Cory's Corner: Unleash Jaire Alexander

Let Jaire Alexander prove why he's one of the best cover corners in the game. 

It happened again. 

For the second straight year, the Packers laid an egg in the season opener. But the 23-7 loss to the Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium felt like a frying pan to the face. 

“Encouraging and frustrating at the same I guess because we have the opportunity to be really good, but not if we let certain things happen,” said center Josh Myers. 

That’s exactly right. The Packers had plenty of opportunities, which was highlighted on the very first offensive play of the 2022 season. Rookie Christian Watson left cornerback Patrick Peterson and safety Harrison Smith in his wake en route to dropping a surefire touchdown on the Minnesota 32.

The frustrating part was watching Minnesota receiver Justin Jefferson chew up and spit out the Packers secondary to the tune of a career high 184 receiving yards and two touchdowns. Jefferson, the 22nd overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, is arguably one of the best receivers in the game. The 6-foot-1 wideout has a fishing net as a catching radius complemented with the speed of a tiger. 

“I think it’s very similar to how we used Davante (Adams) a year ago,” said Packers coach Matt LaFleur. “When you have a premiere player like that, that has the versatility and the routeability to run many different routes, that’s a huge advantage for the offense.”

What’s even more frustrating is that Jefferson rarely went against Jaire Alexander — arguably one of the best cover corners in the game. Putting Alexander on No. 3 wideout K.J. Osborn and tight end Irv Smith, Jr. isn’t why the Packers gave Alexander an $84 million extension in May. They gave him that sack of cash to stop the best receivers in the game and the Packers are going to see Jefferson twice a year for the foreseeable future. 

“If you want to change the structure of your defense, you could certainly do that,” LaFleur said. “If you watched that game, there were many times throughout the course of that game where it wasn’t just single motion, it was double motion.”

By all means yes. The soft zone wasn’t working very well coach. There were times that Jefferson wasn’t even covered. That cannot happen. There are two Vikings you have to stop — Jefferson and Dalvin Cook. If that means following Jefferson all over the field, have Alexander shadow him and do that. You could still play a zone and one look with Alexander being the lone exception, with Alexander understanding that his assignment is first and foremost Jefferson. 

The Packers are going to see Mike Evans, Terry Mclaurin, Stefon Diggs and Cooper Kupp before getting Jefferson back at Lambeau Field on Jan. 1. 

Having Alexander stick to one side of the field doesn’t really help the defense when you’re playing elite receivers. That’s why it makes sense for Alexander to go wherever those guys go. 

The good news is that this was one game. And there is even more good news: the NFC has plenty of holes. Tampa Bay didn’t look that impressive on offense, the 49ers lost to the Bears of all teams and the Eagles survived a late comeback by the Lions to get a win.

The Packers defense is just fine. Just let them do their job. 
 

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Cory Jennerjohn is a graduate from UW-Oshkosh and has been in sports media for over 15 years. He was a co-host on "Clubhouse Live" and has also done various radio and TV work as well. He has written for newspapers, magazines and websites. He currently is a columnist for CHTV and also does various podcasts. He recently earned his Masters degree from the University of Iowa. He can be found on Twitter: @Coryjennerjohn

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Comments (44)

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NickPerry's picture

September 13, 2022 at 06:27 am

“If you want to change the structure of your defense, you could certainly do that,” LaFleur said. “If you watched that game, there were many times throughout the course of that game where it wasn’t just single motion, it was double motion.”

Well shit coach, if you don't do SOMETHING different against elite WRs, this could become a trend. It's this type of RIGID thinking that will get you beat in this Leauge... Well, actually get your ass stomped, you know, exactly like Sunday Afternoon!

Oh, one other thing...MLF has got to give Aaron Jones more than 8 or 10 touches. I forgot the exact number, but it wasn't nearly enough. He's your best or at the minimum 2nd best offensive weapon you have. GET HIM THE BALL!!

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lawatrain's picture

September 13, 2022 at 06:42 am

Exactly. You know if the defensive coordinator cannot devise a plan to stop the best receiver in the NFL what is he doing? We are not talking about a novel concept. Matt LaFleur Just got beat badly by 2X Green Bay Packer defensive coordinators. Ex Packer defensive coordinators…

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Hematite's picture

September 13, 2022 at 06:50 am

The Packers players appeared confused by the game plan that never changed or adapted.
The Packers simply got out coached,in my humble opinion.

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Leatherhead's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:10 am

I think that as the season progresses, we're going to see that Cousins-to-Jefferson is one of the top connections in the league. Better than Fields-to-St. Brown, like we're going to see this weekend.

I had some teams that had weak lines. Give the ball to your horse and hope for the best. Don't get your QB killed.

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Coldworld's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:30 am

Jefferson is truly a great receiver, but it was all too easy for him. Barry got schooled in terms of his game plan. However, the D looked like they had not practiced with anyone challenging zones like that (they hadn’t). That coverage was I’ll chosen, but it was horribly executed too, and the latter made it look much worse. This team was woefully prepared in both sides of the ball.

If ESB has even close to the season Jefferson has, LaFleur and Rodgers should both retire based on that alone , having got next to nothing from him for years. I don’t see it happening, of course.

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LLCHESTY's picture

September 13, 2022 at 02:54 pm

It's foolish to even bring up ESB as the Bears WR1 when Mooney had over 1000 yards last year. ESB is 3rd at best and 4th at best as soon as Venus Jones is back.

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T7Steve's picture

September 13, 2022 at 07:38 am

If you want to change the structure of your defense.......

No! Why do that? Just ask the Vikings to play along with the D you choose like good sportsmen.

Actually it doesn't mater if we don't fix the O line and get better on the D line too. Was it Coldworld (not sure) that suggested keeping Caleb Jones active and using him in a Jumbo package at the goal line? line him up tight end, tackle or guard next to Nij / Lewis and see if they can't get low and get some push. I remember agreeing and we both got some thumbs down.

They better have a plan besides trying to run behind Hansen. What do they see in him that we don't? If they're right, and he's the best choice, we're in real trouble.

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Johnblood27's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:10 am

Pad level...

Cleaning that up...

We'll look at that...

Where is my eyebrow teaser...

No more yak yak yak. I expect to see changes where there were weaknesses, you know adapting from intelligent observation...

Offense - Hanson - outta the lineup. Newman stapled to guard or the bench, more AJones, more AJDillon, less 2 TE packages, more Tonyan on 3rd downs, more Tom, less Watkins and Cobb and more Watson and Doubs (mistakes be damned, they must learn for this team to be competitive later).

Let me just say - there have been many instances of OL playing in their rookie season and doing just fine, Meyers, Tauscher, Clifton, Sitton, Colledge, etc. tom has earned the chance to play on this OL NOW! The kid Walker looked like a legit RT in the short time he played for example. Even raw Caleb Jones was serviceable in his snaps. Get em good or get em gone. I have more patience with the young guys than I do with poor performing guys with experience.

Defense - Barry needs to put his players in positions to succeed - AS A DEFENSIVE SQUAD - not just as individuals. If he cannot figure out how to field a solid, mistake free, defensive squad given the caliber of players and their experience he needs to hit the door right now. The entire DL room needs a collective kick in the ass. Blitzing should not be a dirty word, the secondary has the talent and skill to succeed when another rusher is added to create pressure.

Wefense - nothing glaringly bad, nothing glaringly great. O'Donnell was close to blocks a couple times, perhaps some blocking reminders to the punt team guys is in order. If the gunners can do their jobs well, the blockers can remain on their man a beat longer and still get down to cover the kick, have confidence in your teammates doing their J-O-B, and you do yours.

The biggest change i want to see is mlf having a better plan and seeing the team - both offense and defense - adapt and change as the game goes along to exploit the scheme being run out there by the opposition.

Success isn't determined by how great of a plan you make, it depends upon how you adapt when your plan isn't working perfectly (which plans rarely do).

Let's get this done - It's BARE WEEK!!!!!

On a lighter note, i didn't see any of Crosby's kickoffs come close to being blocked... LOL!

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T7Steve's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:35 am

That's what the biggest bitch about Mike M. was. Started with a serviceable game plan with 15 scripted plays. He could never adjust! It worked most of the regular season games but, didn't work against playoff teams.

When they fired him and hired MLF I thought we'd be through with that but, we've had to discuss this many times already. Wish the team was good enough to dictate that what ever they did was executed correctly and the other team couldn't do anything about it. Seems like the other teams are dictating to us.

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CoachJV's picture

September 13, 2022 at 01:22 pm

No... More... Pad Level.... I can't... I just can't

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stockholder's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:13 am

This secondary is going to keep getting Torched.
Savage is No Collins. Alexander is No Charles Woodson. Stokes is No Traman Williams. And Peprah was better than Amos.
The 2010 secondary knew how to get the INTs. This secondary doesn't.
It wouldn't have mattered who Alexander was on.

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Johnblood27's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:28 am

Savage is a major concern. He cannot seem to make the plays he needs to from the safety position. With his speed that is just baffling. He must be dumber than a sack of spuds if doesn't get himself into the proper position to make the plays he needs to after 3 years of coaching and supposedly learning.

Bring on Abernathy...

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Rarescope's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:35 am

“ The 2010 secondary knew how to get the INTs. This secondary doesn't.”

That seems like an overly broad conclusion to draw from one poorly planned game. I remember an interception or two from the same guys last year.

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Untylu1968's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:03 am

Hey, you might as well get used to the stupid talk! The peanut gallery, comes to life with every loss, and naturally has all the answers. It's unacceptable to lose a game, not win every superbowl, and just wait until you draft a guy, that may not be on they're radar. It is although , highly, and very cheap entertainment I guess...?

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Rarescope's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:43 am

LOL no doubt.

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coolhand's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:46 am

The scary part for me was Barry had 2 weeks to prepare for this game and his plan was play a soft zone and no pressure on Cousins?

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PatrickGB's picture

September 13, 2022 at 09:00 am

We overestimated our coverage plan and underestimated their scheme and talent.

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Coldworld's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:37 am

We overestimated our level of readiness. The choice of scheme was poor, but the way it was executed was very poor. The players just were not meshing and a zone scheme without smooth transitions is essentially a sieve. It was full of holes.

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Rarescope's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:45 am

And it feels like this is par for the course when it comes to Packer's defense. I'm still trying to figure out if it's just my bias or if we really do make things look difficult that other teams do with ease.

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Coldworld's picture

September 13, 2022 at 02:07 pm

I’d say he got it right when it mattered last year and, after the first few weeks, more often than he didn’t. I think that it was exacerbated by the poor execution. I think that was lack of time playing that way and should improve.

Still a bad choice. I think they expected Jefferson to be used like he was last year. That’s concerning (since it’s the same approach we used with Adams in a same tree O), but I think we need to accept that a bad strategy then got greatly exacerbated by how poorly it was executed as a team, particularly in terms of how we handled transitions.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:51 am

The key is to not over react to anything that happened in the first game. If we want to overreact then does that mean we shouldn't throw any more deep throws to Watson because he dropped what would have been a 75 yard TD?

While we can't overreact, it is a perfect time to reflect on the loss and learn from it. What they should have learned is that they need to find a better way to cover WR's better. There is absolutely no reason that Jefferson should be running wide open. There is no reason that Preston Smith should be covering a WR let alone Jefferson. They have to have a better plan, and they have to execute it better. The fundamental plan should be putting 2 players on Jefferson every play. He should be doubled every down.

They have some fundamental issues to work out for sure. But looking at it from the outside to me the biggest thing they need to clean up is the miscommunication. There were far to many miscommunication issues. Which the first game of the year is to be expected. Especially facing a new offense.

Our defense will be fine. Just need to fine tune some things.

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Rarescope's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:49 am

"If we want to overreact then does that mean we shouldn't throw any more deep throws to Watson because he dropped what would have been a 75 yard TD?"

Absolutely not. Thankfully I missed this play as I was still riveted to the Bengals/Steelers OT but I think they should have immediately dialed up the same exact play. If not on the next down at least on the next series. At least they did eventually go back to Watson but man, in hindsight they might as well just have tried throwing long bombs to all of the rookies every play. That would have been something even if they only connected on a small percentage of them.

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Coldworld's picture

September 13, 2022 at 02:22 pm

All receivers drop balls. Even Adams. Any deep throw like that has as lower chance of success. Now, that was a perfect throw that most catch almost all the time, but it was also perfectly safe. There was no risk of interception and he’s a rookie playing his first ever snap in the nfl in any game, preseason included. Of course you factor in the chance he muffs it.

In those circumstances, given that it’s Watson, his current value is as much about stretching Ds as about hauling them in, but if you keep throwing he makes space for others and will catch some. It’s painfully clear he wasn’t keeping anyone we could not do without off the field.

We saw the same thing with Toure in game 2 of the preseason. We saw what he could do in game 3 but we ignored him after that in game 2. We saw Watson catch a 24 yarder from Love later on. Which veteran receiver got close to that much of a gain? We never tried Doubs deep or Watkins ( though he looked slow). Laughably we did try Cobb. We didn’t even play Toure.

We need to realize that we may win with the rookies and that we won’t win with Watkins and Cobb and their 1 point something yards per route run. No start in WR with that return over 30 plus snaps is anything other than evidence of a major problem. 2 in one game really speaks volumes about the gap between this team’s perception and reality. This was a team with a suspect secondary.

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PatrickGB's picture

September 13, 2022 at 08:54 am

In all fairness, To change coverages from zone to man in seconds is tough on a defense. It can lead to more problems than it solves. Campbell said that he likes Barry because he lets players be players. Campbell does not like a lot of last second calls and adjustments. Minnesota knew that. I went to their site before the game and they said that they were going to target Quay and the linebackers. They said they were going to move Jefferson around. Apparently, we ignored that possibility and/or thought that our players could overcome it.

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LLCHESTY's picture

September 13, 2022 at 03:04 pm

People screaming they should have played more man is basically them saying they don't know that much about football. Jefferson said they did everything they could to keep him away from Jaire. O'Connell had 6 months to scheme it up and it worked. If a team is willing to work that hard to keep their best player away from your best player you have to take advantage of it and they didn't.

As it was Barry played a lot more man than he normally did last year. From ESPN:

"However, the Packers actually played less zone than it might have appeared. Barry called that type of coverage on 51.5% of opponent dropbacks, which, according to ESPN Stats & Information, was the seventh-lowest rate among the 30 teams that had played in Week 1 through Sunday."

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arthurl's picture

September 13, 2022 at 09:03 am

Sorry, don’t agree with the answer by the coach. During training camp there was speculation Alexander would either play in the slot or the boundary. There are certain teams you have to adjust your structure to if you want to be effective. Everyone knows that Jefferson is elite and you can’t play soft zone against that talent. These coaches had all preseason to get ready for this first game and the philosophy on both sides of the ball was flawed. The right side of the offensive line under performed in the preseason, yet they rolled these same two players out against the Vikings. That soft zone didn’t work for the defense. The coaches should know better seeing as they see this team twice a year.

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canadapacker's picture

September 13, 2022 at 09:07 am

Ok - I see that people are panicking the same thing as they did last year. And the fault certainly does lie with Lafleur and perhaps AR. There is one big thing that everyone has been commenting on - and that is how sloppy everyone is because they dont play the starters until Game 1. They are correct.
I had said and we blew it again - we need to fix the red zone and we blew it. Of course if one looks like at last nights game - Denver obviously didnt have their red zone offense working either - and their special teams was not working either. Maybe just a big hole in Lafleur's organization and planning binder.

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splitpea1's picture

September 13, 2022 at 10:54 am

What a dud debut from Hackett. He's getting roasted in Denver big time right now.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

September 13, 2022 at 09:43 am

Listened to LaFleur's press conference and it didn't inspire confidence. He didn't want Jaire on Jefferson because he went into motion, sometimes double moves. Wow, double moves. And if Jaire was on Jefferson it would change the assignment for ten other men. What a load of nonsense.

We were all excited by the talent on this D but last year this same D, granted minus Jaire and Quay, gave up over 28 points per game for a long stretch in the middle of the season. Kept getting bailed out by Rasul. I continue to believe that Barry is a major liability. And LaFleur will continue to sound like McCarthy "We'll get it fixed" while doing nothing.

To me, this was a wake-up call to how bad LaFleur and Barry are in big games. This was a big game even though it was the opener. The players have to feel, deep down, that they're being handcuffed, despite what Campbell said about Barry. They just don't look like they're attacking. Ever.

The defense is soft and so is the offense. A reflection of the coaching.

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Coldworld's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:41 am

Barry was stellar in the big game last year. He got this one wrong. LaFleur has never been stellar when it really matters.

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Starrbrite's picture

September 13, 2022 at 04:57 pm

I completely agree—it never looks like we are attacking; especially the defense.
I was led to believe LaFlurry was an offensive genius —maybe it’s me and I don’t know what I’m looking at. The goal line play was a huge eye-roller.

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TarynsEyes's picture

September 13, 2022 at 10:39 am

The problem with the Packers isn't talent, perhaps a limited character flaw, but certainly an inability to accept that certain reactions and inaction are more detrimental to the team than doing the opposite.

We all seen the game, and we all know the issue, but the issue lies with the same two people whose mindsets are at odds with what needs to be done, but appear incapable of acknowledging their individual flaw and why this team, like others before, recently and longer, end up in the same place at every season's end.

One tore away part of the game playbook because of a dropped pass, one cannot in-game adjust by having his coordinators make adjustments to the obvious issue, less any that are deeper in the scheme contributing to the disarray witnessed.

Can one deny that there may be a battle of wills between Rodgers and MLF? Both say they want more Jones, but neither seemed to push the issue in-game where it was needed, and not in each post-game presser leaving us to ask, who is keeping it from happening.

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Since'61's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:18 am

Taryn your point is a valid one but if there is tension/disagreement between MLF and Rodgers these issues need to be resolved during the pre-game preparation. These are two professionals. If they can't come to agreement during the game planning process neither one should be in their current roles.

I think that Rodgers believes in and sees the value in MLF's offensive approach. I also think that the problem is that he is smart enough to realize that the Packers do not have the personnel to carry it off effectively. The OL is compromised without Bak and EJ. The receiving corps no longer has a game changing player. He knows that if he relies nearly completely on the RBs that they will not make it through the season.

The question is not whether there are internal problems on the team or between Rodgers and MLF the issue is how will the team respond? Winning solves numerous problems on any team. Will they rally and use their frustration on their opponents or will they continue to blunder through their pre game preparations which will result in continued on field confusion and ineffectiveness. I'm hoping for all parties to find their professionalism and get this team on track.
Thanks, Since '61

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TarynsEyes's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:53 am

"Winning solves numerous problems on any team."

Winning makes for feel good moments, but it certainly doesn't fix issues, as has been the case under MLF for three seasons come playoffs, and for numerous seasons under MM come playoffs. Regular season wins are the makeup to cover the ugly blemishes, but are always revealed by the better prepared. Rodgers and MLF's ugly blemishes are always revealed when the games matter most. The schedule for the Packers is the base for the cover of blemishes that allows wins to conceal even more, the playoffs wash away the makeup, and reveal the real you, and why many refuse to look and accept in image in the mirror. I hope it changes this season, even the best makeup can't cover forever.

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Coldworld's picture

September 13, 2022 at 02:30 pm

Which is why the endless rehearsal of LaFleur’s win/loss record is as empty as it is deceiving. Winning it all is about winning when things aren’t going your way against good teams when it matters. That’s not something LaFleur and Rodgers manage. It’s a bad marriage. They diminish each other.

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Coldworld's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:53 am

LaFleur wanted his starters to play in the preseason. Rodgers pushed back and finally LaFleur conceded that he’d come around the Rodger’s point of view. That’s always been the pattern with these two. LaFleur had a system based on the illusion of complexity. Rodgers didn’t like that and wanted stable personnel and calls after he surveyed the field. The illusion vanished and LaFleur was claiming 80% of the O went through Adams a year later.

LaFleur doesn’t coach Rodgers, he’s not changed Rodgers’ approach but repeatedly changed his to align with it. That’s been the case from the start. It’s just as true in games as in planning. The driver is Rodgers and always has been. Unfortunately the team is built to fit LaFleur. Yet the most snaps last week went to Watkins and Cobb, who Rodgers championed and who managed laughably bad yards per route run.

If this team is to win with this roster, LaFleur needs to make Rodgers play to his team and scheme. That’s something LaFleur is incapable of. Yet LaFleur wanted Rodgers back. Sadly for us and both of them, this partnership has not evolved as neither of them have. Unless it does, this year was a huge mistake.

Fortunately, there are a lot of positives on this roster for the future. Unfortunately, LaFleur is the guy we will still be relying on because Murphy just extended him. The whole Packers organization is a self perpetuating exercise in swallowing it’s own hype. Wolf would never have let this happen.

That’s ultimately the cause of us wasting Rodgers and an increasingly strong roster and it’s so deep rooted that it lets us foster the belief that we can win without Adams with some rookies and Rodgers and don’t need to worry about what our opponents are saying they are going to do but just about how well we execute in practice. Last week this delusion saw the field at RG, in snap counts, personnel choices and game plans and in the outcome. It’s the same type of delusion that saw Drayton defended until his unit killed us.

When we match up well schematically or on talent it looks great, but when others don’t do as we expect or thwart us, we’ve no plan other than to let Rodgers run free because he’s calling the shots. Even with Adams, our O got worse as we abandoned the scheme for Rodgers ball. We were best on O before Rodgers had his first recent MVP in hand and the LaFleur scheme was most developed. We regressed last year. This year game one on O was last year in the Championship minus Adams. The results were unsurprisingly poor.

Maybe someone with power in Lambeau is still objective and can break the glass and force us to play to our strengths. I doubt it, but it’s going to take that to unlock this roster with these leaders. I have no hope that LaFleur is a character capable of making that happen. Perhaps Gute or Murphy can force it. I don’t bet on it, though Gute might be the last best hope.

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Since'61's picture

September 13, 2022 at 01:28 pm

Coldworld, LaFleur hasn't changed Rodgers approach because Rodgers is the one on the field, in the thick of the fight. He was coached by MM to be a matchup QB. He continues to look for the best matchup on every play. That approach worked better when the Packers had a more talented receiving group. Over the last few seasons Adams was all that was left in terms of winning matchups. Now Adams is gone.

Our best matchup at this point is A. Jones and the Packers need to get him the ball more often both on the ground and in the air. Also, the OL needs to be more effective. We should keep in mind that Lazard will be back, hopefully sooner rather later, and his return should help the passing game look better.

Let's remember that the team looked bad in the opener last season and then went on to win 13 games. There is no reason to give up on the team or Rodgers at this point.

I believe that the problems with the Packers begin much farther up the chain of command than either Rodgers or LaFleur. As a very successful non-profit organization Packers management, i.e., Murphy and the Executive Board, are concerned about the revenue stream and the brand image. League revenue sharing and a sold out stadium for the next 20-30 seasons has long since solved their revenue concerns. That leaves the brand image. "Carry the G" etc...

The brand is about championships, "Titletown". However 2 championships since 1967 doesn't really holdup to the hype presented by management. However consistently making the playoffs with HOF QBs does maintain the brand image of a well run organization that has a chance every season. What else can any fan ask for after all?

IMO, this is why Rodgers is still here. He perpetuates the image that the Packers can still make the playoffs and maybe even win it all if everything breaks right for the team. Come playoff time we learn yet again that "the emperor has no clothes and the Packer executives are empty suits. It's not about the decisions that are made during the offseason it's about what is actually driving the decisions. Money/revenue is clearly not driving the decisions or they would never have paid Rodgers the amount of money he received in his latest contract and pushed all of the salaries down the salary cap road. But the fear of letting Rodgers go and team possibly suffering through numerous sub-500 seasons or returning to a 70s/80s era of play and there goes the myths of Titletown, the well run organization and the executives' jobs and heaven forbid the precious brand image.

Fear is a powerful motivator. Unfortunately it is a bad motivator that often results in bad decisions. There's plenty of time for the Packers to get this season right it's just difficult to see it coming together after only one game.
GPG! Thanks, Since '61

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Since'61's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:02 am

The first week of the NFL season is always the most over reacted week in sports. If your team wins they are on their way to the SB, if they lose the sky is falling and the season is over.

Poor preparation and poor planning are the first reason for the loss to the Vikings. That's on the coaches. No excuse for being out prepared and out coached by a rookie HC and his staff.
Second reason for the loss is losing the LOS on both sides of the ball. Our OL did not play well allowing 4 sacks and 5 QB hits plus inadequate blocking for the ground game. Our DL never consistently pressured Cousins and there were too many big run plays up the gut of the defense.
Third reason is a terrible coverage plan for our secondary which allowed Jefferson to have the best day of his career.
Finally Rodgers needs to pick his team up when the team is going off the rails. He is allowed to get frustrated but he can't carry it throughout the game. His line of 22 completions out of 34 attempts is not bad but I would say that he was efficient but not effective. The one TD scoring drive in the 3rd quarter was a nice example of running the MLF offense. A good mix of runs and passes. The Packers need to do more of that and Rodgers needs to support his young receivers. A little support can help a young receiver with their confidence as they are still learning the offense and their role within it. Thanks, Since '61

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Handsback's picture

September 13, 2022 at 11:45 am

Rams, 49ers, Packers, Denver all lost. What do they have in common? Have people figured out the McVay system or do all of those teams not have their stuff together for the first game? Just something I wondered about.
I watched the Viking game in detail last night. OM, the defense was either not prepared for the looks they saw from MN. or they don't have a clue about zone concepts. There were times that you had two DBs shadowing one guy while another WR ran in front of them and they didn't react. The Dline didn't look at all like a top 10 unit.
The Oline, well they get paid as professionals, they just need to act like it. Lots of missed opportunities starting with Rodgers and including the WRs.
Burn that recording and hope it's just first game jitters.

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PatrickGB's picture

September 13, 2022 at 12:29 pm

Alexander would love the challenge of playing the top WR. I think he is up for it. Smart offensive coordinators will try and avoid it with schemes and motions. We did that to other teams with our use of Adams. I read somewhere that many of our DB’s do better in man than in zone. But no defense can play man coverage the whole game when the opponent knows it. It’s too predictable and has its own weakness.

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LLCHESTY's picture

September 13, 2022 at 03:13 pm

"But no defense can play man coverage the whole game when the opponent knows it. It’s too predictable and has its own weakness."

Exactly. In today's NFL it's all about disguises and variations designed to make the QB hesitate. When you have coverage breakdowns there's no hesitation on the QB's part. Barry played more man than he normally did last year. I think it's as simple as this was a huge game for the Vikings and O'Connell schemed it up for months while Barry didn't spend months worried about the 1st game. The Tampa game week 3 will tell us if they have fixed the coverage issues.

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PackersWinning's picture

September 13, 2022 at 03:01 pm

You can not logically Rodgers throws a beautiful, one of the best e er, still. However it’s his concentration and decision making that seems to have dropped off. Trying to go to 17 against lockdown double coverage at the end of the game when he had a wide open receiver in the middle v. SF was a giant mistake. Not pulling the ball back and jogging around the end for a score against the Vikings is another.

Happened when he tried to hit Cobb against the Vikings when he was blanketed…..inception. His fumble was another bad decision. Lastly the marriage of personal feeling with business/personnel decision is always a bad idea. Is Big Dog really still the big dog? 10% of his touches last year resulted in turnovers. Cobb is at best a part time role player you can put in packages where he’s the 4th or 5th option and covered accordingly

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DeezNutz's picture

September 13, 2022 at 05:08 pm

Joe Barry’s defense has the illusion of competency.

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