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Packers Remain Winless on the Road, Fall to Vikings 24-17

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Packers Remain Winless on the Road, Fall to Vikings 24-17

The Green Bay Packers’ road game struggles continued Sunday night, as they still remain winless on the road this season after falling to the Minnesota Vikings 24-17. The Packers (4-6-1, 1-2-1 NFC North) were struggling on both sides of the ball Sunday and Kirk Cousins and the Vikings (6-4-1, 2-1-1 NFC North) took full advantage of their mishaps and mistakes and put away their NFC North rival after ending in a tie in week two.

For the Packers, post season aspirations seem quite out of reach at this point and the areas in which they struggled in all season continued to be the biggest parts of their problems Sunday night.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers struggled Sunday, going 17 for 28 with 198 yards and 1 touchdown according to ESPN statistics.  After starting the game in vintage form with a back-shoulder touchdown pass to Davante Adams, Rodgers' play declined as the game went on. Multiple times 12 missed wide open receivers, one critical late in the game to a wide-open Adams in the end zone.

At the post-game press conference, Rodgers said, “It was just a bad throw,” in regards to the missed opportunity.

What we learned: This team may never get it together.

It seems like every game so far this season has been an opportunity for the Packers to fix obvious mistakes and yet every week they have failed to do just that.  

Turnovers on special teams, poor offensive line play (especially after briefly losing David Bakhtiari), injuries in the secondary, and uncharacteristic play from Rodgers continued to haunt the Packers in Sunday’s must win game.

It is just the fifth time in franchise history that the Packers have opened a season with six straight road losses. It has been 39 years since this last happened.

What went right: Davante Adams has his first 1,000-yard season

Although there was a lot of negatives Sunday night, Packers fans around the world should be able to smile knowing that they have Davante Adams on their football team. Adams has consistently been the playmaker for Green Bay the past two seasons and for the first time in his career went over the 1,000-yard mark Sunday.

Adams finished the night on top of Green Bay’s receiving group with 5 receptions for 69 yards and a touchdown according to ESPN stats.

What went wrong: Almost everything

It had seemed like Mike McCarthy finally did what all Packers fans wanted him to do all season: go for it on fourth and inches.

But of course, it just could not be that easy for McCarthy.

Even with a timeout.

After taking the time to game plan, the Packers came out with what may be one of the poorest play calls all season, resulting in the Packers getting stuffed well short of the first down. From there, it seemed like the Vikings took over and gained all the momentum they needed to put the game away.

“We’re about winning football games. We didn’t do enough. I need to coach better,” coach Mike McCarthy said at the post-game presser. “I’m proud of the way the guys battled. We didn’t have enough tonight and they had more than we had.”

As hard as it is to admit, the Packers were just straight up outplayed yet another Sunday this season. They looked ill prepared on defense and allowed the Vikings to gain back offensive momentum after they struggled against the Bears last week.

Missed tackles on defense hurt them consistently Sunday night and too many times they allowed what should have been 1 or 2-yard gains turn into first downs and then some. They also were not able to force any turnovers when they desperately needed one.

Running back Aaron Jones made his sixth straight start for the Packers Sunday and finished with 17 carries for 72 yards and a touchdown according to ESPN stats. He also had 3 receptions for 21 yards on the night. He has sort of been the Packers “secret weapon” this season, but Minnesota seemed prepped and ready for him in the backfield and were able to slow him down, something teams have not been able to do all season.

Offensive Player of the Game: Davante Adams and Equanimeous St. Brown

As I touched on before, Davante Adams made history with his performance and proved yet again that even when a top corner (Rhodes) is covering him, if the ball is in his hands he can make plays. With his score tonight, Adams hit his 10th touchdown mark of the season, making it the third straight year he has reached double digit touchdowns for the Packers.

Rookie wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown seemed to gain some trust form Rodgers Sunday. According to ESPN stats, he finished with 3 receptions on the night for 53 yards. One play in particular turned heads for man, as Rodgers made a pass while St. Brown was facing the opposite direction and he was able to turn around and come up with a big play.

Impressive stuff from the rook.

Defensive Player of the Game: Jaire Alexander

Despite one slip up in coverage Sunday, rookie cornerback Jaire Alexander was tasked with covering two of the NFL’s best and for the most part did a good job in doing so. Alexander had a nasty block on star receiver Adam Thielen, pushing him directly into another star reciever in Stefon Diggs for a 10-yard loss.

Alexander finished with 7 total tackles, 6 of which were solo, and 1 tackle for a loss according to ESPN stats.

Up next, the Packers get a visit from the Arizona Cardinals at Lambeau Field. Kickoff is set for 1 PM EST.

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


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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (48) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

ollie418's picture

It’s simple:

MM gets out coached every game, especially in the second half.

Poor clock management every game.

Play calling is brutal.

Team is not very good.

Nick Perry's picture

There's just nothing to say anymore. The Vikings went in and made halftime adjustments and the Packers didn't. Aaron Rodgers played like Christian Ponder and Kurt Cousins played like well, Aaron Rodgers. The Vikings were converting on 3rd down (50%) the Packers weren't (20%). There's much more that went wrong but what's the point...I sound like a broken record.

The Packers are done, cooked, and looking like they may finish under 500 for only the 4th time, since 1992 and 3rd time without losing the starting QB for most of the season. Matter of fact I heard someone say the Packers were running the SAME offense now as they did in 1996. THAT sports fans is on McCarthy. Why oh why is it so easy for the Packers to cut a player one year early yet hang onto the dinosaur Mike McCarthy. I appreciate MM, I really do. He WAS an excellent coach for this franchise and IMO can be for someone else again. But McCarthy needs a break to retool his creative self and the Packers need a permanent break for MM.

Looks like another early year of looking at who the Packers might draft...Possibly in the top 10 this time. Good-night Irene.

Bearmeat's picture

This had better result in Mike McCarthy being fired. It just had better. And it had better result in a restored GM position in full charge of football activities.

I want a young and innovative head coach who can make ARod play on schedule. One who will keep Pettine.

That's all I'm gonna say about that.

RCPackerFan's picture

I haven't been on here for a little bit.
But I brought this question up on Twitter.

IF the Packers let McCarthy go, it is not guaranteed that the new Head Coach would keep Pettine. So for argument sake lets say that IF McCarthy were to be gone, then Pettine is too.

So Would you rather have McCarthy and Pettine OR a completely new staff?

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

Completely new. No question.

I'd rather have Pettine as HC and have him hand the offense over to a creative OC as well

JimR_in_SoCal's picture

Pettine makes us feel there’s hope for the defense, even when the defense didn’t hold up particularly well against the Queens. I guess that says a lot about how awful we felt the Capers defenses had become. If MM is fired and Pettine isn’t retained, oh well.

splitpea1's picture

New staff! It's a necessity at this point. If MM hasn't adjusted his offense or replaced the special teams coach by this time, he never will. Love to keep Pettine, who has done a great job with a lot of young players, but it's more important to get new leadership at the top if that's what it comes down to.

Nick Perry's picture

"And it had better result in a restored GM position in full charge of football activities."

Agree 100% BM....

stockholder's picture

Not happening. A-Rodgers gets the easy part of the schedule. I'm still going for wins. The SS play has been a failure all year. Morrison is cast off, and where is Burks? 2 picks for a no show. Brown doesn't have it. The secondary still has problems. Is Jackson Rollins? So far Gute has not come up with the players this team needs. AS much as you want to retool, this team has no answers against a blitz. And the packers had no blitz. (And thats on Pet.). So Fire away. Start with the special teams first.

Tundraboy's picture

Nailed it NP

Kb999's picture

There toast

dobber's picture

There wolf?

packerbackerjim's picture

Where wolf?

Gforcetrivers's picture

We are one player away from becoming the Browns.

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

No, we need to add one player to become the Browns.

JimR_in_SoCal's picture


Lare's picture

Time to tear this thing down. Will be painful to watch Rodgers and others having to learn a whole new offensive scheme, but it has to be done as this team is going nowhere with this one.

Will also help the team to bring in some new coaches and hopefully get the special teams out of the cellar for the first time in years.

And, the Packers need a complete overhaul of the strength & conditioning program. You just can't compete when you have half your team out with hamstring and groin pulls every year.

Changes are never easy, but the Packers organization has to do what it takes to get to playing competitive winning football again.

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

Andrew luck looks great under Frank Reich in year one, McVay had the Rams looking great in year one and unstoppable in year 2
I don't buy the thought that it's going to take a couple years to learn a new system. I bet players are chomping at the bit for something else.

Tarynfor12's picture

" I bet players are chomping at the bit for something else."

Proof our players are mostly nags.

dobber's picture

Frankly, the challenge of #12 having to learn a new system might focus him and get his head back on straight. It's a cerebral challenge more than a physical one, and hopefully he'll embrace it.

RCPackerFan's picture

This game sucked.. Plain and Simple

We should have seen the writing on the wall before the game even started. No Mike Daniels, No Breeland, No King, No Cobb. That's 4 starters that were out before the game started.
Then the game starts and they lose Brice, Bakhtiari, Taylor, Trevor Davis, and whoever else?
The 2 injuries that hurt them the most were Bakhtiari and Davis. Davis's injury put Tramon Williams back at PR. And we seen what happened there. Had he just caught the ball Vikings don't get the ball back, Packers maybe have enough time to go down and get the ball back at the end for one more desperation play. Also, losing Davis hurt them on Punting. J'Mon Moore replaced him as a gunner and he wasn't very good at it.

Injuries aren't the only reason why they lost, but we have to be honest, they played a part in it.

At this point, I am focusing on the draft. Here is a nice little nugget. If the season finished today they would have the 11th draft pick, and honestly the Saints look like they will have the 32nd. Add those 2 picks together and they could trade up to about the 4th pick. So, they could end up with a star player. Thats good.

packerbackerjim's picture

We have now moved on to looking-forward-to-the-draft part of the season. The need to have multiple positions addressed is too great to reduce 1 high pick (N.O.). I have no doubt Gute will be active in FA, but this season shows how far away they are. To me, the OL and DL should be the focus of draft and FA.

RCPackerFan's picture

If they kept both of their first round picks, as of right now they would have 3 picks in the top 43. That would be pretty nice. That could be enough to turn the team around.
That being said if they can go up and get a Star, I do it.

I truly believe Gutekunst will be more active in FA.

This draft looks strong for the Pass rushers. Something they could really use!

packerbackerjim's picture

I agree that if a “star” were available at 4 instead of 9 in the draft that was a game changer. Bosa seems to be “that guy” and the rest are 1B. Not much of a drop off in the top 10, IMO.

stockholder's picture

Bosa is a bust. He'll always be hurt. I like Ed Oliver more. The draft boards on many draft site's will change after Indy. Montez Sweat keeps coming up for the packers.

Old School's picture

Why wouldn't we get a QB to help this team transition to the post-Rodgers era??

RCPackerFan's picture

Agreed. I haven't looked hard into the draft yet, but looks like it will be time to start.

Bosa could be THAT guy for sure!

Citizen AJ's picture

I totally agree Jim , the key word here is players as in plural ! This is a team right now that has very little talent . A lot of average players at best with a few aging stars and a very good QB . A total overhaul is needed here starting with management on down to almost every position . This is a very key time for the future of the franchise .

stockholder's picture

The Focus should be on Free Agency First. I'm very disappointed in the team defense. With points on the board, the packers just couldn't stop them. Yes, pet is better than Capers. But he is not the direction this team needs. I want a new alignment up front. The only guy that has a job next year is Clark.

RCPackerFan's picture

Yes it will be for the Packers. But for us we have no idea who will be free and won't be free. We can at least look at the draft and know most of the players that will be available. One of the reasons the draft is a huge fan favorite.

Don't lose sight that the defense was very shorthanded. Already playing without Daniels, King and Breeland. They also lost Brice in the game.

Clark is who you build a defense around. Daniels is still a good player. Personally I keep Mathews. While he isn't the pass rusher he once was, he is still a good player that can make plays.
Martinez is a really good player. They have Alexander who is terrific. King when healthy is good. Breeland, maybe they could resign.

They have needs but honestly they have a good core of players. Give Pettine a few more pieces and the defense will be much improved.

stockholder's picture

I agree on CM3. Martinez was lost at first last night. I 'm sure he missed Daniels. I'm not a Pettine fan RC. He's been better than Capers. I think the 3-4-4 or looks must go. I still think the packers would do better with two new Des. Daniels is a good player. It won't hurt to keep him. But he's gone if this team doesn't win. Clark has shown the packers need speed up front. And that is what they must draft. Alexander has shown they need speed in the secondary, and thats what they must draft. The packers can't get locked in on filling holes. The packers must draft speedy guys that can change this defense.

Old School's picture

From the start of training camp, we lost Ryan, Wilkerson, Daniels, Perry, King, . We also traded Dix, cut Whitehead, and put House on IR.

That's 5 starters and 8 out of the game day active 21 defenders. And it doesn't include Brice, who is a starter but is playing with injury

I'd like to see another year under Pettine with some draft picks and some FAs. But if McCarthy gets canned, there's no guarantee we'll get him back.

Tarynfor12's picture

" We should have seen the writing on the wall before the game even started."

The writing was on the wall for a long time and as clear as day but most followed and believed in the weekly excuses, which did a great job of covering the 'writing on the wall.'

stockholder's picture

Most of that is because people still believe in Arron Rodgers. The guy is lost out there. He can't throw short when his mind is down field. Adams is not Nelson. While Adams has improved. A-Rod still misses that clutch, go to guy that every QB needs. The players just are not responding to his Old ways. The wish for Nelson Cobb and Finley is past.

flackcatcher's picture

What you wrote RC. They finally ran out of bodies tonight. Early third this game was done. Not enough quality backups. But we all knew that from the beginning of the season. This is where drafting in the lower third bites a team. With a little luck this year could have been special. Oh well......

Bure9620's picture


Clark and Alexander are young studs, building blocks for the future.

EQ is ahead in his development, progressing nicely

2 1st rounders Yay!! (We need them)

Thought Martinez was solid, would like to see a 2nd contact for him after next year

It's never as good as it seems or as bad as it seems! Haha, its pretty bad, but a good draft and key FA signings could turn the ship around faster than many think. And yes, I am now officially in the move on from McCarthy camp. Rodgers needs a coach to challenge him and resurrect him.

Pierre's picture

The reality that is difficult to accept is that the Packers, with Rodgers, are now just another losing team trending towards the bottom of their division like the Browns, Bills, Cardinals, Giants, and Jags. Not much to look to going forward until they get another QB playing as Rodgers’ decline has been quite evident...he’s consistently inconsistent in completing passes to sustain drives and unable to play 4 solid quarters in one game. He cannot lead this team to wins any longer. 62% completion rate isn’t going to win games in the NFL. (Rivers was 28/29 in passes completed yesterday!)

Time to see what Boyle and Kizer can do playing QB the rest of this season as Rodgers is no where’s near playing the QB position at an elite level for the money he is being paid. How many years can the Packers afford to have him playing at such an ineffective level that every other QB out plays him and they lose games...because of his poor play. And stop with all the senseless excuses...Rodgers is being paid to carry a team as the QB...not to have great players around order to win games! No team should be paying a QB this much that they are limited in signing other good players...and then keep on losing games for what could be 4-5 more years. Enough of watching this poor QB play and Inability to win a road game!!!

Packer Fan's picture

Time to dump McCarthy now. The team and coaches need something to rally to. And that is to rally around themselves. There is no reason to keep MM. Murphy needs to realize that and move on to next year. Consider if they could run the table and make the playoffs, will they win the Super bowl? No chance so let's move on

Lphill's picture

All I want for Christmas is s new head coach .

Old School's picture

Understand that by saying that, you're probably going to be replacing Pettine after one year and Rodgers shortly after.

Unless you think we're going to get a miracle guy who can get a declining 35 year old to change the way Rodgers plays.

dobber's picture

If Pettine goes, Pettine goes. I'd like to see him stay, but it's winning championships married to the long-term health of the franchise that matters. Pettine's status as a coordinator is a significant piece, but shouldn't be the factor that decides how the organization moves.

The Packers have hitched their wagon to #12 for at least the next 3 years, anyway. Right now, it surely seems apparent that MM CAN'T get Rodgers to change his ways. That's a known. The unknown might be all they have to hope on for those seasons until it becomes viable to part ways with QB1.

Handsback's picture

I got back to watch the game when Bak went out. It seemed to me that the pressure came from the guards and not the tackles. Regardless, Green Bay didn't look good and after 10 minutes I went to bed.

I mentioned last week that the Packers are missing established experienced receivers and it shows up in close games. So Rodgers has Adams and rookies to throw to, right? Nothing against the rookies, but MVS and ESQ aren't Moss level or even #2 receivers. With Graham and his broken thumb, essentially you're saying to the defense "no passes to the TE".

The defense got little to no pressure on the QB, and with the Vikings OTs there should have been pressure all night. Again too many injuries on the defense and Josh Jones looks like a rookie. As much as I admire Rodgers....he's playing like an average QB.

Even stating all of my observations....I hate to see a coaching change, but suspect one is coming. The team looks pathetic. Maybe the first half was great, but teams have to win the second half to be champions.

Altered Idol's picture

Having slept a little and taken stock, the time has come for this franchise to make drastic changes that were probably necessary three or four years ago. I've never been on the fire McCarthy bandwagon until relatively recently but I'm now a fervent backer. He makes winning games more difficult, not easier and for that alone, he needs to go.

He's far from on his own in deserving blame. Thompson's reticence for free agents and a series of terrible drafts have left this roster short of quality. Murphy should have fired him two seasons ago but persisted and helped create this mess. The injuries issues are so consistent, something has to be done with the training staff.

Rodgers has been below his standard and needs to be held to account for that. Many others are underperforming too unfortunately. This roster needs to be stripped down and build back up.

On defense, we have a genuine stud in Kenny Clark, a promising CB in Alexander and some good players in Daniels, Martinez and Lowry. Burks and Jackson have potential too but safety and OLB are dumpster fires right now.

On offense, we have Rodgers. We also have a top 5 WR in Adams and a quality back in Jones. We have 2-3 good linemen and a decent TE. We need better guards and a young TE and maybe even another WR.

This team hasnt been far away in some games but we've been lucky in others. We deserve to be where we are and we need to act accordingly.

Donster's picture

Fire MM today! Let Philbin run the team until the season is over. I've said it before on this forum. I'd settle for Pettine to head coach and bring in an accomplished OC, or an up and coming candidate.

Pettine is doing a good job with what talent he has to put on the field. The secondary is decimated AGAIN. We are average at LB, inside and out, except for Martinez.

They must put Cobb on IR, if he shows no medical improvement by Friday. Bring up Kumerow and let's see what he brings to the table.

Gute needs to bring a veteran high quality WR for next season. No guarantee these rookies will be able to carry the load next year. So many hit that sophmore jinx. J'Mon Moore looks to be Gute's first bust in the draft. And a starting TE that isn't over 30 and has the ability to catch the ball. Kendricks and Lewis it's time to say buh bye.

These players and coaches are now auditioning for next year. And many will be gone. At least I hope most of the coaching staff and all the Strength and Conditioning staff.

pacman's picture

The only thing that will make me happy today is if they fire MM this week. But I do not expect them to. If that is the case, the only thing that will make me happy at the end of the season is to fire Murphy too. Murphy wanted MM to report to him so it's on him. They deserve to go together.

There was no way we were going to get a pass rush this week without Daniels. You have to give a D coach something to work with and Pettine has done a pretty good job with what he was given. Too many injuries on Sunday.

Offense is another story. AR seems to have inherited Favre's ego. Throwing short passes into the dirt. Over/under throwing open receivers, etc. Same old. AR goes off the field and then just goes sulking on the bench. Maybe this is why Montgomery and Dix played and talked like they did. They were just picking up on the vibes in the locker room.

This season was on the offense and special teams. They changed D coach last year and something good came out of it. They brought in an old O coach, kept special teams and head coach and that's where the problems were.

I will probably still watch Packers next year out of loyalty, but if they keep MM, I will never forgive them!

Bert's picture

I dunno guys. We can blame MM and AR all day but in reality this team just isn't good enough. MM isn't great but the more I see of this team I don't think a different coach would get that much better results. AR isn't playing very well and his receivers (outside of Adams) are inexperienced or just kinda meh. Pettine gets about as much as you're gonna get out of the defense given the holes. Let's face it. A new HC won't fix all the problems but a roster upgrade is much needed.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

"coach Mike McCarthy said there were two plays for the failed fourth down. In hindsight, he says the other play would’ve been better call."

As another poster, Bmore, noted, sounds like AR had two plays he could have used depending on what kind of defense he saw.

So in hindsight, AR should have audibled to the other play. [We have no idea if the other play call had an even worse chance of working, the same or better.

tincada's picture

Let me see. This is real high rocket science crap.

Aaron Jones 17
Jamaal Williams 1
Equanimeous St. Brown 1

!9 carries for 82 yards, whoopie. Zeke E carried it 31 times in their dismemberment of the Skins. How many winning teams have less than 20 running calls per game?

As one guy said, someone is lying. Either MM doesn't want to run the ball more than 20 times a game or AR is changing up the call, which is it?

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