box will be stacked next week against the Vikes also with the safeties playing up. Lets plan to run Mike.

Bomdad's picture

Good point. Running would have been a great plan had it worked, but it just wasn't executed. It did open up the deep passing game, which kept the pack in it until the 4th quarter. Then the INTs killed us.

Bomdad's picture

I'd like to get some better tackling out of Brad Jones. Had a good game, but could have laid a little more wood on the tackles.

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