Confessions of a Polluted Mindset: A Packers Brain Drain

Random thoughts swimming around in the Packers' section of my brain.

Referees: Look, I'm usually the guy telling people not to blame the refs, the calls (good and bad) usually even out, yada yada. Well, throw that sh*t out the window - the Packers were robbed with phantom calls at critical moments. The holding on Lane Taylor that cost the Packers four points? Someone show me where he held. As for the Matthews roughing penalty that wiped out a game-ending (I said GAME-ENDING) interception, if that is really a penalty in this NFL (as the league is insisting), then we might as well just go to 7 on 7 football - nothing but quarterbacks, receivers and cornerbacks.

This is "Picking Up the QB and driving him into the ground"

OK Mike McCarthy: As bad as I think MM's clock management has been over the years, I mostly agree with the tactic of using timeouts before the half when on defense. The strategy is sound IF you have a defense you think is capable of getting a stop. And that is where it has failed in the past - awful defense combined with taking timeouts led to opportunities for the other team. This Packers' defense, while still young and in transition, has some talent capable of making a big stop from time to time. The strategy worked as intended on Sunday.

Confused Mike McCarthy: Conversely, could there be a better example of confused time management after the Ha Ha interception? Already in field goal position, they run the ball on first down with 2:05 left. With the 2-minute warning coming up, you're not going to run time off the clock, so why not throw the ball on that play? Instead, they pass twice after that, resulting in minimal time run off AND no timeouts used. You can argue that it wouldn't have mattered or that if Davante Adams holds onto the pass, we're not having this discussion, but still,  McCarthy did the opposite of what would have made sense. 

Defense: I was inundated with "Defense sucks" "Same old defense" "Nothing's changed" comments on the CHTV live blog. This is just ridiculous and misguided. It's a defense in transition, a makeover in progress - it's not going to be great after two games, but the differences are striking. They are actually capable of getting stops now. They did it last week. They did it this week -they ENDED THE GAME - until it was taken away from them. The dog-tired defense gave up a bunch of yards in overtime, sure. They were so gassed you even saw things like Kyler Fackrell get some snaps with the game on the line (desperate times!). House on Diggs was a huge mistake, but If you can't see the difference in attitude and the beginnings of improved talent level, then you just don't know what you are watching.. Here's some perspective for the, "but Cousins threw all over them" folks:

Things I would have liked to have seen:

~ Ty Montgomery with more than five carries and 1 reception. Got 40 yds in those six touches.

~ More Reggie Gilbert.

~ Kentrell Brice not pull up in mid-air when he had a very good chance to intercept or knock down the Thielen TD.

~ Any kind of coverage other than single coverage on Stefan Diggs with Davon House.

~ Kevin king not get injured.

~ Marcedes Lewis getting more than a handful of snaps - why did we bring him in again?

~ No phantom holding calls. Evidently, pushing a guy to the ground is now holding. 

But this is not a hold on against Lowry. ok.

__________________________

"Jersey Al" Bracco is the Editor-In-Chief, part owner and wearer of many hats for CheeseheadTV.com and PackersTalk.com. He is also a recovering Mason Crosby truther.  

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Comments (129)

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Coldworld's picture

September 19, 2018 at 05:34 am

Absolutely on the same page with you Al. The NFL is heading in the wrong direction.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:16 am

I'd like to see a site exactly like PFF but grades the refs. I'm sick of horrible officiating ruining the game.

In fact I'd pay for a subscription just to help it solvent.

In fact I would donate my engineering skills to get it running on the web.

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Skip greenBayless's picture

September 19, 2018 at 11:07 am

They are headed in the wrong direction and they either don't care or can't see their new rules, regulations, and social justice issues etc are contributing to the demise of football as we used to know it. I think eventually we actually are headed to a touch football type of game. The fact they agree on Matthews' hit after replay tells me that. I believe Goodell does have a long term strategy aimed at preventing CTE and other injuries etc. They want less hitting even if it pisses off it's fan base. I think they think that the fans will always be there no matter what. This is the new norm. Get used to it is their latest message with not reversing the Matthews hit. Total arrogance!!

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PackfanNY's picture

September 19, 2018 at 11:24 am

I would add or at least ask other posters if everyone believes that allowing games to end in a "Tie" is a good thing. What is the rationale for not playing the game to conclusion?
Personally, I hate it. Even hockey has figured out a way to get out of the dreaded tie. I am somewhat surprised that I have not seen a lot of commentary on the topic this week.

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Skip greenBayless's picture

September 19, 2018 at 11:30 am

Two ties. Both were divisional rivalries GB/MN and Pit/Cle. Gambling now legal. It pisses fans off and creates more drama as neither got a win. Wait until next time each fan base says and we'll beat your ass!! That's called building even more interest and the NFL, tv, cable, pay per view etc and Vegas makes even more money. Hey, just throwing it out there who knows. I don't like it either for the record.

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Oppy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 12:31 pm

PackFan,

The rationale for limiting games to one extra quarter of OT despite the outcome is that football is a physically taxing game of attrition and the safety of the players is taken into consideration.

There is a limit to how long these men can play a game of football before exhaustion leads to a rash of injuries.

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PackfanNY's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:48 pm

Oppy, I hear you but I for one don't buy it. Injuries have never been proven to happen more because of the length of the game. We have seen guys injured on the opening kick-off or on the first play of a game. We won't even discuss PRE-SEASON games that mean nothing yet NFL plays four of them!?? Jake Ryan anyone?
Maybe try the college rule? Set up at the 25 or 30 and do it that way. Just seems ties are unnecessary and risk of injury is too easy an excuse when injury is always a risk.

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Oppy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 02:44 pm

While injury can certainly strike at any time, there are numerous studies on fatigue related injuries. These are real and documented.

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Kb999's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:02 am

Why arnt there any consequences for officials especially after the outcome of the game was changed? Fire him!!

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Razer's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:19 am

I thought that most NFL officials were not full-timers. In an effort to save money, the league has a stock of weekend refs enforcing a confused mashup of ill-defined rules.

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Oppy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 12:34 pm

How do you make officiating a game that plays all but a handful of games one day a week a full time job though?

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Minniman's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:10 pm

A good point, but if the players are professional then the officiating needs to match it.

Does the game need so many on-field referees if there's the current suite of camera angles, a "bunker" in NY and the option to allow more coaches challenges?

Expanding the coaches challenge powers alone would cut out half the refs.

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Coldworld's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:07 pm

Look at it another way, what value do you place on your multi-billion dollar product?

That way professional refs seem cheap. Pay them
on a game check basis perhaps. Incentive to make the active roster.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:47 pm

Googling NFL referee pay shows articles that report a $201,000 per year minimum salary beginning in 2019. Back in 2011, first-year Officials earned a minimum of $75,000. There is a difference between "officials" and referees, who are the top guys supervising their 7 person crew. Most referees earn at least $175,000 per year.

While now there are some full-time referees, the NFL wants officials to be part-time so it doesn't have to pay for health insurance and the like. The NFL has specified that officials cannot earn more than 50% of their overall income from the NFL. Ed Hochul (who is a referee now), for instance, is and has been a partner in a Phoenix law firm.

For most purposes, the referees are professional referees who are well paid. Most officials are paid over $10,000 per game and earn $100K or more per year depending on experience. The guys whose names you recognize (referees) probably make $300K to $500K per year.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:24 pm

You spend the remainder of the time preparing to actually do your job correctly.

See the problem?

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Mojo's picture

September 19, 2018 at 03:52 pm

In answer to Kb's query - not only will there not be any negative consequence for the ref on the CM3 roughing call but it is being held up by the league as the absolute right call to make. He might end-up getting a raise.

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Coldworld's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:10 pm

Well the consequence is that the league has now embarked on a nonsensical path merely due to its overweening arrogance. A bad decision picked up by the public has inspired a reaction one might expect in a kindergartner. Doesn’t say much for the culture under Goodall.

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The TKstinator's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:07 am

On the Taylor “hold” (barf): looks like Vikes are running a tackle-end twist where the def tackle is deliberately diving at Bakh to free up the end to loop inside. But I’m sure MINN was happy to get a hold called on that play.
Argh.

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Nick Perry's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:21 am

I've said more than once on here that the Minnesota D-Linemen SOLD that hold. Taylor whipped his ass on the play so he did the next best thing...He sold the hold.

After last weekend I'm ready for 5 hour games and reviewing EVERY penalty if it would mean getting the right call on the field made.

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Razer's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:24 am

...After last weekend I'm ready for 5 hour games and reviewing EVERY penalty...

I can't say that I have your commitment. While I love my Packers, I can't sit and watch this kind of football. Aside from what my team is doing (or not doing), this product is getting harder to watch. If the NFL continues down this road, I will be an next day standings fan.

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dobber's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:59 am

So...an MLB-type fan?

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Bearmeat's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:02 am

I just watched the game last night. I am PISSED AS HELL about that tie. We got completely jobbed. Worst screw job against us since the Fail Mary in 2012. GB was the better team on Sunday and it wasn't close.

I only hope this doesn't come back to bite us. Remember, we would have had a bye and been the 2 seed in 2012 with the W that was taken from us. Instead, we ended up @ SF in the playoffs. We know what happened that game...

I hope we go into Minny healthy in Nov. IF we do, we're going to whip their asses.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:17 am

Kind of sums it up for me.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:34 am

I would probably not watch it live. I'd record it so I can fast forward through the commercials and now some of the replays if watching the actual play doesn't help me decide whether it was a penalty.

As for MLB, years ago I started fast forwarding between pitches (since I didn't have any interest in watching the batter adjust his batting glove and his groin area after each and every pitch). Of course, what happened is I soon just stopped watching MLB altogether.

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Minniman's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:20 pm

That's my fear TGR, if one can't make it to a game and take in the experience then watching a telecast "live" is becoming an unbearable event. Now I find myself muting the ads and hitting social media or working while waiting for the game to re-start......... sad.

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Gort's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:33 pm

Things I would rather do than watch baseball:
* Watch the grass grow.
* Watch paint dry.
* Watch railroad tracks rust.
* Watch soccer (no, probably not soccer).

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:59 pm

Just review every play and we can all watch on DVR. 2 hours of commercial s have made the live watch unbearable anyways.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 11:54 pm

Kind of like watching Walking Dead. AMC commercials are worse than network TV ever was.

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croatpackfan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:57 am

That was my first impression on that play. Those dirty "tricks" are something I do not like to see, because they very often leads to injuries. Lane was almost pushed to Davids low leg section...

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Minniman's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:28 pm

...... and closing the loop from a number of other posts above, professional full time refereeing would concentrate on identifying emerging exploitation tactics like this so that they could be called appropriately at game-time.

All that has happened now is that Minnesota coaches (and all coaches) see this as a viable coaching pattern that could yield a positive outcome.

....... "just win baby - ethics are for academics"...... sad

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The TKstinator's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:08 am

You DID want to see House on Diggs, Al?

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4thand1's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:55 am

confused too. typo

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:29 am

He did say polluted mindset.

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JerseyAl's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:18 pm

whoops! fixed it.

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The TKstinator's picture

September 19, 2018 at 02:07 pm

Cool.

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The TKstinator's picture

September 19, 2018 at 05:46 pm

Not cool?

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dobber's picture

September 19, 2018 at 05:50 pm

The aforementioned cool.

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PAPackerbacker's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:10 am

With all the rule changes in the NFL it is time for another one. Replay of a penalty call that causes change of possession or nullifies a touchdown and upon review the ability to reverse the call. Game changing plays are to be made by the football players, not a non playing official. There's no way one ref should be able to change the outcome of a game with a lame call that can not be reviewed and/or reversed. Reviews are done on other change of possession or questionable calls. And the coaches should be able to challenge a call of this magnitude, regardless if he uses his 2 red challenger flags. The hit by Matthews was text book clean and the holding call was a powerful block or push that knocked the defender to the ground. No phantom holding there. A questionable penalty should be reviewable and reversible and the coaches should have the ability to challenge a call if it changes possession, nullifies a touchdown, or nullifies a first down. Get it right NFL. Admit that a ref can make a bad call and then have the ability to change it and make it right.

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Nick Perry's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:33 am

"With all the rule changes in the NFL it is time for another one. Replay of a penalty call that causes change of possession or nullifies a touchdown and upon review the ability to reverse the call."

This is an excellent point and honestly THIS is what pissed me off to the point where I wanted to throw my new 50" out the window to the street 3 stories below. They review every damn thing it seems already, why didn't Carrente review THAT call on Matthews SINCE there was a change of possession on the play. The fact they threw the flag in the first place was bad enough. To not review it and then send it in for a teaching video??? Keep it up NFL...I honestly have one foot out the door because your product has become borderline worthless.

Dammit now I'm all pissed off again!

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marpag1's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:29 am

You guys are missing the real problem. The NFL actually DID carefully review the game film in all its super slo-mo glory, albeit after the game was over. But even after that careful study, they STILL said that the Matthews play was a penalty. This isn't about the refs not being able to see the filed. This is about a dumbass NFL rule that turns football into patty-cake for kindergarten girls. All of the instant replay cameras in the world aren't going to do a damn thing to change a stupid rule.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:54 am

This is just my opinion. But I think had they reviewed that live they would have said no penalty.

But I think they are not wanting more backlash so they are finding anything they can to say the ref was right, even though they know it was wrong. And if that is true, they are just opening up a HUGE can of worms for themselves.

The sad part was what the NFL came back and said is not even what the REF called it on the field. Thats why to me they are grasping at straws trying to find anything they can.

They know the REF cost the Packers the win. They don't want to go down that road again!

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:20 am

"Thats why to me they are grasping at straws trying to find anything they can."

Yep, they are desperate to appear competent but they are not capable. So they just make up a lie and stuff down our throats.

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PAPackerbacker's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:04 pm

I agree. No way is the NFL going to admit the ref made a bad call that cost the Packers a win. And I agree if there was a review of the play that could have reversed it, the penalty would have been reversed. Same for the phantom holding call against Taylor too.

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Oppy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 03:07 pm

after seeing the video from behind the play, I understand why the NFL is saying they're using it as an example of what not to do (although I don't agree with them.)

Their point they are trying to make is that Clay Matthews wrapped his left arm around the back of Cousins' leg and quickly pulled it upwards to take his leg out from under him and force him to the ground. That must be the "Scoop" technique they keep on harping about.

Again, I don't agree that should be a problem, but if that's their angle, I understand what they're going after. In my opinion, the point of tackling is to take the ball carrier to the ground, and taking the leg up is a great way to accomplish that. I don't personally believe it's excessive punishment of the ball carrier / QB. I also don't believe the QB should be exempt from any hits that would be legal to any other ball carrier on the field.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 20, 2018 at 06:58 am

The problem with that "scoop" is that Cousins leg was already lifted because he was throwing the ball.

The sad part was the official that made the call didn't call it a scoop penalty. He said he drove Cousins into the ground. Which was wrong. But then the NFL came back and said it was something else.
By the NFL doing that it has opened up a huge can of worms.

There was absolutely nothing wrong with Clay's tackle. Like every former player and officials have said its not a penalty.

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The TKstinator's picture

September 19, 2018 at 02:06 pm

I honestly wonder how close the NFL is to becoming flag football.

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Gort's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:42 pm

W W V S - What Would Vince Say

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Since'61's picture

September 20, 2018 at 07:06 am

Vince would say; "What the hell is going on out there?" Very loudly.
Thanks, Since '61

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PAPackerbacker's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:10 pm

Don't spin the QB when you rip the flag from his belt. That would be roughing the passer :-)

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:31 am

"Replay of a penalty call that causes change of possession or nullifies a touchdown and upon review the ability to reverse the call. Game changing plays are to be made by the football players, not a non playing official. There's no way one ref should be able to change the outcome of a game with a lame call that can not be reviewed and/or reversed. "

Yess.

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Coldworld's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:20 pm

I’ve never been a fire Goodall type, but the incredibly inept handling of this almost universally ridiculed call shows that it is out of touch with its market. For that reason, the owners should seek change before the decline in revenues accelerates.

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Nick Perry's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:36 am

The Marcedes Lewis thing (Limited Snaps) is already driving me bat poop crazy. Now I'm not sure of the number of snaps he had last weekend but it was 7 in week one. The thing I noticed though was EVERY TIME Lewis was on the field good thing's happened.

Montgomery's run around the right end, his longest of the day was with Lewis blocking Hunter IIRC. Hunter wasn't anywhere near the play because Lewis was blocking him exactly where he wanted to until Monty went around the edge. Lewis towers over most and moves them wherever the hell he want's to. He's also not a bad receiver...More Marcedes Lewis Mike. It's just not that difficult to see!!!

Edit...By the way Al...I really like this new piece your providing us each Wednesday. Thanks!

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Razer's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:16 am

I am convinced that we would need a change of coaching/play calling to get an effective run game in Green Bay. Maybe it is MM or maybe it is Rodgers out thinking himself or how teams are just waiting us out but "ground attack" and Green Bay aren't a thing.

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dobber's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:32 am

I guess it comes down to how you define an effective run game. Do you define it in terms of 100-yard rushers? Do you define it in terms of rushing yards per game? Do you define it in terms of per carry averages? Do you define it in terms of a run game that needs to be respected enough to allow your HOF QB without defenses pinning their ears back on every play?

I agree: as long as #12 is under center, this isn't going to be a "3-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust" offense...but the league isn't a run-based league anymore, either.

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TheKanataThrilla's picture

September 19, 2018 at 12:39 pm

Lots of running yards are great, but for me it boils down to:

1. Controlling time of possession. I would like slower scoring drives. The K-Gun offense is great, but if the D gets gassed we get scored on.

2. Converting the 3rd and short yardage. It is frustrating that we do not have confidence to run on short yardage plays.

3. Able to break a long one. It is great to have the pounders, but I like having a RB that the Defense fears could create a huge run or take it to the house. Aaron Jones can do that for us.

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Coldworld's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:23 pm

Actually the production against the Vikings was pretty good. They have a good defensive front. Not many gouge either of the teams that we have played on the ground.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 20, 2018 at 12:00 am

Nailed it Kanata. I wish I could give this 10 thumbs up.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:51 am

I'm not overly concerned with Lewis' playing time right now. I do think we will see it improve each week and is more of a matchup kind of thing.

First week it was all based on how the game went. I think this week they wanted to keep the Vikings spread out more.

I think by the end of the year we will see Lewis playing a lot more. Also I think that is when we will need him. When weather gets colder, and running the ball will be needed more, that is when more 2 and 3 TE sets will be used. With Lewis's age perhaps they are trying more to preserve him then anything?

I also love this piece!

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croatpackfan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:05 am

Nick, I believe it is (low snap count for Lewis) because they tried to play no huddle throughout the game and the personnel for that was 11.

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dobber's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:03 am

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:23 am

I give up expecting anything different from MM. Whatever his strategy is, it makes no sense whatsoever.

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Razer's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:04 am

Hard to disagree with Al on much of this so I'll add a couple of my own confessional items.

Officiating was terrible for the whole game and on both sides of the ball. We had plenty of chances to put this one away and didn't with or without Clay Matthews. The Packers needed to go deeper to get the win and they couldn't.

The defense is a work-in-progress and needs at least another year and at least three more players. Little sustained pass rush against a weak Vikings O-line, poor safety play, forever hurt CBs and not enough talent at linebacker still needs to improve.

The biggest mystery with this team is actually with this offense. A young Patrick Mahomes is tearing it up, a veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick is also on fire and here we sit with one of the best QBs in the league sputtering to get consistent play. Why we aren't burying teams with this QB and associated talent is beyond me. Yes we played some good defenses early but advantage should still be with this offense. Are we stale, predictable or simple not creative enough to be the next KC or Bucs? I don't get it!

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:08 am

Maybe the QB playing on one leg when most other players would still be in bed has something to do with it. Plus no Aaron Jones for the 1st two games. Not to mention that they have faced two of the better defenses in the league for their first 2 games. Thanks, Since '61

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dobber's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:10 am

"The defense is a work-in-progress and needs at least another year and at least three more players. "

I think the key takeaway is that we, as fans, need to be patient with this transition. If the defense isn't getting better as the season progresses--with consideration paid to opponents and home/away--then maybe people can start to complain. But all this, "I thought it was Dom Capers calling the defense," etc., BS is way too premature.

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GRB1531's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:14 am

I see no new plays on offense. Is our new off coordinator coming up with any schemes? Is he calling any of the plays or MM calling every play selection. Look at any of the recent up and coming teams. There is movement by backfield and receivers on many plays. Watch the receiver on their final TD. Easy TD !!!! With Rodgers in command, we should do a lot better in the red zone. WAKE UP MM

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Coldworld's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:26 pm

Let’s see after we play a few teams that don’t have such good defenses.

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Big Moe's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:10 am

If that play by Clay was a penalty, then just blow the play dead AS SOON as two hands touch the QB, now the problem is solved, the NFL is now a two hand touch leauge, F-ing!! Joke.

If I'm a Defender though, this is now a super bad precident, YOU know they are flagging anything, so if you are going to be flagged anyway why not just crush the QB, It's a stupid move by the NFL IMO making it much more likely a QB gets hurt.

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4thand1's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:03 am

Exactly Moe, kill the Qb used to be a sure fire way to win the game. I can see a player in a playoff game blasting a QB for a 15 yard PF to knock him out of the game. The nfl has pissed off a lot of guys who can inflict damage to a QB.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:46 am

Anthony Barr.

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dobber's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:11 am

It's becoming a situation where a defender needs to wrap a QB, hold him upright, and wait for an official to blow a whistle for 'in the grasp'.

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Minniman's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:49 pm

Dobber, I believe that the league wants defenders to now play for the ball not the QB.

The void that we are in now is that there's not enough incentive during the throwing action to incentivize this for defenders.

I wonder if in this emerging environment if the rules around whether a ball was 'live' (contestable) if the ball is dislodged during the throwing action (especially forward arm motion) then this would even this up and make edge defenders actively play for the ball, not the man?

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Gort's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:52 pm

That is exactly why Daniels (I think it was him) pulled up on what should have been a sack.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:23 am

Refs definitely played a huge part in the game! It just can't be questioned. It was brutal.

From the Jimmy Graham 30+ yard pass play that he was interfered with. To the Offensive Pass interference which negated Adams catch for a first down. Who knows what happens if they keep the ball on that drive.
Then they missed a clear hold against Lowry who likely would have had a sack. Called the holding penalty that took away the TD.
Then inside the 2 minutes there should have been penalties on the defense for hitting a defenseless receiver. I think Smith? dove right into Adams head on that TD play. And on the 3rd down Rhodes clearly grabs Adams, pulls him back to get in front of Adams on the throw. That should have been pass interference.
Then comes the worst one and that is Mathews hit which cost them the game.

Refs should not have that kind of impact on a game!

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:47 am

Yup.

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Lare's picture

September 19, 2018 at 11:50 am

So the question is, are the refs really that inept or did the NFL direct them to make bad calls to give Minnesota a better chance to win?

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dobber's picture

September 19, 2018 at 12:30 pm

In these days of breaking stories, anonymous sources, and trackable information, I find it hard to believe that the league could be directing officials this way and for it not to get out.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

September 19, 2018 at 02:05 pm

The officiating sucks. Take part time employee s give then questionable instructions and ask them to make judgements at NFL athlete speed. Fail.

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Lare's picture

September 19, 2018 at 05:34 pm

I was almost hoping the officials were in on some great conspiracy. It's scarier to consider that they are totally inept and are given the authority to dictate the outcome of games.

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Gort's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:02 pm

The conspiracy is that the league will not admit obvious errors in officiating, and I am not talking about the CMIII penalty. There were plenty of bad calls across the board. The officiating of the hole game was a soup sandwich.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 20, 2018 at 12:09 am

It's like the replacement refs never left.

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Handsback's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:43 am

Al, I agree with Nick and like these mind dumps on Wed. On to my responses...It's not that bad penalties are rare, it's just rare when they happen to nullify two game changing plays. That is what stings and needs to be reviewed by the NFL with the new gambling laws, if not pro football will turn into pro raslin!
I agree 1000% with MM on his play calling (if his or AR audible to pass plays) after the HHCD interception. To me it was Seattle all over again and they needed a TD to put the game away. Still think it was a catch by Adams, but all of it is water over the dam.
One last thing you mentioned....King's injury. I watched the Bear's game replay and watched the CBs....King makes a yuge difference when he's out there. If Green Bay can keep him healthy.....they will have the CB position locked down for many years! Maybe a safety like Thomas or equivalent could make that D special. That TD where House was beaten...help had to come from the safety and he wasn't looking at his reads. Also missed the interception when he grabbed air verses the ball on the Vikes last TD.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 07:46 am

"Defense: I was inundated with "Defense sucks" "Same old defense" "Nothing's changed" comments on the CHTV live blog. This is just ridiculous and misguided. It's a defense in transition, a makeover in progress - it's not going to be great after two games, but the differences are striking. They are actually capable of getting stops now. They did it last week. They did it this week -they ENDED THE GAME - until it was taken away from them. "

Well said!
The defense is in transition and will take time. It will take time for Pettine to get a real feel for who is good at what and how to best use each player.
Also getting Burks and Jones back into the defense will really help. Both add a lot more speed.

My hope is that the defense improves each week and by the end of the year they are playing their best.

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:06 am

Al your comments are spot on as usual although I don't have a problem with trying to score a TD after the Dix pick. Throwing on 1st down before the 2 minute warning would have made more sense as you correctly pointed out.

As for the bad calls, I'm moving on. Too frustrating for me to continue to contemplate. I've already posted that this league doesn't care about the quality of play or bad officiating and has become the mamba-pamby football league long before this game was played.

Totally agree on the defensive improvement. This defense can make stops and get off the field. They made two picks to end the game against the Vikings but regrettably the second one was taken away by the aforementioned stupidity.

Nice job AL. Keep these articles coming. Thanks, Since '61

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Johnblood27's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:20 am

Is this Since '61 or Zack?

You really went to the "aforementioned"?

Oh boy...

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croatpackfan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:18 am

Guys, I'm not US citizen and I do not want to mud the water, but I want to share a story from another world wide very popular sport... Soccer, you call it!

There was a lot of people who claimed that many games were directed by referees into the willing directions (referees instructed by league or associations officials). Much larger crowd was mocking those people claiming how it is just ridiculous conspiracy theories. It finally come down to FBI and Interpol made a huge number of arresting very high positioned officials in FIFA (world organization) and UEFA (European organization), showing us that those "conspiracy theories" were real, not being imaginary...

Do not overlook gambling business, as that business has a huge impact on every sport event and every sport. I hope this influence from gambling organizations is and will stay imaginary and never ever become real!

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Handsback's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:12 am

Like I said....NFL becomes like pro rasling.

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Gort's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:08 pm

Nooooooooo, say it ain't so
Raslin is "fixed"?

Never saw that coming.

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Johnblood27's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:22 am

Look a little closer to home for another disturbing example...

NBA refs point shaving.

It is real and with legalized gambling it is about to get a lot worse.

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PackfanNY's picture

September 19, 2018 at 02:56 pm

Anyone who watched the outrageous Canelo Alvarez vs Gennady Golovkin fight decision certainly would support your opinion.
What is parallel to boxing and football is that it is the "business partners" of these sports (ESPN, Foxsports etc.) and their talking heads that fail to cover or question what just happened. You think Tecate the main sponsor of the fight isn't thrilled the "decision" went to the Mexican fighter. Happy by the keg full!
Where is the pressure to get these things right? On the Clay Matthews play the NFL basically said the rule was applied correctly and said things that were demonstrably false ("Matthews left his feet", "Matthews picked him up and drove him into the ground") and the media (business partners) have gone silent.

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fastmoving's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:00 am

in all sports the refs get blamed a lot, about everything. there are always conspiracy therories and 99 procent of them are total BS.

today there are a lot lesser wrong dessions compared to the past. they have a lot of tech support too and nobody made a wrong dession on purpose.

If you a ref you know with all the Talking heads and the slomos they will talk it over and over till the next game.

it unfortunate when ist against us, but we have been on the other end sometimes too. the last two games have been pretty exciting, on way or another.

dont know if the NFL is such a bad product and there are always changes. thats just the way it is. the nfl has to tank 30 year an would still be the best tv Sport and a lot of people will still complain 30 years the eyerything just goes Downhill.

in the big Picture, it was important that MIN did not get a W and the season still look bright…...to me at least.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:37 am

I'm not naive enough to rule out the influence of gambling or any conspiracy, but to me I think the simplest answer might be the correct one, this is what happens when you have corporate management of a sport. Goodell is a CEO answering to a board,hiding behind an incompetent bureaucratic approach to rules. Common sense rarely applies

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fastmoving's picture

September 19, 2018 at 12:35 pm

…..so the "smart money" want a MIN win and all they got in the end was a tie?? where probably everyone loses or was the smart money even on a tie (35 quote??)? no way you can do that……

it would be far more easier and cheaper to influence small stocks or something else you can bett one…...

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 04:12 pm

Just remember Vegas never loses. LVT is and has been correct on that. They are not and have not been there all these years because they lose on anything. Big money creates big payoffs for everyone and Vegas is still way ahead. Follow the money. Thanks, Since '61

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croatpackfan's picture

September 20, 2018 at 03:58 am

It is interesting, I mean, your observation...

35-40 years ago I was basketball referee. Nothing fancy, I was officiating amateur basketball games, league levels several steps from the highest level. It looks like nobody care about the outcome of those match ups...

Still I was in several situation where I was very seriously asked from league officials one question: "You know who is suppose to win "that" game?" My answer was always same: "Whoever will play better in "that" game!" They tried to influence me, as they thought I did not understand the question. But I did. Only, that was my hobby, I was not interested in advancing to higher level leagues. I was asked that for total 3 times only and never again. Also, after the last game, when they asked that question, I was never ever delegated to officiating any important game. Learning from own and other's experience, after 5-6 years of officiating I just stop to be referee. Too many influences and sides.

But, I also learned that smart referees can influence significantly on the game outcome and you'll never ever be in the position to put blame on that referee. Stupid ones (as referee Tony Corrente showed us) makes huge and check-able mistakes, putting league officials in position to back him up on obvious mistakes...
Clever one prepare for the game. Every team has their weaknesses and their strengths. Picking up the judging criterion that will help one opponent strengths to blossom and other opponent weaknesses to be strongly expressed is the best way to stay out of conversation how referee influenced the game.
Stupid ones pick up point of emphasis and than try to evenly distributed your decision on both parties. So when someone told you that you helped one team, you say that the same foul or same penalties you officiating same for both teams. Stupid thinks we are all stupid.
So let see last game against Vikings. I noticed 2 points of emphases. Roughing the passer and PI/OPI penalties. Move on from clear RtP penalties (I believe one or two called in the game), we have 2 that was take for equation - roughing the passer on Kendricks and on Matthews. How convenient. RtP called against Viking was 2nd penalty on the same team on the very same play. First was offside penalty, that was declined and than RtP penalty. All of that happened on 1st & 10, when there is no lot of damage for Vikings. With 5 yards penalty (if that RtP did not called) it would be 1st & 5 and drive would almost surely continued!
Second there was obvious PI penalty on Jimmy Graham, when Packers were deep in own territory, and that pass, if caught, will center them around 40, at the middle of the field. Packers punted (that PI would be seen by blind person, but not by referee!). Second was OPI on Davante Adams in similar field position. They told us they will allow strong physical game of corners (as Vikings like to play, while Packers try to play by the book!), but not of WR (that is opposite - Packers like to play like that, Vikings WR not!).
The stage was prepared! They just waited judging criterion to take over the game. When that not happened, they start to panic. From that panic came fictional holding call on Graham's TD. And the execution of the established judging criterion came on that Clay Matthews QB hit...

The only reason I wrote you this "novel" is that I know referees can make mistakes even game costly mistake! But when you try to justify obviously wrong decision, as NFL did and do, that rise my suspicion on intention!

Do not look for referee Tony Corrente to get another game of this level this season! He is not clever enough...

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4thand1's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:08 am

The NFL is polluted.

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 04:13 pm

Totally and the commissioner and the owners have created and enabled the pollution. The beat goes on. Thanks, Since '61

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:18 am

My wishlist:

1. If King is healthy, move Tramon to safety. Brice is a complete liability in coverage, and I think Ha Ha would thrive with more experience next to him.

2. Since we currently have little burst at OLB, the moment Josh Jones can play, feature him in our blitz packages. Off the edge, up the middle, drop him from an airshow flyover if you have to--just send this guy whenever possible. No excuses; we seriously need some wheels out there. Burks, too.

3. Don't just rotate Aaron Jones in. Feature him. Our QB looks like a statue out there, and we need a real threat at halfback to make defenses think twice before overloading against Bulaga.

4. Just like "More cowbell!", I want more Jimmy Graham. He's making life eminently easier on our wide receivers.

5. Montravius Adams. I love this kid. Time to see what he's got under the hood.

6. Tighter coverage. If our young CB's are really that good--and I believe they are--then don't wear them out allowing easy underneath passes. Allow a few deep balls, since they'll come anyway if we just get worn out by endless 1st downs.

7. A microphone in Mike Daniels' ear with Pettine saying, "It's okay, he hasn't released the ball yet."

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JohnnyLogan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:22 am

Good list. Only #1, I think both our Safeties stink and would immediately sign the best safety out there.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:37 am

Meh, I don't think integrating a new safety into our defense is the best move, especially when Williams has been working there.

I think moving Williams and adding Jones at linebacker would relieve plenty of pressure from our safety group. Besides, I want to see Ha Ha next to someone who isn't lost in coverage, before blowing things up.

But hey, I certainly understand your frustration.

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Jonathan Spader's picture

September 19, 2018 at 03:07 pm

Williams played safety for Pettine with the Browns and rated highly there. Replace Brice with TWill except on obvious running situation. Throw Josh Jones some looks at safety when Burks comes back they can't both play ILB along with Martinez.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

September 20, 2018 at 07:37 am

Love it, JS. Perfect plan.

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porupack's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:22 am

Well, I understand the defense is in transition....but it still sucks. Maybe just a little less than last year.

The packers have delivered a poor performance. Defense included. Its hard to watch and enjoy a game with such poor defense. Was going to buy a ticket to Fedex field at Redskins, but I'm not wasting money on that kind of play.
A few big plays saved their asses (INT off a glanced pass, and an overthrow). But have little confidence that d can hold when a game is on the line. Same ole problems; receivers finding open holes all over with no DB within 10 yards. 6-8 yard runs. Opposing QB running all over making high percentage completions. Can't get off the field on 3rd down after surrendering 1st and 20. Lets just put it this way, this is not a fearsome D.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:52 am

Buy a ticket. I think you'll be pleased this week.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:27 am

Honest comment that many of us want to ignore. This D has improved at the corners, no doubt, but the rest is still awful. OLB's are old and don't have the power or speed to get to the QB, safeties are rarely around the ball and when they are can't make a play, ILB's are slow and now we're hoping Jones, who's been a bust so far and Burkes, who's never played a snap, will save us. It's early and I have hope, but I still think Gute needs to make a move at safety and pass rush signing the best out there. Can't be worse than what we've got.

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Mr.Bigg's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:28 am

Man o man...when I think I take the Packers too seriously all I have to do is read the comments section and I realize my grip on reality is not that bad.

I am really positive after the first two weeks. The D would have had a very good day if Clay's penalty didn't happen.

Our qb has one good leg and still looks great.
Our best running back is coming back.
The grass field is holding up to the real games and looks fab on my TV.
The Pack is going to be in the hunt all year.

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hobowilly's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:31 am

great discussions here. As a west coaster, all that was available to me was W & L, which i've just discovered that can be done and i really love it. They both were ballistic when the CM3 call was made. Regarding the overall team play, i think some offense is missing as i again harp on the lack of creativity and surprise MM continues to use, he's pretty much predictable, but actually did surprise me when he called two pass plays inside the 15 late, but again his "SA" (situational awareness) remains a problem. Last, over the air waves it really did seem the Packers took it to the queens and i dare say, if MM wants to retain his job going forward, he needs a win on Sunday night FB, the Sunday after TG (they're also coming off a mini bye which gives mgmt no excuse for not being prepared with a winning game scheme)

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Bert's picture

September 19, 2018 at 10:44 am

Way too early to start getting upset or worried about the quality of play. These guys play very little in the preseason and have limited padded practice. It's gonna take a few weeks for teams to get their shit together. Really the first 4 weeks or so of the regular season are kind of an extension of training camp. Probably same for the refs. Welcome to the new CBA and NFL.

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PackfanNY's picture

September 19, 2018 at 11:03 am

The problem I am having with the NFL is the inability to admit mistakes and effort to make it better. Instead they outright lie and try to make everyone believe that what you thought you saw was not what happened despite the evidence. If they don't see what is happening and try to fix it then it will only get worse. They can deny, deny, deny but the officials are now a huge part of the outcome and that is problematic.

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fastmoving's picture

September 19, 2018 at 12:38 pm

the refs have always been a huge part……...what About the icebowl QB Sneak......nobody knows if it was a TD back than…….even today nobody is sure besides all of US

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:21 pm

If it wasn't a TD then what was it? Starr clearly made it into the end zone. It's one of the most famous plays in the history of the NFL and no one has ever questioned that it was anything else. What are you talking about? Thanks, Since '61

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4thand1's picture

September 19, 2018 at 05:20 pm

Hmmm, I saw the refs raise their arms and the famous scene of Lombardi raising his arms. IT WAS A TD. Why would you even bring up such nonsense?

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Oppy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 01:17 pm

Remove all QB specific protections while he's in possession of the football. Problem solved.

When the QB holds the football, he's no different than a running back provided he's not sliding feet first.

The QB still has "defenseless Player" protections, while in the act of throwing or just after.You still have roughing the passer penalties, as the QB doesn't have the football in his hands any longer- these are basically an extension of defenseless player rules with stiffer penalties. The QB can still protect himself by throwing the ball away provided he's still behind the LOS and outside the tackle box. But if he's got the ball in his hands, he is subject to the same hits from a defender that a RB is subject to.

This is a simple fix. NFL owners need to come to grips with the fact that QB injuries can and will occur.

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:24 pm

Oppy - you are correct, but the owners know if several of the good QBs go down, they have nothing to watch, because they have created and enabled a passing league with high scoring and little defense. They know the latest 2 generations of fans don't want to watch a 14-10 game because their FF leagues would be meaningless.

They have a growing fan base with an under 60 second attention span so they need to keep the scoring going interrupted with idiotic commercials or they will return to their tablets to play Madden or join some other fantasy world.

The league is vying for entertainment shelf space not competing with other sports. If their top QBs are not playing they can't entertain anyone. Imagine watching games where every team has a Hundley at QB. It would be closing time for the NFL. It's coming anyway, but it will take a while and it will be for different reasons. We're moving from the beginning of the end (over the last 10-15 years) to the middle of the end
(next 5-10 years) and then that flushing sound you will hear will be the end of the NFL at least as we've known it. Thanks, Since '61

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Oppy's picture

September 19, 2018 at 05:11 pm

It is both sad and sobering that you've hit the nail directly on the head.

I would have never considered the fantasy football angle, but you are 100% correct, I do believe it is a part of this perfect storm that is slowly killing football as we knew it.

For what it's worth.. I kind of miss 14-10 games and good old fashioned mudders.

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Coldworld's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:33 pm

But if they water down the game like this, we may not watch anyway. Good medicine, taken to excess, can be lethal.

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:29 pm

Oppy - I miss the 14-10 games as well. Football is only half a game without defense but that's where we are at. As I've posted previously, Nitschke and the rest are spinning in their graves over what's been to NFL defensive play.
Thanks, Since '61

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flackcatcher's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:31 pm

'61. Your right of course, and the owners know it too. The entire rid Goodell movement is all because of the people he has put in place who have so fouled up the rules and on field decisions of the Refs. There are 'whispers' of drafting Bob Harlan to take over on a temp basis after giving Goodell the boot. When I was told of this by an NFL team exec I laughed out load. He was serious, his boss and many other owners understand how bad the situation had gotten even before last weeks mess in Green Bay. Frankly, I don't think it happens, until the owners are faced with the new contract talks and the owner civil war is over. Long way to go.

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Since'61's picture

September 19, 2018 at 09:31 pm

flak - I wouldn't mind seeing Harlan take over but he is 82 years old. If he is up to it he would be great for the league but I think it's unlikely, but we can hope. Thanks, Since '61

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Tundraboy's picture

September 20, 2018 at 12:26 am

Absolutely superb Since 61. Until now, I never seriously thought it was possible because of the inherent beauty of the game, but as you pointed out social changes ,fantasy football , shortened entertainment attention spans, could very well make football as a sport unrecognizable as we know it.

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Since'61's picture

September 20, 2018 at 07:58 am

Thanks Tundra. The league is doing what many other industries do. They are transitioning their business to current and future market segments because that is where their money will (hopefully) come from in the future.

Make them a fan while they are young and impressionable with high scoring and big plays. Reel them in with Fantasy football and now legal gambling and you have someone who probably watches even just casually for most of their lives. They have never seen or learned the finer points or techniques of the game like solid tackling or good pass defense so they have different expectations about the NFL then we do, based on when and how we learned the game.

The league is making the game accessible to an increasing number of casual fans who are in it for FFL and gambling, not for the quality of the game itself or their loyalty to one team.

Radio was and is the prefect medium for baseball, TV the perfect medium for football, especially since replay started back in the mid-sixties. Pete Rozelle realized this back in the late 50s and early 60s and transitioned his game and his audience to TV. And now you can watch it on tablets, phones etc... All you need is some type of monitor. However, Rozelle did not ruin the game to make the transition. He just knew that if he built it they would come and we did. Rozelle's league was built off of the 58 title game between the Colts and the NY Giants with overtime and a great performance by Johnny U. His NFL was based on hard nosed football with great defense and the passing of Unitas. But now the league is based off of no defense and the offense allowed to throw the ball all over the place unimpeded by defensive play.

NBA and Hockey are OK with TV but live is the best way to watch those sports. Hockey in particular is tough for a casual fan to stay with on TV.

If you're not a fan of a particular NFL team all you need is access to NFL Redzone. There you see all the big plays and and scoring you want. And that's what the league wants you to see. Not the ebb and flow of the game, not what it takes to get in position to make those plays or the techniques required. Just reel in the fans and bring in the $$$$. Thanks, Since '61

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Tundraboy's picture

September 20, 2018 at 07:53 am

Again,perfectly stated.

"Radio was and is the prefect medium for baseball"

As a Yankee fan I have to say was. Sterling and Suzie are insufferable. That Sterling is the voice of the Yankees is sickening to me my personal dislike for his style aside, I don't understand how you can listen to radio tune in the game and have to wait 15-20 minutes just to find out what the score is. Again he must be catering to the younger demographic ,but to me with baseball anybody listening on radio almost always is an avid fan and very knowledgeable fan. I for one do not need to hear a soliloquy about the game of baseball or even something as mundane as explaining to me that the Yankees are wearing their home jerseys with the interlocking NY,as if anyone of us tuning in do not know this already.

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Since'61's picture

September 20, 2018 at 09:18 am

Tundra - agree Sterling and Suzie are totally insufferable. I can't stand that Sterling needs to give every player a nick name and a personal HR call. It is stupid and unnecessary. I still miss Mel Allen. For me, he was and still remains the voice of the Yankees. Thanks, Since '61

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Tundraboy's picture

September 20, 2018 at 07:43 pm

I miss Rizzuto, White and even Messer. Rizzuto was like watching a game with your Uncle.

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Gort's picture

September 19, 2018 at 08:22 pm

Someone elsewhere suggested bringing back the "in the grasp" call. It might cause a few more sacks on some elusive / slippery QBs, but it might prevent some injuries.

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flackcatcher's picture

September 19, 2018 at 06:11 pm

Greats comments Al. Only thing to add is it's critical to keep Ty Montgomery and Aaron Jones healthy. In baseball terms Ty Mo is five tool player. Changes the entire nature of the offense, extremely rare in pro football. Jones is explosive, but at this stage is only a three tool player, more of an specialist at this stage in his career. Still, these are the kind of players Green Bay needs to feature if they are going to make a championship run this year.

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Jonathan Spader's picture

September 20, 2018 at 11:06 am

TY has barely been used and when Jones was at his most explosive with Hubdley under center he wasn't used enough. What makes you think MM will suddenly change his ways and use Jones properly and get TY more involved? Before game 1 the return of Philbin is what gave me that happen. After game 2 that hope has all but died and the talk about scrubbing the playbook looks like it was just that, talk.

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Barnacle's picture

September 20, 2018 at 12:26 pm

MM is not very good at connecting the dots. He is also very stubborn. He probably tries to make good decisions, but he is not good at anything he does that requires a quick decision .........challenges, time outs, play calling or answering press questions.

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flackcatcher's picture

September 20, 2018 at 06:44 pm

Second half of 2016 they featured Ty Mo in two and one back set. His ability to run pass routes out the back field(see 2016 playoff vs. NY) put tremendous pressure on NY LB taking off rush pressure on Rodgers. Before Adams got hurt in Dallas playoff, Cowboys had LB on him. Couldn't put pressure on Rodgers with LB and Ty had good rushing first half. Both second halves of Bears and Vikings games were completely difference in execution of offense. That's Phibin putting the hammer to MM. Still, the question remains on how the Packers will use both backs giving both MM and Rodgers tendency to sling the ball around.

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Cartwright's picture

September 19, 2018 at 11:46 pm

All I can is... WEEZ WUZ ROBBED! But on the bright side we are still undefeated and neither the Bears, nor the Vikings beat us in tough games we should have lost. This is a good start. We are being battle tested already and cutting the cake and the season hasn't really started yet. What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger.

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