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Jennings, Receivers Have To Deliver In the Elements

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Jennings, Receivers Have To Deliver In the Elements

When the Packers and Bears last played on January 2nd, the Packers' wide receivers played arguably their worst half of football as a collective group during the first half. Drops from Greg Jennings and James Jones, a fumble from Donald Driver, poor blocking in the running game from Jones and Jordy Nelson - you name it, the Packers receivers were doing it, and most of it wasn't very good.

As stellar and as brilliant as the wide receivers played down in the climate controlled conditions of the Georgia Dome on Saturday night, it all means very little now with a showdown on the shores of Lake Michigan looming Sunday for the right to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. The wide receiving corps, lead by Greg Jennings, is the oil in the machine that is the Packers' offense run. Aaron Rodgers may be the operator, but he's only as good as his receivers' play, to an extent.

When the Packers last appeared in an NFC Championship game in 2007, Donald Driver was the lone receiver who seemed to set up his game in the brutal cold. Greg Jennings, for whatever reason, disappeared that day. The Packers simply can not afford a repeat on Sunday against the Bears.

Lovie Smith's team did a good job of taking Jennings away in the initial matchup in Week 3 earlier this year. After an opening drive touchdown on a post from the slot over Brian Urlacher, Jennings was barely heard from again in that game. In the Week 17 matchup, McCarthy did a much better job of working Jennings free (that, coupled with the absence of Jermichael Finley, who Rodgers definitely zeroed in on down in Chicago) While Jennings posted decent numbers (4 catches, 97 yards) he would have had a monster game had he caught the two passes he dropped, especially what looked like sure-touchdown in the first half.

Much has been made of James Jones' inconsistency throughout the season, and for good reason. But more than anything this Sunday, Greg Jennings must come to play and McCarthy and Rodgers have to find ways to feed him the ball.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (17) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

rich's picture

i live out here in illinois and i can say they better be practicing in the snow this week because it is crazy out here with all the snow and sleet.

POOCH's picture

Sunny and 25 on Sunday

POOCH's picture


packeraaron's picture

Hmm. Someone on Twitter just linked to saying it was going to be 17 degrees... Cat and mouse even w/the weather... ;)

Ken at UWM's picture

Winds are supposed to be calm, which is a nice departure from the usual 40-45 mph gusts off that sewage-infested lake.

Bearmeat's picture

I see highs in the upper teens to low 20's and a wind of 4-7 mph off the lake. No big deal....(keep your fingers crossed that this doesn't change)

PackersThad's picture

Crimmings and I were talking about this. The receivers are already talking about the field. McCarthy (or each other) needs to tell the receivers to play the game without worry. If the receivers are not 100% focused on their play, they will not succeed.

sammer's picture

"Talking about the field?" I'm pretty sure they were asked about the field and answered the question... the field *is* crappy and it *does* affect the receivers. In order to prepare for the game, the receivers need to prepare for the field conditions and be ready to adjust.

They'll be ready... this ain't their first game in the winter at Soldier.

Ken at UWM's picture

Our receivers shouldn't worry about the field. If anything, skill position players and pass rushers relying on speed have an edge because they know where they're going. Guess who that gives an edge to...

It'd be nice though for the receivers to play a game without an obligatory fuck-up.

Bearmeat's picture

Pretty simple - if our WR"s don't turn the ball over and catch all the passes thrown their way - we win. No one's back 7 can keep up with our skill positions on O.
As a side benefit, even if we don't score on long bombs, it would reverse the field and make punting to Hester MUCH easier.

Wiscokid's picture

The receivers just have to suck it up for one more game and then they can go to Dallas and play indoors.


FITZCORE1252's picture

What's the new avatar Kid? I see cheese, and what else?

djbonney138's picture

The nice thing about playing Cutler is if we can get him rattled early we basically turn C Wood, Tramon, Collins, and the rest of the d into receivers as well. Go Pack Go!

FITZCORE1252's picture

More than any time this season I really think an early lead would be HUGE. 14-0 or so, make Cutler and Martz force the issue and go into self destruct mode. For some reason I doubt we as fans will be that lucky. This will probably be a gut-wrenching down to the wire game. No doubt in my mind we win this game, I just think I may have an ulcer by the time it's over.


Jon Bendewald's picture

The bears are going to experience some serious CLAYHEM. 52 is so athletic, he will overcome any turf issues better than others. The bears o line will falter. Of the four teams remaining, here is my quarterback ranking: 1. ARod 2. Rothlisberger 3. Matt Flynn 4. Sanchez. cutler doesnt make the the cut. GO PACK!

Jon Bendewald's picture

Oh and there will be so many Packer fans at Soldier field, we will hear the "KUHN" loud and clear!

sfBVGS's picture

aye but greg jennings got the team on his back tho

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