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Packers Fall to Rams 29-27

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Packers Fall to Rams 29-27

There was 2:05 left on the clock when the Rams kicked off and gave the ball back to Aaron Rodgers and the Packers for a chance to win the game with a field goal. It seemed like Rodgers would do what he has done repeatedly in crunch time, but the opportunity was wasted. Ty Montgomery fumbled on the kick return and the Packers (3-3-1, 1-1-1 NFC North) suffered a tough 29-27 loss to the Rams (8-0, 3-0 NFC West) on the road in Los Angeles.

In a game where the defense came up huge and the offense was able to make some big plays, it still was not enough to snap the Rams unbeaten streak. According to ESPN’s statistics, Rodgers had a decent day going 18/30 for 286 yards and a touchdown off of an impressive 40-yard pass to rookie Marquez Valdes-Scantling in the 4th quarter.  

The Rams were the toughest team that the Packers faced so far this season and after their win today, remain the only unbeaten team in the league so far this season. Worrying about star running back Todd Gurley was a task that the Packers handled about as well as they could in the backfield, but they saw significant trouble in their secondary coverage with him and multiple other Rams throughout the afternoon. On all three of LA’s touchdowns they targeted Green Bay’s safeties.

On their second touchdown of the day quarterback Jared Goff found Gurley unbelievably wide open for a 30-yard touchdown and the two-point conversion as well. Although the Packers did a fairly decent job containing Gurley’s run game according to ESPN’s statistics, he was still dynamic enough to lead the Rams in receiving yards Sunday with 6 receptions for 81 yards.   

What went right: Overall defensive performance 

Although the safeties struggled at times Sunday, the entire defense as a whole surely showed up ready to play in LA. The Packers shutout the Rams in the first quarter and it was the first time they were held scoreless in the last 13 quarters according to the FOX Broadcast.

As a whole, the defense had 5 total sacks and 8 hits on Rams quarterback Jared Goff. To put that in perspective, before the bye week the Packers defense only came up with 2 sacks and 4 hits on 49ers quarterback C.J. Beathard and 3 sacks and 5 hits the week before on Lion’s quarterback Matthew Stafford according to ESPN statistics.

It seemed like every guy got a piece of Goff as Blake Martinez (1), Clay Matthews (1), Kyler Fackrell (1), and Kenny Clark (2) all recorded sacks on the day.

Although Gurley did snag a receiving touchdown, the Packers never allowed him to rush into the end zone for a score. It was the first time in three weeks that Gurley did not rush for a single touchdown.

“Our defense was outstanding there throughout the first half,” coach Mike McCarthy said at the post-game press conference. “You could see that both teams were wearing down, the guys fought, and congratulations to the Rams they put out a tremendous effort.”

What went wrong: Turnovers  

When the Packers are up against as good as a team as the Rams are, they cannot afford to give them any free passes, and they gave up two, which ultimately lost them the game Sunday.

In the second quarter, a questionable Packers run call on their own 1-yard line led to a safety by Ram’s linebacker Mark Barron. Why the Packers chose to run on their own 1 instead of throwing a quick pass to one of just many of their talented wide receivers was the question that most people had looming through their minds after that play.

However, the play call that resulted in the safety was not the only turnover that was running though Packer fans’ minds at the end of Sunday’s game. With 2:05 left on the clock the Rams were set to kick off to the Packers and all Green Bay needed was a field goal to win. Ty Montgomery was set to return, and after the kick went deep into the end zone, instead of taking a knee, decided to run the ball out. After Montgomery made the poor decision not to kneel even though the Packers would get the 2 minute warning, you think he would have held on to the ball for dear life, but he did not, was stripped, and the Rams forced and recovered a fumble.

This was a costly mistake by Montgomery and it ultimately robbed Green Bay of the chance to win considering that nobody in the NFL is better when they are down in the last two minutes of a game than Aaron Rodgers. McCarthy spoke about the play at the post-game press conference below:

 

Offensive Player of the Game: Davante Adams

Once again Davante Adams showed up for the Green Bay offense and proved why he should be noted as a top receiver in the league. Via ESPN statistics Adams had 5 receptions for 133 yards on 7 targets for the day and picked up several big first down plays. It was his third straight game with over 100 receiving yards. He had the longest catch of the day for the Packers off a 48 yard pass where he burnt Marcus Peters to make the play.

Defensive Players of the Game: Blake Martinez and Jaire Alexander

As I touched on before several players stood out on the Packers’ defense Sunday, but two were consistently making plays all afternoon. Linebacker Blake Martinez led the team in tackles via ESPN statistics with 12, 7 of which were solo and had 1 sack on the day. There were numerous times that Martinez blazed right through the Ram’s offensive line to put pressure on Goff. His preparation for this game did not go unnoticed.

Rookie corner Jaire Alexander had himself a tremendous afternoon as well in his first game back after suffering a groin injury. There were zero signs of rust from the corner and via ESPN statistics, the rookie had 7 total hits, all of which were solo and broke up a few different critical pass plays. Alexander seems to have an extremely intelligent football IQ and brings a different energy to the Packers’ defense. His presence on the field was certainly missed in the weeks that he was out with his injury.   

Up next, the Packers travel to New England to face off with Tom Brady and the Patriots. Kickoff is set for 8:20 PM EST.

 

P.S. Can Aaron Jones get more touches? The dude can play.

Sarah Kelliher is a contributor for CheeseheadTV. She can be found via Twitter @sarahkelliher4

 

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (42) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Packer Dave's picture

Props to all the Packers fans who showed up to that game. They may have outnumbered home fans.

This should really be Mike's last year coaching this squad. Play calling isn't just bad, it's stupid.

stockholder's picture

The common Sense party! Remember Wendall Middlebrook. Stop the Dilly Dilly and try the High Life. Life is Good. The Packers played a game that was fun to watch.

GBPDAN1's picture

I was at the game and we definitely out numbered Rams fans. It was a blast

Packer Fan's picture

This game is on MM and Zook. Calling the run play on the one yard line is bad. A safety can happen all too often. And it is MM and Zook's responsibility that their players follow direction. Especially Zook in these situations. They are showing that the coaches do not have proper control over the players. And the offense sputtered again for half the game. This loss is just disgusting again. And I said this before, get rid of Whitehead. Too many plays where he was slow or late.

fthisJack's picture

i don't know why Montgomery is returning kicks anyway when you have MVS with breakaway speed sitting on the bench. Monty is slow with no change of direction....he is not a kick returner.

splitpea1's picture

I wish we could clone Alexander. Good job Gute for finding the speed we need back there.

The TKstinator's picture

This new 23 is much better than the previous 23.

Bearmeat's picture

Yeah. Although that 23 is admittedly a jerk, he is also a better Free Safety by a factor of two than anyone we have on our team... smh Capers/TT and MM.

nostradanus's picture

The Packers have some nice young talent, but they also have a serious lack of discipline and that’s in McCarthy.
It’s time to show him the door!
His message is stale and he is not getting his players to buy in.
Montgomery should be made an example of by cutting him immediately, but they won’t because they Packers have become as soft as mozzarella cheese. Another losing season should end McCarthy’s tenure hopefully.

The TKstinator's picture

When Packers lose:
1. Question playcalling
2. Call for firing(s)
3. Call for cuts
4. Claim to have been outcoached
5. Blame officiating
6. Slip into boozy slumber

fthisJack's picture

when they snatch defeat from the jaws of victory......what do you expect?

The TKstinator's picture

I expect a little more from a varsity letterman.

dobber's picture

I think your old man and my old man should get together and go bowling...

Since '61's picture

I'm watching the game and I'm thinking we are exactly where we need to be. A little over 2 minutes left and we're going to get the ball on the KO and Rodgers is going to lead us to a game winning drive FG, maybe even a game winning TD. I even posted before the game that I was hoping to keep the game close and have the ball in Rodgers hands with 2 minutes to play. Since we only have one TO left there will be less than 30 seconds remaining after we score, maybe even an FG within the last 5 seconds.

This is great, the Packers are going to beat the undefeated Rams and we're going to have confidence and momentum going to New England and we can turn this entire season around.

And then wait, what?!?! Monty is coming out of the end zone! Why? How is this happening and then poof!!! Fumble all gone. Stupid! Stupid!! Stupid!!! Football.

A great effort wasted either because of a bone headed decision by a player or more likely because none of our 25+ coaches know enough to tell the player in no uncertain terms that he is NOT to take the ball out of the end zone. How can this happen after the 2014 NFCCG??? Are any of our coaches paying attention??? There are just no excuses for this.

We keep finding ways to beat ourselves. It's unnecessary and stupid. I never like to lose but beating yourself with stupid football is unacceptable at the professional level. I don't care what era this is.

This team is just awful in situational football. Same with the Safety. Throw a slant to Adams or God forbid to Graham! Why did we sign this guy? Where is he with his great height advantage. If the guy is covered throw it away and line up again. High School football teams know better. Stupid! Stupid!! Stupid!!! Football. Goodnight. Thanks, Since '61

CAG123's picture

Really? I’m tired of close games I was hoping they would come in and punch them in the mouth and for the first quarter that what it seemed like this team could have been up 13-0 maybe even 17-0 if the offense hadn’t fallen asleep for a quarter and a half.

Mojo's picture

Agree CAG, I'm sick of moral victories, learning experiences, self-improvement crap and lost seasons. Same ol' same ol'

Rak47's picture

Tbh, most games the Packers lose they don't seem to get dominated with Washington being the exception this year. They find ways game in and out to just flat out blow it. A really dumb penalty, AR holding the ball too long, key uncontested drops on 3rd down, lax ball security, miscommunications. McCarthy it seems may have created a culture of mediocrity which the Packers just can't seem to shake.

jlc1's picture

Hey, no mention of a special teams player of the game. i'm sure it was just an oversight...

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Josh Jones, probably.

freddisch's picture

MM preaches accountability.. Now he has the opportunity to apply it. Can Monty and Zook. Undisciplined players will lose you games every time..

stockholder's picture

Can MM win the big games. Well he missed on one tonight. The team played well. Mistakes happen. But is MM to blame when a player can't use common sense? We now think Monty's stupid. But the truth is; today to many players run their mouths. They don't do what their Told. They want Love. Even if it's tuff Love. Instead of No comment, I screwed up, I apologize. No further comment. We think the worst of Monty. MM hasn't lost control. Pulling the plug on the season is ridicules. It's ludicrous not to support Mm, when such a big game is the result of a brain fart. Some things don't come easy.

CAG123's picture

He called a run backed up into his own 1inch line and didn’t even use the short yardage back they spent the entire first half keeping momentum away from the Rams and their fickle fan base only to give to them right before the half? It’s more than just a special teams gaff this game was winnable and they could have put tremendous pressure on the Rams if they go into the half up 13-0 or 17-0.

fastmoving's picture

if you read some posts here, we looking way more like the fickle fan base.

fire everyone after another blow out L against a bad team at home. all bad, so sad, so sad. worst football game in the world ever.........
Believe me, I understand this stuff better than anyone else in the world. we have to fire them all and there mothers too and then we will never lose a single game.......

fthisJack's picture

that stupid run call from 7 yards back in the end zone cost them this game. who in their right mind calls that play with the Rams D playing the run?

dobber's picture

OK...take your pick. Run against Aaron Donald and Suh on the goal line or drop back to throw against Aaron Donald and Suh on the goal line. Hmmm.

Kb999's picture

A much improved performance but for a couple of screw ups and we end up with a L.

12guage's picture

Couldn't agree more since 61...

Mojo's picture

As bad as the game ended the call that infuriated me the most was the run play up the middle that resulted in the safety. I said do anything but run up the middle.

And before you say it's easy to state that in retrospect, I made that observation BEFORE the snap. The strength of GB's o-line is not power running, It hasn't been in a long time. Plus you're going into the strength of LA's D motivated with the knowledge if they get penetration there's a good chance for a tackle for loss and a safety.

Roll Arod out and look for a short dump-off even if it's for two yards or Arod can run for a couple himself. If that doesn't work try it again. Anything to get off the one inch line.

Instead in a game we were dominating the entire half, we give up a safety and have to punt the ball back. It gave them life and changed the complexion of the first half and momentum into the second.

Stupid stupid call.

AgrippaLII's picture

McCarthy is done. Time to gut the team. Get what you can for some of the players who will be FA's at the end of the season and get ready for the draft. The Packers aren't going to win the next three in a row...and that's what it'll take to have a shot at the playoffs.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Time of Possession in 2nd half (it was warm in LA):
LAR: 18:25; GB 10:35.

After Green Bay went up 10-0, it then went 23-3 LAR. During that latter period, Aaron Jones had 2 carries. GB lost the TOP battle in the first half as well, 15:45 to 14:45.

One would think MM would figure this out. With Wilkerson on IR, Adams and Lancaster played some snaps. Brice also did in fact play. I didn't notice him, so that might be good. Perry also did in fact play. I didn't notice him: that isn't good.

Whitehead played well as a linebacker in the Burnett role containing Gurley in the 1st half. He didn't play as well in the 2nd half in zone as more of a traditional safety.

Oppy's picture

This confirmed a few of my suspicions.

I did see Brice play, it seemed to be a result of Whitehead either taking a breather or being pulled due to poor coverage in the second half. Not sure which.

As far as Perry goes, it looks like he was being asked to set the edge and/or occupy the tackle on many snaps. It looked like the general game plan from Pettine was to stay conservative on the edges to turn everything inside, and rely on ILBs and DBs for delayed blitzes through the running lanes.

Ustabeayooper's picture

Montgomery was told to take a knee! He was pissed because of lack of playing time. His own ego and selfishness came ahead of the team. They can deactivate him for the rest of the season and give his playing time to Jones. He will be gone from GB after this year. He has no value as a receiver or RB and has always had ball security issues.

PAPackerbacker's picture

I wonder why MM didn't follow up with what he said last week about Aaron Jones needs more carries? Only 12 rushes in the game. MM finally realizes what needs done by that statement last week, yet he doesn't get Jones more than 12 rushes in the game? Jones should have had 12 rushes in each half. The players for the most part did very well. It's the poor coaching that lost the game again. Running the ball out of the end zone with 2 minutes left was just plain stupid, showing total lack of discipline. This is a game that could have been and should have been won, if it was managed better. Started off strong, but didn't remain strong, and finally ended horribly. Same old same old.

Lphill's picture

Cut Whitehead move Tramon to safety.

fthisJack's picture

i hope they find a taker for HHCD. he isn't the future or the present. this is the one area on the team i was hoping they would solidify in the preseason. there were some good S available but BG went with what they had and its coming back to bite them!

tincada's picture

Sweeten the deal and offer to through in MM.

ollie418's picture

No way that was a catch by Gurley on the sidelines. He was bobbling it all the entire time.

Terrbile reversal.

ILPackerBacker's picture

I dont know how anyone, much less a writer could have watched that game and praised the defense and overlooked Clark.

Wake up

tincada's picture

I like what I heard on the radio today. Immediately call John Dorsey and offerup McCarthy for a 1st round pick. If john doesn't jump on it we'll know we got a pig in a blanket.

podrick's picture

The Rams were the toughest team that the Packers faced so far this season.
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tocnaza's picture

The Rams were the toughest team that the Packers faced so far this season.
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