Packers vs. Seahawks: Quick Takes from Green Bay's 36-16 Loss

Quick takes from Green Bay's 36-16 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in Week 1. 

The Green Bay Packers (0-1) were no match for the defending Super Bowl champions in Thursday night's regular-season opener, falling by a 36-16 scoreline that was certainly reflective of the dominance displayed by the Seattle Seahawks (1-0) on both sides of the football at a raucous CenturyLink Field. 

It was over when…

…Linebacker Brad Jones was flagged for holding on 3rd-and-6 in the fourth quarter and the score 29-16. The Seahawks used the extra set of downs to run 10 more plays, melt another six minutes off the clock and score the dagger touchdown with 2:37 left. 

Game Balls 

  • Corey Linsley: The rookie wasn't overwhelmed in an impossible environment. He actually held his own. His one glaring mistake—a late snap that forced Aaron Rodgers to call timeout—didn't result in disaster. The concern level at center dropped considerably.
  • Clay Matthews: His thumb now healthy, Matthews looked like the lone difference-maker for the Packers defense. He wasn't perfect, but at least he had some disruptive moments (his one sack was negated thanks to another Jones penalty). Dom Capers needs him to be Superman against the better NFL offenses. 

Key Stats

The Packers gave up 207 rushing yards and a 5.6-yard per rush average. Marshawn Lynch contributed 110 yards and two scores on the ground. According to ESPN, 94 of Lynch's 110 yards came between the tackles…Rodgers attempted 33 passes and averaged just 5.7 yards per attempt, his eighth worst finish over 95 starts. His 81.5 passer rating was just the 16th time Rodgers has had a regular-season passer rating under 82.0…Eddie Lacy ran 12 times for just 34 yards, good for just 2.8 yards per carry. He had one first-quarter carry for 15 yards, while his other 11 went for just 19…Rodgers completed 23 passes to five receivers. All five were held under 10 yards per reception…Percy Harvin had 100 total yards (41 rushing, 59 receiving)…The Seahawks scored on six of 10 drives, but one ended at the half and another was a set of kneel downs to end the game. The Packers forced just two punts…The Seahawks had 25 first downs, including 13 rushing and four from penalties…Russell Wilson had a passer rating of 110.9. Both of his touchdowns came off play-action passes…The Packers had just one play over 20 yards, while the Seahawks had four…Rookie safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix had a fumble recovery, sack and a pass defensed. 

Other Notes

-- The Packers new defensive line was an unmitigated disaster. Seattle's never-ending bullying of Letroy Guion likely made Richie Incognito cringe. Mike Daniels said a lot of things this offseason, but the Seahawks controlled that conversation. B.J. Raji might turn out to be a much bigger loss than many predicted. The Packers ranked 25th against the run last season. Hard to expect much improvement.

-- As great as Aaron Rodgers is, he can't beat Seattle alone. When the Seahawks started stopping the run, it was mostly game over for the offense. Too many 3rd-and-long situations. And Rodgers had to dink-and-dunk all night because that's what the Seahawks force you to do, play-after-play-after-play. Coverage behind a four-man rush with athletic linebackers and the best secondary in football. Seattle made it look too easy. What ever the Packers were trying to hide in the Hutson Center this summer came up empty.

-- Brad Jones can't start for a championship defense. You might not see a 3-4 inside linebacker (or any linebacker, for that matter) play a worse game all season. 

-- Split feelings on Derek Sherrod. On one hand, you expect a first-round pick to handle his business better than Sherrod did, especially during his nightmare second half. But this is also a guy playing his first regular-season snaps since snapping his leg in two pieces in 2011 (for those lacking a calendar, it's now 2014), and it came in the deafening environment in Seattle against Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett and those Seahawks ends. The final result was predictable, no?

-- The turning point in this game came when the Packers defense made stops early in the second half and the offense couldn't stop shooting its own foot. The window opened. But Rodgers couldn't take advantage. His interception gave the Seahawks three points and the safety set in motion Seattle's dagger stretch. 

-- Make as many mistakes as the Packers did tonight—dropped interception, special teams penalty, hard bite on Wilson's first touchdown, Rodgers' pick, rushed fourth down play, Jones' holding call, missed tackles, etc.—and you can't play with the Seahawks. Maybe the Packers will re-watch this tape and feel like the problems are correctable. But this looked like a team that didn't have an answer—on offense or defense—for the best team in the conference. This wasn't an Atlanta-in-2010 kind of loss. The Packers dropped to 0-6 against the Seahawks and 49ers since 2012. Have to beat the best to be the best. Packers are still a second-tier team in the NFC.  

-- Green Bay has 10 days to lick its wounds before the New York Jets come to Lambeau Field for the only home game of the month. The Packers could certainly use a bounce-back win resembling last season's Week 2 result, which saw Green Bay wallop Washington, 38-20. 

 

Zach Kruse contributes to Cheesehead TV. He is also the Lead Writer for the NFC North at Bleacher Report. You can reach him on Twitter @zachkruse2 or by email at [email protected].

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Comments (33)

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Jordan's picture

September 05, 2014 at 01:51 am

Well stated. The Packers are definitely second tier.

I think the Packers QB needs to start playing like a first tier QB against good teams. Padding stats against bottom feeding defenses doesn't leave me impressed considering his current salary.

But he does have excellent insurance commercials!

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murphy's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:46 am

Rodgers looked human, no doubt about it. Not running for the first down, being off on some of his throws, just looking flustered in general. He has to play better, but he also needs help from his line, WRs, running game, play-caller, defense, and special teams.

Stat-padder, though? Now you be trolling.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

September 05, 2014 at 09:41 am

NFL Tier 1:
Seahawks
NFL Tier 2:
Everyone Else

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HankScorpio's picture

September 05, 2014 at 12:27 pm

"Padding stats against bottom feeding defenses doesn't leave me impressed considering his current salary. "

Unless it happens to be Russell Wilson or Colin Kaepernick padding their stats against the bottom feeding Packer defense. In that case, stat padding = outplaying Rodgers.

Care to explain why you hold "stat padding" in a different light depending on uniform color?

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jmac34's picture

September 05, 2014 at 01:54 am

The entire middle of this defense needs to go. Jones and Hawk are an embarrassment to the ILB position. It is incredibly hard not to be highly discouraged by tonight's performance.

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Spiderpack's picture

September 05, 2014 at 02:02 am

Slice the middle 1/3 of the defensive field. Cut every player in that space. Chop them off and make Ted suffer or come up with something worthwhile.

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LASVEGAS-TOM's picture

September 05, 2014 at 12:18 pm

Thank You!! I've been saying the same thing., & getting hammered for it. I would have traded or cut Hawk for Nothing, to keep JJ. I would have put him in Hawks place. He couldn't do any worse. At least he'd still be on the team. IMO Hawk owes GB Millions of $$$. Until GB gets strong up the middle, we won't go anywhere. LVT

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Spiderpack's picture

September 05, 2014 at 02:00 am

I hope this changes but, like you said:

We cant stop the run, especially up the middle.

We can't run the ball up the middle on a Super Bowl quality team.

Can't stop the run, can't reliably run between the tackles. There is little hope.

God help the Packers.

Sincerely,

Spiderpack

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Chad Lundberg's picture

September 05, 2014 at 02:20 am

Am I the ONLY one who thought losing B.J. Raji was a significant loss??? If he had a season like last year then I can understand the frustration, but the reports coming from camp were that he was being productive again! Our offense has always produced (except for this one time), its the defense that needs all the help it can get! And on top of that TT moved Thornton to IR practically as quickly as he could!

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FITZCORE1252's picture

September 05, 2014 at 03:05 am

Christ, why even play the next 15?

Quick question. Has anybody ever seen Zach and Cow in a room at the same time?

It was a decisive loss, to the pumped up champs and their fans, at the toughest venue in the league.

To determine a reigning 3 time division champ "2nd tier" after one poor game in such an environment seems a bit premature to me.

The Rainy City Bitch Pigeons were considerably better tonight. Things happen over the course of a season. Some teams improve, some teams regress, some stand pat. I look for this team to improve as the season continues. And I still think they can play with anyone, IF they play to their potential.

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Chad Lundberg's picture

September 05, 2014 at 03:41 am

Thank God, someone who isn't doom n gloom. I learned the hard way that you never count out a team. I said we wouldn't win the Super Bowl after we lost to Detroit and New England. I gave up, and I told everyone else to just give up. Never had I been SO GLAD I was wrong!!!

The SeaCocks pulled quite a few moves tonight, many that we simply weren't prepared for. They were also in mid-season form.

We were the complete opposite. We were rusty, undisciplined, and simply caught off guard. We weren't prepared for Lynch or Harvin, and Bulaga's absence was a definite turning point. Had this been a week 8 game we might have been seeing this completely differently.

Remember how we were man-handled by the Niners the same week last year? Gee, it was a heck of a lot closer the last time we played. We were one dropped pick away from taking that one.

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JimTaylor31's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:06 am

I would say if "we weren't prepared for Lynch or Harvin" then we ARE in big trouble. Who the hell DID they prepare for? Shawn Alexander and Steve Largent??

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Bearmeat's picture

September 05, 2014 at 09:11 am

Chad - we weren't manhandled by the 9ers in week 1 last year. That was a close game. It was the playoffs in 2012 and this game that was the man-handling.

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FITZCORE1252's picture

September 05, 2014 at 11:59 am

Well, they did throw at will on us week one last year. Made Boldin look like CJ.

But that's kind of what came to mind when i read 2nd tier. We very easily could've beat the niners last January. There's alot of hype around the saints, but til proven otherwise, that's all it is.

Besides the Hawks, who else resides on the first tier in the conference? Niners may miss the playoffs imo.

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thebeast431's picture

September 05, 2014 at 06:18 am

I blame sloppy play (bad tackling, penalties, over-pursuing) to the new CBA. Lack of padded practices and 2 a-days. Players just aren't as sharp as they need to be.

With our team always being very young, these 2 a-days are very important for their growing.

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JimTaylor31's picture

September 05, 2014 at 06:23 am

Losing Raji will bite us all year I'm afraid especially with the 2 goofs we have at ILB. That will be a huge weakness unless changes are made. Hopefully Barrington and/or Lattimore can help but my guess is if they were that much better they may be playing. The offense hopefully just had a bad night but if Bulaga is out for an extended period that will get ugly also. Hard to be optimistic when they continue to flop against the upper tier competition. That just didn't look good at all across the board. Crap!

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The GrEEn kNiGhT's picture

September 05, 2014 at 06:54 am

I am getting sick of these injuries. I know it happens to everyone but it happens to us every effin season year after year. Losing bulaga destroyed our run game which made us one dimensional and played right into Seattles hands. Lacy' s concussion didn't help either. We came out swinging with lacy running and if bulaga and lacy didn't go down it would have been much closer. We All knew losing Raji would hurt us against the run. Our worst fears have come true. And of course the middle of the D is a mess. I am still pissed we couldn't get Mosley or Shazier to fall to us this year. They would make way more difference than Haha. It's time for TT to hit Free Agency. Drafting isn't working. We are 0-6 against 2 of the best teams in nfl since 2012. Seattle and 49ers. That isn't a coincidence or luck. Those teams have been active in Free Agency. And it is definitely time for a new defensive coordinator. I wish we could have landed Rob Ryan when Dallas let him go. He would have turned this team around in a hurry. Here's hoping Rex Ryan gets fired and we land him next year! Go Pack Go!

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The GrEEn kNiGhT's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:11 am

All this talk about how we have the best dbs out there. How come they are always out of position? Nobodies like Baldwin and Lockette are roaming free. Hell Zach Miller looks like Gronk out there. This team can't tackle infants. It's so pathetic year after year. Poor fundamentals year after year. I am glad we got 1 ring before the NFC west powerhouses came to be. I am never going to talk about Rodgers being the best QB in the league or we are going to the SB until I see concrete evidence. Greatest QB doesn't go 0-6 against 2 of the best teams in the nfl.

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Nerd's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:23 am

You're right, these problems ARE correctable. Unfortunately, they haven't been corrected for about a decade now.

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JimTaylor31's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:35 am

Thanks for the good laugh!! I'm not so sure that either slow or dumb are correctable though.

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Nick Perry's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:50 am

The Packers let Seattle totally dictate what they could do on offense. They totally stayed away from one half of the field never going towards Sherman. I get it he's good, really good, but to completely stay away and never throw that way? Pretty hard to win playing with only half the field. Rodgers normally throws to the right side of the field, matter of fact 31% of the time he throws deep to that side. Not once did they try. Before the game Rodgers was interviewed by Andrea Kramer and he said "We would play our game". That didn't happen, not even close. With both Cobb and Nelson lining up against anyone NOT named Sherman, they still couldn't pass the ball.

They still can't stop the run. I haven't even looked at the final stat line but when Lynch was averaging 8 yards a carry into the 3rd quarter? The Packers defensive line was getting blown off the line all night long.

It's one game of 16 and there's no where to go but up. The Packers would be wise to bring in a proven tackle like Eric Winston if he's still unsigned after being cut in the final cut downs last week. Sherrod has problems with speed rushers and isn't much of a run blocker. Bulaga may or may not be alright. But it's crazy to count on a man that's been out for the last 1 1/2 years to make it through the year without anyone behind him.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:57 am

'Before the game Rodgers was interviewed by Andrea Kramer and he said "We would play our game". That didn't happen, not even close. '

You nailed it. They did not play their game. It was like they were scared to play. Only using 1/2 the field really limits your play. Why not at least take a few looks his way.
Packers looked very out of sync most of the night.

Honestly, though, the Packers will be fine as the season goes on. Whatever reason it takes the Packers offense a few weeks to get going. So i'm not overly concerned for the season.

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JimTaylor31's picture

September 05, 2014 at 08:20 am

I'm not overly concerned for the season as I think we will still win the NFC North. But let's be honest. We probably are about the #3 or #4 team in the NFC behind SF, NO, SEA (duh) and possibly Philly. The NFC is very tough and getting through 2-3 of those teams to a SB will be a stretch. Things can happen between now and January but right now we just aren't in the class of those teams. The good news is that we are still a pretty good team and will create lots of excitement between now and January.

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Nick Perry's picture

September 05, 2014 at 02:37 pm

The OL needs help. Sherrod struggled some in the preseason against anyone with speed and also run blocking. I agree that they'll be better as the season progresses but until they can stop the run this team will continue to lose to teams like the Seahawks. Mike Daniels said he was going to punch back, I guess I missed it.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

September 05, 2014 at 08:46 am

I agree with everything you typed here. One hundred percent.

I don't know about Winston,but we definitely need help at RT if Bulaga is out (again!)

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 05, 2014 at 07:53 am

I said before the game, that if the Packers were going to win the game they were going to have to run the ball and stop the run. They did neither and they paid for it.

Offensively I would have like to have seen something different on offense. Lacy wasn't working so why not give Harris a shot. A change of pace. Or hell put Cobb in the backfield for a play. I think the speed change could have benefited the run game.

I like the Packers offense. But where is the creativity? Why not try and pressure the defense in different ways? Look how Seattle used Harvin. Can't they do something similar with Cobb? McCarthy needs to start getting more creative with his formations and play calling.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

September 05, 2014 at 08:49 am

That 2nd paragraph. That's my ONLY problem with MM. Either get creative and install new plays/looks or learn how to adapt. It was times during the game where it looked like the same ol,same ol from previous seasons.

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Packatron's picture

September 05, 2014 at 12:57 pm

I'd agree, except that it's kinda hard to get creative against one of the greatest defenses of the Super Bowl era. I mean, most are comparing Seattle's D to the '85 Bears. I don't know many teams that "got creative" against Ditka/Ryan's old squad.

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Bearmeat's picture

September 05, 2014 at 09:13 am

"The Packers new DL was an unmitigated disaster."

THIS. THIS RIGHT HERE.

That is concerning. Alarming. Frustrating.

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Packer_Pete's picture

September 05, 2014 at 10:15 am

Yes, but what did you expect? BJ Raji, no matter what people think about him, was the cog in the middle. Without him, they will get pushed around like a JV team playing all pros. Guion has neither the strength nor the awareness to play on an NFL defense. Mike Daniels is a loudmouth who has some quick moves to get into the backfield, but he does not hold up well against the run. I am not sure Datone Jones even played, even though they mentioned his name. Josh Boyd showed up for 2 plays or so. That's simply not good enough. But there is no cure in sight. Pennel may've looked good in pre-season, but going up against first teamers, he won't do much either.

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Tundraboy's picture

September 05, 2014 at 12:34 pm

First consolation thought this morning was.well at least we got that out of the way, and still have a whole season left. Not as bad as the bad taste losing in the playoffs, and then having to wait a year?"

But it just feels pointless. Barring, trades for a real NT, OL help and an immediate overhaul of the ILB.

Great article Loved the ""Brad Jones can't start for a championship defense. You might not see a 3-4 inside linebacker (or any linebacker, for that matter) play a worse game all season".

Maybe now they will get it. Middle is a joke And to top it all off, combine that with Hawks sub mediocrity, and no matter how long the d hangs in there at some point you get this!

All I want to see now is Lattimore,Pennel,and Elliot playing. and for McCarthy to open up the whole dam playbook!!!

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DrealynWilliams's picture

September 05, 2014 at 02:33 pm

I want Lattimore or Barrington starting over Brad Jones. Just giving them a few more snaps won't be good enough.

Pennel can take all of Guion snaps for all I care.

I wouldn't play Elliot just yet. Clay/Peppers and Perry showed up against the Seahawks. If he can steal a few snaps from anyone it would be Neal. only because Neal can never seem to "finish".

"...McCarthy to open up the whole dam playbook!!!"

Yesssssss!!!! Please!!!!

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Tundraboy's picture

September 05, 2014 at 12:38 pm

And cant anyone else start instead of Burnett? What the hell.

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