Around the NFC North: Week 7

It was opposite day on Sunday in the NFC North. The Bears dominated a team that had just beaten the Packers and the Lions got the crap kicked out of them. It's all par for the course in the new more depressing NFL where the Packers are horrendous. 

Lions

The Ravens gave the Lions the business, winning 38-6.

Game Notes

  • The Ravens don't have an alpha edge rusher who can get pressures on 40% of his snaps and change the game by himself, but they do have a creative defensive coordinator who can keep the opposing QB guessing and worried about pressure all day. This week, they held Jared Goff to 5.4 yards per attempt, no TDs, and a QB rating of 68.4. The Lions' success on offense over the past year has come mostly because the offense line has been able to keep Goff clean. If you try to line up and play them straight, like Green Bay did, they'll carve you up. 

  • The Lions did do a little better running the ball, Jahmyr Gibbs had 68 yards on over 6 YPC, but basically all of those yards came after they were down several score. At one point the Ravens had 325 yards and the Lions had 13. 

  • The Lions defense was just as bad. Lamar Jackson was 21 of 27 for 357 yards, 3 TDs, and a near-perfect QB rating. Lamar had 73 more yards on 26 fewer attempts that Goff. 

  • And that's not all! The league's best run defense gave up 146 yards and 2 TDs to the Ravens. 

  • For how much it felt like the good ole days before the GD Broncos game, don't count the Lions out. They're still 2 games up in the North and almost every time has some sort of weird loss like this. At least it happened against a good team. 

 

Next Week

It's the Lions turn to take on the Raiders on Monday Night. 

Bears

The Bears embarrassed the Raiders 30-12. 

Game Notes

  • In a battle of backup QBs, the D2 son of an arm wrestling champion got the better of the 62-year-old journeyman. Tyson Bagent had an impressive game, going 21 for 29 for 162 yards and a TD. DJ Moore had 54 of those yards on 8 catches and the Bears added 173 yards on the ground. 
  • The Bears looked even better on defense, probably because Brian Hoyer was QB for the Raiders. Hoyer had just 4 yards per attempt, which was still more than Josh Jacobs averaged on the ground. The team forced 12 targets to Davante (still one less than Jacoby Meyers, LOL) after a week full of him complaining and he had just 57 yards. 
  • Jaylon Johnson (2 INTs and a TD) and Jaquan Brikser (10 tackles and 2 PDs) were the leaders for the Bears defensively. They'll be the backbone of the Bears' secondary for a long time if they don't randomly get traded so that the Bears can overpay a worse version of them in free agency.
  • The main takeaway from this Bears' game should be the same as the Lions': this was a freak occurrence that probably doesn't mean much for the rest of the season. 

Former Packers

  • TJ Edwards and Jack Sanborn had relatively quiet games, combining for just 3 tackles. 

  • Marcedes Lewis had one catch for 16 yards and Davante Adams had the aforementioned 57 yards. 

Next Week

The Bears play the Chargers on Sunday Night to make for a pair of horrific primetime games.  

Vikings

The Vikings pulled off a 22-17 victory against the 49ers. 

Game Notes

  • The Vikings won this game because of three main things: The 49ers were beaten up following a game against the Browns, Jordan Addison went crazy, and the pressure differential. Let's start with Addison. The rookie wide receiver took over where Justin Jefferson left off with 7 catches for 123 yards and 2 TDs. 
  • Addison's good game along with TJ Hockenson having a strong night (11 for 86) despite looking injured 4 or 5 times, allowed Kirk Cousins to throw for an insane 378 yards against the vaunted 49ers defense. Of course, we have to take that with a grain of salt because the 49ers just played one of the more physical teams in the league last week. 
  • The pressure differential was surprising. We've talked a lot about how Brian Flores has had to blitz like a madman to get pressure this season, against San Francisco he eventually decided to lay back and rush three on a lot of plays -- and they still got pressure. When you're going against a young QB who drilled blitz looks all week, it makes sense to switch it up sometimes. On the other side of the ball, the 49ers didn't get a sack. it was the most pass snaps played without a sack this season.  
  • While I recommended patience with both the Bears and Lions' results, I think the Vikings are legitimate. They have four one-score losses and just beat the best team in the NFC. 

Former Packers

  • Dean Lowry had 3 tackles and a fumble recovery. 

Next Week

The Vikings likely become the next team to depressingly beat the Packers.  

 

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__________________________

Mike Price is a lifelong Packers fan who recently moved form Utah to Stoughton (a Madison suberb). You can follow him on twitter at @themikeprice.

__________________________

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Comments (25)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
stockholder's picture

October 24, 2023 at 11:07 am

correct!

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HarryHodag's picture

October 24, 2023 at 11:15 am

Aside from the Eagles and possibly the 49'ers, the rest of the NFC is el-stinko. The AFC has a bunch of legit Super Bowl contenders and that reflects the Ravens drubbing the Lions.

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LeotisHarris's picture

October 24, 2023 at 01:37 pm

Thumbs up for use of "drubbing," HH.

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T7Steve's picture

October 24, 2023 at 11:16 am

Three shocking results in three different games. Four if you count the other shocking result in the NFCN this weekend.

Gotta love the NFL.

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lkcsmith's picture

October 24, 2023 at 11:31 am

Looking at the Vikings OL last night, I think their offence will have a feast against the GB D, both in passing and in running. Cousins will once again look like a HOFer.

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Fubared's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:18 pm

They were talking on Herd today about the Vikes could trade Cousins since his contract is coming up. Ya that wont happen. I see them offering him a three year deal. Who else are they going to get to replace him?
I would not be shocked to see the Vikes score on their first five possessions. I can gaurantee one injury early on for sure quote me "Gary goes down".
He avoids any games that may make him look bad as he is trying to get out of GB for Mo Money. He will take a dive just like he did in college.

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coolhand's picture

October 24, 2023 at 03:31 pm

Most likely, and then I see this today on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=886200246208725&set=a.2592566655697...

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TarynsEyes's picture

October 24, 2023 at 11:58 am

The Vikings last night has made it imperative to increase the magnification of the lens in which even 5 wins is a possibility, especially with the next games being, Rams, Steelers, Chargers, Chiefs, Lions, and might I add the Giants. Is there one combination of HC/QB that isn't multiple steps above MLF/Love?

Would it wrong to be thankful that we don't play the Bears again until week 18, so we can say it was a doesn't matter game.

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Fubared's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:15 pm

You said it all. After that game I told wife, I would not be surprised if the Vikes with the talent they have all over the place, can start to run the table and no one wants to play them in the playoffs thats for sure. Especially in Minny.
No this team could go to the SB from the NFC.
The Eagles are winning but not the same team from last year. Dallas can lay an egg just like the Lions. The Ravens looked all world against the Lions but they dont play like that every week and I see think Lamar is so so.

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PackerBO's picture

October 24, 2023 at 04:10 pm

Good points!!!!

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Fubared's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:09 pm

I've seen all the Vikes games thus far and knew this team was deep in talent on both sides of the ball. Their new defensive coach - hint a guy with a lot of experience coaching defense not a Barry who knows nothing., created a caos causing pass d and zone d with very fast and very sure tacklers at corner and safety. No one ran after the catch, they were swarmed under.
The offence was repaired by dumping a few linemen who couldnt pass block to save their souls and rebuilt the line with free agents and draft picks. Notice this year Cousins has time to throw and wow what a difference. The niner defense never really got to him the whole game and he had time to hit- you got not one Watson who is suppose to have speed? but Addison, a pick we could have had, Hokenson a TE who actually catches passes, and two more new additions via free agency that have good hands, speed and were available.

So were going up against a team with a great defense, great offence, great coaching - oh last night wife questioned why the HC of Vikes would call a time out and give niners more time at the five. I said its very smart.
If they score he wants time to throw the bomb with a minute left and try and score too. Ya that worked. So the HC is no dummy and this team has all the elements, no weaknesses. Compared to the Pack, they will be dominant again for a long time and will win the NFC north. The Lions are a sad joke. They have nothing really.

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TarynsEyes's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:21 pm

"The Lions are a sad joke. They have nothing, really."

Sheesh!

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Vachio's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:30 pm

I cringed when they hired Flores. I hated to see someone that competent go to a division rival. But at least have consistency with Barry, right? Right?

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coolhand's picture

October 24, 2023 at 03:29 pm

I wouldn't crown the Vikes as champs just yet. They just barely beat the Bears last week and did not look good doing it.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

October 25, 2023 at 04:52 am

Of course you've watched all the MN games - you are a Vikings fan!

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1966-Guy's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:12 pm

There are 2 QB’s that I like to reference to gauge our J.Love. Patrick Mahomes and Deshon Keizer. If you put a center line between these two QB’s, our J. Love is closer to Keizer than he is to this center line. The coaching staff must find a way to get him above this center line. I think our Love has the skills…but the coaching staff doesn’t. So it’s going to be a long season folks. GPG!

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TarynsEyes's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:29 pm

Waiting for this coaching staff to get a clue and get Love right.

https://youtu.be/Gp-CaTlxjLY?si=cmthW8uX_fO5CG19

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Vachio's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:32 pm

It'll be 84 more unless a coaching change is made. lol!

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Fubared's picture

October 24, 2023 at 09:24 pm

He lacks the brains. That is his problem. Hes been here three years learning under a hof qb and he playing like he doesnt know where to throw and where not to throw

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splitpea1's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:35 pm

As someone who lives in the Ravens viewing area, I don't think I've ever seen their offense look better. The offensive line was stellar and L. Jackson was right on the mark with his throws. The Ravens have a new OC with a new philosophy, so sometimes change can work wonders (are you listening Packer management?).

Oren Burks had 6 tackles for SF in their loss to the Vikings. He seems to be doing better out there than he ever did in Green Bay. Better coaching, I suspect.

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TarynsEyes's picture

October 24, 2023 at 12:53 pm

What does it say about our coaching when many players leave and play better?

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jlc1's picture

October 24, 2023 at 03:06 pm

The ones who don't get cut. It's a bit self reinforcing.

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jont's picture

October 24, 2023 at 04:38 pm

"Oren Burks had 6 tackles for SF in their loss to the Vikings. He seems to be doing better out there than he ever did in Green Bay. Better coaching, I suspect."

He's in a different scheme whichmeans different reseponsibilties for him, more in line with his skill set.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

October 25, 2023 at 04:57 am

Burks has played 179 snaps for SF this year and has a 79.0 PFF grade. He was very part time in 2022, playing just 15% of possible snaps (157 for that year) and had a PFF grade of 79.

Sounds like he is much better. After all, he was just part-time for GB as well.

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Fubared's picture

October 24, 2023 at 09:34 pm

The entire pack org needs to be rebuilt. You got a hc saying they think love will be fine and hinted he will be the s5arter next year.
That just fn isnt dealing with reality. Because this was gutts pick they will sacrifice the team before accepting love was a bad choice.lot of players on team will give up down the road as the losing becomes horrid.
Sadly the vikes rebuilt quickly with great draft picks and free agents and the new hc looks impressive. They wont be going anywhere for long time.

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