Packers See Success And Run The Other Way

Packers fans flocked to Lambeau Field last Sunday to watch the heavily favored home team dismantle the Indianapolis Colts with their newly acquired quick-hit passing attack that moved the ball with consistency in consecutive weeks against the Chicago Bears and Atlanta Falcons.

Instead, the green and gold faithful watched head coach Mike McCarthy revert to a game plan focused on his receivers winning individual battles and beating man coverage.

“Obviously, there’s a lot that goes into game-planning,” McCarthy said. “How you react to how the defense is playing you. We expected a lot of man-to-man and to challenge our perimeter and they did. So you call plays and that’s how it works out.”

With the election coverage being intense, I’ve see people constantly communicating that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Every time I saw this over the past week my mind when directly to the Green Bay Packers offense during the Colts.

For two straight weeks, the quick hitting pass game was successful and put opposing defenses on their heels. They ran four and five wide sets and used short passes to move the chains and score points. Receivers Ty Montgomery and Davante Adams lined up in the backfield and were fed short passes early and often to pick up yards.

The Packers game plan against the Colts embodied McCarthy’s stale and sluggish approach that had fans clawing their eyes out since week 6 of last season with an enhanced focus on the barely thrown to, incredibly unathletic Richard Rodgers. The tight end had a season high six catches for 64 yards on ten targets, but was hardly a difference maker that should be force-fed the ball. It’s unclear if this was focus or coincidence, but passes were thrown to Richard Rodgers multiple times downfield when there were other receivers with more separation from their coverage.

Early against the Colts, Ty Montgomery was extremely effective in the running game gaining 47 yards on four carries. His opportunities both in the pass and run game were very limited as he ended up with only 3 receptions (38 yards, all in the second half) and 53 yards on the ground. After missing the previous week, the Packers had Montgomery on a snap count. The unusual part was that Montgomery himself didn’t seem aware of this information, which was unsettling.

This confusion seemed to spill over to receiver Randall Cobb’s status as well with his quarterback not understanding his status.

“I talked to him before the game,” Rodgers said, “and he gave me a thumbs up after his workout that he was going to be up, which we were kind of 50-50 whether or not he was going to play. Then he wasn’t out for a while. I wasn’t sure what was going on there, but it was good to get him in there in the end.”

It was evident from the first snap that quarterback Aaron Rodgers was hell-bent on connecting a deep throw down field against the highly vulnerable Colts’ secondary. While he failed to connect on a deep throw to an open Jordy Nelson and Jeff Janis dropped another, there were still several low percentage throws that were unnecessary. The Packers continue to take shots deep when they have an underneath pass that will move the sticks and keep a drive from stalling.

It’s imperative to throw the deep ball at times to keep a defense honest, but this offense needs to take what the defense gives them and stay on the field.

While several miscues occurred in the Colts contest, they need a simplified and focused style moving forward. If they want to have a successful second half to the 2016 season, they will need an offensive approach mimicking the games against Chicago and Atlanta. 

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Comments (17)

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Tarynfor12's picture

November 10, 2016 at 01:23 pm

"....they will need an offensive approach mimicking the games against Chicago and Atlanta."

Mimicking any aspect of what we have witnessed the last 18 games is as valuable as youth of today watching Rich Little impersonations of those long gone.
Unless it's something like from 2011, forget mimicking, how about some pure offensive ass kicking. : )

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al bundy's picture

November 10, 2016 at 01:37 pm

I beleive I read somewhere that someone with Montgomerys sickle syndrone is taking in oxygen. Like he is playing in denver all the time? If so, he cant go for long without rest, cant play two roles like running back and then receiver, cant stay on the field long.
If this is true, the Mike has to come up with a new plan and maybe Rogers over the middle was that plan? Who knows with McCarthy.
All I know is Rogers has not established himself as a threat so the coverage is on others more then him.
I think he is the worst TE in football and maybe Cook is second if he ever plays again.
No the problem with this team is and always has been pass defense. Its non existant

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rdent's picture

November 10, 2016 at 03:09 pm

I agree the pass D has let them down on too many occasions, even in the OT loss to Arizona Fitzgerald was so open my buds and I were left speechless.

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Handsback's picture

November 10, 2016 at 01:51 pm

The article stated it better than I could.

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Bearmeat's picture

November 10, 2016 at 02:01 pm

This article knocks it out of the park. What's MM's addy? Someone local should print/highlight and drop it off in his mailbox!

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

November 10, 2016 at 02:22 pm

"Instead, the green and gold faithful watched head coach Mike McCarthy revert to a game plan focused on his receivers winning individual battles and beating man coverage."

If they just try it again it might start working. Just one more time? Please can they just keep trying? This isn't about winning, this is about being right god damn it. McCarthy needs to prove this is gonna work no matter how long it takes. It's called persistence!

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Dean Guldswog's picture

November 10, 2016 at 05:58 pm

I would have hoped when it's second down two or three they would try to run Ripkowski. He runs with a ton of heart. Instead. we throw the ball incomplete or get sacked for a loss. We can't open up our pass game until we establish at least a little threat of a run . Time to break out the play book! First and ten shouldn't always have to turn into third an long.

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Chad Lundberg's picture

November 10, 2016 at 07:24 pm

Make Packers great again.

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4zone's picture

November 10, 2016 at 07:27 pm

One question Tyler; If Rodgers caught 6 passes for 64 yards, that comes to over 10 yards per catch. What in the world is wrong with that? It averages a first down per catch. How bout throw it to him 60 times instead of 6 ????

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Chad Lundberg's picture

November 10, 2016 at 08:42 pm

10 per catch is actually kinda low, but it also means he catches a 25 yarder and every other one is a crapper. Also he drops the ball too often, fails to get open, is one of the slowest players in the NFL, and worst of all incredibly inconsistent.

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Since '61's picture

November 10, 2016 at 11:33 pm

We've been down this road and had this discussion already this season. Simplify the offense, slow down, and huddle up. Go with the short quick passing game, move the chains and get some rhythm going. Get a score or two on the board and then go to no huddle drive or use the no huddle for part of a drive. Stop playing for penalties and looking for flags. They were fine in the Bear and Falcons game and then in the Colts game they returned to the plan that hasn't worked all season, until too late in the 4th quarter. Given the way our defense is playing we need our offense to take control of the game. We can't do that with erratic long passes. Even if we hit on one and score our defense will give it back anyway. Better to move the chains and keep the offense on the field and run off as much clock as possible. We also need to utilize all of our players, including Rip, T. Davis and G. Allison. Rip can get some tough yards and block for Monty or Rodgers. Davis and Allison can contribute if utilized properly. MM needs to run the offense that can work not the offense that he wants to work. Thanks, Since '61

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Curry Rambeau's picture

November 11, 2016 at 02:23 pm

"We've been down this road and had this discussion already this season. Simplify the offense, slow down, and huddle up. Go with the short quick passing game, move the chains and get some rhythm going. Get a score or two on the board and then go to no huddle drive or use the no huddle for part of a drive. Stop playing for penalties and looking for flags. They were fine in the Bear and Falcons game and then in the Colts game they returned to the plan that hasn't worked all season, until too late in the 4th quarter. Given the way our defense is playing we need our offense to take control of the game. We can't do that with erratic long passes. Even if we hit on one and score our defense will give it back anyway. Better to move the chains and keep the offense on the field and run off as much clock as possible. We also need to utilize all of our players, including Rip, T. Davis and G. Allison. Rip can get some tough yards and block for Monty or Rodgers. Davis and Allison can contribute if utilized properly. MM needs to run the offense that can work not the offense that he wants to work. Thanks, Since '61"

Excellent! But since we've been down this road and had this discussion over and over again, why did you discuss it one more time?

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Nick Perry's picture

November 11, 2016 at 05:36 am

What I haven't saw a lot of this week is those staunch TT and especially McCarthy supporters trying to defend the comments made the entire week about our two (cough, cough) leaders.

I guess that's what happens when you get whipped by Indy and there's questions if you can beat the Titans. They did pretty much get whipped, 2 TD drives in the 4th quarter against a prevent doesn't erase what they did for 3 plus quarters. The easiest schedule in the NFL has turned into being pretty tough for the Packers. Obviously teams like Dallas and Atlanta improved with injured players healthy this year, but this IS the Green Bay Packers. Do you REALLY need more than the last 18 games to see their a 500 team at best under McCarthy? Well actually worse than that at 8-10.

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Curry Rambeau's picture

November 11, 2016 at 02:35 pm

"What I haven't 'saw' "? They only lost by 6 points and had a chance to beat the Colts. Besides Green Bay has to be excused for the rest of the season because injuries can't be overcome by wishing them away and having mediocre talent off the bench.

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Point Packer's picture

November 11, 2016 at 05:44 pm

How did the Patriots do the first four games without Brady? All teams have injuries. Either MM is a shit coach (yes) or TT is a shit GM (yes). This team will miss the playoffs. Hopefully it means one or both will be fired.

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Nick Perry's picture

November 12, 2016 at 05:24 am

Curry, you're absolutely right, except they lost by 5 points. The final score it looks like they were in it, but they were behind at halftime by 14 after giving up a 96 yard TD drive at the end of the half. By the end of the 3rd quarter they were down by 18... to the Colts at home. Even with the injuries in the secondary the Packers were "Supposed" to have had their way with the worst O-Line in Football. I expected at least 5 sacks or more with or without Matthews but they were never close to that.

The Packers scored 13 garbage time points to make it look closer than it was. As Packers fans we know all about those games. The Packers USED to build a huge lead and the Defense would give up 28 points in the 2nd half to make it look close.

GB is 8-10 the last 18 games, 8-10! Now you can blame injuries which every team has but injuries isn't the problem, at least not most of it. Most of the issues fall on MM with TT coming a close 2nd. I actually go back and forth on who's more to blame, Mike for his predictable offense, or Ted refusing to give McCarthy what he needs for years at a time.

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jimtalkbox's picture

November 13, 2016 at 12:25 am

I was at the game and nearly lost it when Rodgers tried 3 deep shots in a row. Insanity.

I can't remember seeing a team with this good of an o-line and quality receivers struggle this way. It boggles my mind.

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