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Patriots 31 Packers 17: Game Balls & Lame Calls

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Patriots 31 Packers 17: Game Balls & Lame Calls

The Green Bay Packers hung with the New England Patriots for three quarters before injuries and mistakes caught up with them, leaving them still winless on the road.  The result was the image above, all through the second half.

Green Bay dropped to 3-4-1 on the season and fell further behind in the NFC North race.  

On to the night's best and worst.

Game Balls


Aaron Rodgers made some really great throws but also had some unspectacular moments. 

Marquez Valdes-Scantling had some nice catches but they didn't result in much.

Mike Daniels had an early sack but that's his first big play in a long time.

Aaron Jones ran well and then he fumbled.

This team lacks everything a team needs to win football games right now.  I simply can't reward that.

Lame Calls

Robert Tonyan

Rouging the kicker (should have been running into the kicker) after a big third down stop.  Dumb, dumb, dumb. 

Horrible awareness and gave the ball back to the Patriots.  Fortunately it didn't cost them points but these types of things continue to happen because the Packers aren't a well-disciplined team 

Mike McCarthy

This guy cannot coach this team to do anything special this season.  He's completely void of any magic or answers for the league's toughest challenges.  And so is his team right now.

I'll say what some seem unwilling to: Mike McCarthy is on life support as head coach of the Green Bay Packers.  In recent years past, there was always hope that the team could turn things around.  That just doesn't seem to be in the cards this season.

Until this game, the Packers have had Aaron Rodgers and very few injuries.  There are no excuses.  This team is not achieving anywhere near what they should be.  It's hard to point the blame anywhere else but the head coach at this point.


Bryan Bulaga and Kevin King went out before the first half ended and neither returned.  That was bad enough. 

Then Blake Martinez leaves with an ankle injury after stepping awkwardly on Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's foot.  He did return.

The relatively injury-free ride for the Packers ended in this game.  Hopefully it's not the beginning of what we've seen too many times before with this team and players who aren't available.

The Green Bay Packers

I'll always be a fan of this team, even when I have nothing positive to say about them.  But they are a complete mess right now.  The future is completely uncertain and I don't see the winds changing anytime soon.

Can they manage a win at home against the Miami Dolphins, who have no business beating the Packers on the road?


Jason is a freelance writer on staff since 2012 and also co-hosts Pulse of the Pack podcast.  You can follow him on Twitter here

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (132) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Duke Divine's picture

The 1st drive was great until Mashed Potato Mike surrendered to the field goal with a bubble screen to Cobb. There's no reason that ball shouldn't be at least sailing out of the back of the EZ! At least, but nope. .. Mike lays down in the fetal position and settles for a FG. The Pats staff coached circles around the tater crew last night offensively and on ST. Petine and the defense did all they could to keep it close...

jeremyjjbrown's picture

"bubble screen ti Cobb"

Damn that was a bad playcall.

Hawg Hanner's picture

The only coach earning his salt is Pettine. It is plain to see we need new faces at head coach and on special teams. McCarthy is just a burned out wreck at this point.

SwissCheeze's picture

How was that not intentional grounding on the Martinez ankle play. Brady was in the pocket and Martinez had a clear sack coming. Brady’s pass wasn’t even close to any WR. Martinez then pulls up instead of smashing Brady and kills his ankle.

EddieLeeIvory's picture

Now u know how New England leads the league in fewest penalties. They're well-coached yet, but refs give them the champion treatment, benefit of the doubt time after time.
This includes guesses on spots of where the ball should be placed.

I am on the #FireCorky bandwagon. No more McCarthy.
Gosh I wish we had Josh McDaniels orchestrating this offense.
MVS, Aaron Jones (that was his 1st ever fumble) and Davante are huge weapons.

Cobb, Perry have to go after this year. $$
Matthews needs a paycut.
Bulaga needs to be upgraded. He's old and broken down.

Could we trade brittle King & Biegel for Watt now?

jeremyjjbrown's picture

"This team lacks everything a team needs to win football games right now."

This team has almost everything it needs to win, as evidenced by the close game in LA and the close 3 quarters in Foxborro. What it lacks is discipline and professionalism.

Sure the roster can always be better, the game plan can always be better. But it's hard to win when you have a defense that can't line up to start the game, and offense that can't get a play call in under 45 seconds, stupid penalties and fumbles in the 4th quarter. It's just not professional at all and is not going to do against the Rams and Patriots.

jasonperone's picture

If you can look at the last 12 months this team has produced and say they have everything they need, cheers to you. I’m also then more concerned about the state of affairs and future of this team.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

I said almost everything, and pointed out some damning flaws. If they can get the play in on time, throw the ball to the open guy and stop making boneheaded turnovers and penalties so that it looks like a professional product on the field then it would make a huge difference.

jasonperone's picture

You're 1000% right, I just see their inability to do just that as their not having what it takes to win. Maybe I should have added "right now" but this team is a disaster right now. I have very low confidence that this year's team can turn it around like we've seen in the recent past

jeremyjjbrown's picture

Sadly I agree with that.

Coldworld's picture

The line between good and poor is often very fine. That is why teams get hot or cold. Was a team that was losing that embarks on a winning streak poorly coached?

I am not sure the talent is consistent enough over all positions (think OLB, safety) and I think we also suffer from lack of experience issues in others—we saw Brady exploit that for one of the 4th quarter touch downs.

Ultimately, unless a team is really clicking or simply better (which generally means years of high roster picks and good drafts) it is hard to win in the NFL, especially when you turn the ball over.

Personally I think this team is better overall talent wise than it was when TT stood back, but that the improvement needed was too widespread—not all the holes could be plugged in one season in a salary cap world where our QB is paid a vast amount.

Secondly, the draft crop, while promising, is still raw. Rookies take time to mature, as do players without a full season. Put that together and you have performances that show exactly the symptoms you cite and we watch.

It may also lead to more conservative calling and usage of players. A year ago, we were decrying the complexity of the Capers system. Now we are lamenting the lack of variety on offense. Maybe we just need to accept that we are in rebuild. Let’s hope Gute stays aggressive and that we can be truly competitive next year.

In the interim, there is still time, but I’d rather shoot for true contention for the next few years than delude ourselves into believing one good player at the right position could make the team world beaters and not taking tough choices. If the light does come on for enough this year so much the better for all concerned.

Spud Rapids's picture

A disaster? no... that would be the Raiders... Are they underperforming by a lot? Yes...

Can the authors on this site stop writing with so many bold generalizations? Jason you said: "This team lacks everything a team needs to win football games right now." Can you provide a little bit more nuance and objectivism? The comments section is bad enough

jasonperone's picture

I hear you, Spud, but that's exactly where I put the team right now. If we were beat writers, we might bring a bit more of what you're looking for, although I see plenty of blatant labeling and criticism of the team from them too. We're fans as well as authors and we all see things differently. My style is to say it like it is and I can only bring my own take to what I write.

McCarthy seems to have lost the ears and interest of this team. Rodgers is way off his game despite no knee brace. Missing as many throws as he makes. Mistakes all over the place, penalties. Trick plays befuddling this team two weeks in a row. Head scratching use of personnel. Now injuries. 2 big losses that could have gotten this team back on track. Barely beat the 9ers at home, same with Bears who haven't beaten anyone this season. Can't make a FG in Detroit. Not a single quality win that didn't require a highlight reel 4th quarter effort in the last 2 years. Underperforming doesn't cover it, to me. That's the best reasoning I can offer.

EdsLaces's picture

2018 Green Bay Packers ...hard to watch.

Stic's picture

MM is a genius and he will get a big extension soon.
(Sarcasm) but in all seriousness the talent on this team is lacking and highly overpaid. The assets expended on the D have been a flop. And left the team bereft of enough incoming offensive talent. Top 100 picks last four drafts 10 D 2 0 talk about lack of balance.

Minniman's picture

Yes, the yield on that D investment is quite underwhelming compared to the output of the O picks.

At least Gute is realizing this and shipping them out....... cold comfort, I know.

Guam's picture

Undisciplined special teams play and an unimaginative offense will keep this team out of the playoffs. I believe we have two roughing the kicker penalties this year when we should never have even one. Montgomery fumbles returning a kickoff that should have been downed. This is not just player issues, it is coaching. McCarthy needs to take a hard look at Zook.

And himself for an offense that looks nothing like the highly productive offenses of LA, New Orleans and New England. MM has the QB and enough other weapons that we should be more productive than this.

Packer Fan's picture

Special teams are not the only phase that is undisciplined. Defensive penalties also. They have subsided some (special teams had six penalties at Detroit) but they still happen. Offense has no rhythm and AR is missing reads. On the long throw to Cobb from the endzone, Valdez-Scantling was open underneath. AR threw over the top of him. The one three and out, three of the four receivers ran fly patterns and the one shorter route that came open was on the side of the field opposite where AR got flushed out due to pressure. No one to throw to. The play was doomed from the start. And yes, fire Zook. New England is a better team and it shows. Coaching is the biggest difference.

mnklitzke's picture

Sure hope that Murphy grows a set of balls and lets Gute fire McCarthy...

dobber's picture

The bottom line is that any hope for any kind of playoff run is essentially flatlined. They've called in the priest...the fat lady is warming up. They can really only lose one game from here on out and still expect to have a chance to be a post-season team. 10-5-1 would likely get them in and a Packers team that goes 7-1 (or 8-0) the rest of the way will likely be playing well enough that they should give any opponent pause, but I don't think any of us expect that to happen with road dates against Seattle (a wild card), Minnesota, and Chicago. Even this optimist is having a hard time finding silver linings.

RCPackerFan's picture

"The bottom line is that any hope for any kind of playoff run is essentially flatlined. "

Why? They are 3-4-1. They still control their own fate/destiny.
If anyone has noticed the Defense has been playing really well. They have kept the team in games.
If Rodgers can get it figured out, these games will be much different.

They come home to take on the Dolphins - winnable.

They go to Seattle who are not the Seahawks of the past. The hard part of this game will be playing Thursday night.

The Vikings are not a Superior team. Plus they will have a mini bye going into this game.

The whole talk before and during the bye week was they had to come out of the 5 game stretch 3-2. They can still do that. They played the toughest 2 games in a row. They have another pair of tough road games, but IMO, they should be easier to win.

The final games are:
home against the Cardinals.
home against the Falcons.
At Chicago
At Jets
Home against Detroit

All of those games are winnable.

I'm not giving up on the season. Until we are out of the playoffs, my goal each and every year is to make the playoffs. We have been down this road before. They get backed up to the wall, with only one thing to do. Fight!!

jlc1's picture

Your are what your record says you are and the Pack is a .500 team. I think Bills fans can find some reasons to find some wins on their schedule as well. But this Packer team is not going to win all of those, it is more likely going to win 4 or 5 of them. You are what your record says you are.

Stic's picture

The defense has not been playing really well.
21st in scoring defense 25.5
Last 3 games avg 30
Try again

RCPackerFan's picture

Are you watching the games?

They held the Patriots to 17 points until the 4th quarter. They at one point caused Brady to have the most in completions in a row of his career I believe they said.
They were shutting down the Patriots offense. They held them to two 3 and outs in a row after the lame roughing the punter penalty.

The Offense did almost nothing for a lot of the game.

fthisJack's picture

and then Bellicheck showed why he is >MM. he put Patterson at RB and gashed the Packers all the way down the field for a TD. where is MMs innovation? he has ZERO!

RCPackerFan's picture

Did you see Pettine make adjustments to that?
After that one drive with Patterson I think he had 10? yards.

Pettine has been a VERY good hire!

I agree that I wish the offense was more innovative or created more misdirection types of plays. But the truth is, there are players that are open. Rodgers simply has passed them off for deeper plays a lot!

dobber's picture

When changes come, I hope Pettine is kept.

Minniman's picture

I'm still wondering why when Bulaga goes down and Rodgers is getting pressured and flushed out of the pocket on numerous occasions that Marcedes Lewis still only gets 7 snaps all game.

Not that I think that the o-line was horrible, but Brady's pocket was preserved A LOT better than Rodgers'.

That has to have an effect over the course of the game.

Side-note - was it just me or did Rodgers throw the ball away more in this game than I've seen him in the past?

porupack's picture

You can't support your theory that the D is good, and consider parts of the game that you want to consider. You have to consider the full 60 minutes and OT. Period.

Minniman's picture

While I'm not on the "D is good" bandwagon here, but when was the last time that you saw a Packers defense do a goal line stand?

From the lay observer, most of the better plays coming out of the packers D this year (apart from some deft coaching schemes) are from players on rookie contracts.

I see that as both promising and fraught - as rookies are going to make rookie mistakes.

The mental lapses have cruelled the Packers season this year and unfortunately they have paid a huge price each and every time

Stic's picture

Of course I watch the games and then I also get snippets of 22 man video.
But more important I look at the score. Giving up an avg of 30 points over four games is abominal. Go right on thinking its not but be prepared for mediocrity from here to eternity.

Stic's picture

Oh so now a defense is only graded on three quarters?
Not to mention get a passing grade on for a nonexistent pass rush and inability to force turnovers.
You are prolific RC but mediocre.

stockholder's picture

I still think the packers end up at 10 - 5 -1 This team has fight in them yet.

RCPackerFan's picture

You mean 10-5-1?

dobber's picture

Maybe he means they're going to play so bad at some point that the league will punish them by retroactively converting the tie to a loss...

What I was saying above is that there's nothing here that tells us that this team has what it takes to go to Seattle, Minnesota, and Chicago and win on the road against good defenses. You're right, none of those offenses are juggernauts of the Saints/Rams/Pats variety, but they'll turn the game with the Packers into grinders that will hinge on making a minimal number of errors...the 2018 Packers haven't shown that they can avoid those kinds of costly errors.

I agree in that anything can happen. I'm one of those fans who watches games slipping away and am still trying to calculate how they'll score 2 TDs in the last 4 minutes to tie. I'm an optimist. I think it's optimistic for this team to get to 9-6-1: that's 6-2 over the last 8 games. That won't get them to the postseason.

I'm also formulating ways in my head for this team to 'run the table'. Maybe this kind of 'adversity' is what it will take for ARod to finally flip the switch and be ARod again. If you go back to 2016, there's a lot of this team that looks like that team that got bludgeoned by Tennessee and Washington, but then took it to Philly on the road and started to roll. Those kinds of rolls are unpredictable and hard to expect. I don't expect one here.

Minniman's picture

I'm with you.

If the Packers were run out of town in LA and NE like they have in years past in (some) big games then I say no-way they can run the table.

They do need some things to go their way - but that's football.

Step 1 - beat MIA at Lambeau and restore some confidence. Then 1 week at a time.

stockholder's picture


mrtundra's picture

Run the table!

fastmoving's picture

right rc, they were in booth games. if they came out with one win, the mood would be complete different. MIN and CHI are not better and will lose games too.
lot of season left. I saw a lot of stranger things happen and we are not so fare off like most of the guys feel here.
I dont say its a given we make the postseason, but we still have a good shoot. If AR starts clicking, we are easy (and just in the nick of time) a top 5 team.

RCPackerFan's picture

IMO, Rodgers is a few series away from taking over a game.

He just is missing on something. I don't know what it is.

dobber's picture

Frankly, the media needs to start getting after him more. Get his dander up and focus him a little bit. It seems that nothing else is working.

RCPackerFan's picture

I really don't know what it is.
When he plays within the offense he is much better. Meaning on a play that is a 3 step drop and fire, if he fires the offense is much better. When he hesitates and looks for options 2-3-4-5 it struggles. Some of it is scheme, that guys aren't open immediately. But there are a lot of times they are.

porupack's picture

Watch Brady's release time early in the game; very quick and high tempo. WRs are in the open spaces within 3 seconds. The Patriot's offense dictates the pace. Packer D has no chance to get to Brady.

Rodgers holds ball, and WRs can't get open causing throwaways. Too many WR screens, not enough other quick timed plays. No rhythm. Some plays come in chunks, but it requires Rodgers scrambling or evasiveness. Just no imposition on the Patriot's D.

Game strategy had some merits = Aaron Jones running. But lack of other offensive innovations.
Poor discipline = poor coach.
MM did know who he was up against, right? And still they weren't prepared for Patriots stunts? He had no stunts to dish back?

Pierre's picture

The defense was also ill prepared to stop or even to slow up the Patriots no-huddle drive right down the field for an easy TD to start off the game. It was pathetic to watch how poor the defense played at the start of the game. Like they just were in total shock at the pace of the Patriots offense. It’s a much anticipated Sunday night matchup and your team is not prepared to play MM?

ShanghaiKid's picture

@RC You are wrong. The Packers do not control their own destiny. They’re 2 games back in the division and WC race, they control nothing. They need to win out and also get help. This is also assuming they can win any of the road games. And they haven’t proven they can against any level of competition.

There is no sense of belief coming from the locker room to turn it around. Guys have been saying the same thing since the MN collapse in week 2. At this point in the season you are what your record says. And their record says they’re a bad team who can’t play on the road and can barely play at home. If I’m wrong I’ll come back and own it. But I believe the season ended in NE.

Minniman's picture

They have 3 division games remaining so do control a fair amount of their own destiny to shape the NFC North table.

ShanghaiKid's picture

If they were 1 GB, yes. 2 puts them in need of help. Even if they win both divisional road games it would still require a slip up from both teams to surpass them in the pecking order.

EddieLeeIvory's picture

The fat lady is baking fudge as we speak.....

RCPackerFan's picture

Game Balls -

MVS - He is becoming an unstoppable player. He is emerging as a Dangerous WR.

Defense - The defense kept them in this game.

Lame Calls -

Turning point in the game - 17-17 in the 3rd quarter. Moving the ball and Jones fumbles the ball giving away all the momentum that the team had.
Aaron Jones fumble changed the game.

Aaron Rodgers - There is something not right with Rodgers. He has been calling out coaches way to much. He needs to look himself in the mirror. He has been missing open WR's all year long. There was a 3rd down play that he has Adams who would have had a first down. He held the ball and ended up throwing it away deep to Cobb. Another play, he feels a little pressure so he escapes to the right. When all the WR's were on the left side of the field. He is the guy who is supposed to know everything. You're going to run away from all of your WR's?
We see Rodgers making fantastic throws to WR's that are covered. And then the next play he refuses to throw the ball. He made a beautiful throw to MVS on the one drive. He had like a 2' window to hit him and he hit it. Another one he threw it up to allow MVS to jump up over 2 guys and catch it.
Until Rodgers finds a rhythm and some consistency the offense will struggle no matter who the QB is.

Refs/injuries -
How do they eject Whitehead over a slap? Seriously WTF. And that "roughing the punter" was a BAD call. that could have been the turning point in the game.

Then to make matters worse they lose Brice, King, Martinez to injuries. Luckily Martinez came back, but I would assume Brice and King won't be back.

Game Notes -
There are good things and bad things to take from this game. The good they were 17-17 and moving the ball to score until Jones fumbles. He doesn't fumble who knows what happens in this game. Last week they were 27-26 against the Rams. Against 2 of the top teams they were close. The team is not far off, they just have to figure out how to get some more consistency in these games to get the Win.
Coming home should be a good start.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

"Aaron Jones fumble changed the game."

He wasn't even hit that hard. It was just a normal tackle. Makes me wonder if MM knows he's a fumbler and that's why he's been inexplicably on the sideline.

RCPackerFan's picture

I don't know. Jones hasn't had any ball security issues at all. I think that was his first fumble in 153? carries. I don't think he had a problem with fumbles in college either.

I think it was just a fluke thing.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

I hope it was just a fluke. The kid has talent.

stockholder's picture

Ahmad Green fumbled a lot until they worked it out. He must ! I remember a black sleeve going on.'s picture

I think he got hit on the elbow just as the other tackler came in.

Ferrari Driver's picture

IMO it was just a perfect defensive play: Jones had both arms on the ball and the defender had a perfect punch on the ball. I don't fault Jones on that one. There are plenty of backs who run with one arm around the ball or have it exposed. That was not the case with Jones. I view him as a well above average running back and close to a top 10.

Minniman's picture


I see 4 categories here - but yes, a fumble is a fumble.

1) The blatant "butter fingers" drops
2) The "you're asking for it" 1 handed carry that easily gets knocked out
3) The 2-armed but not quite secured carry that gets dislodged by solid contact
4) The 2-armed carry but an ambush helmet to ball or well executed punch out causes fumble

1 and 2 are on the carrier and they should be reprimanded.
3 is excusable..... once
4 is a good defensive play

EddieLeeIvory's picture

Right, why don't we ever force fumbles like they just did on Ty & Jones.

Did we force a turnover last night?
How bout last week?

Razer's picture

...Against 2 of the top teams they were close. The team is not far off, they just have to figure out how to get some more consistency in these games to get the Win...

I wish I had your optimism. Over the last decade I have watched teams compete against us and fall short. Teams like Detroit, Washington, Dallas and even the Vikings almost played good enough to win the game BUT, mistakes, flaws or team weaknesses always rear their heads and they faded. Rodgers was always good enough.

We are now one of those teams that can play for part of the game and get close BUT when the game tightens, mistakes and weaknesses take there toll. And, Rodgers and this offense are not good enough to outrun the better teams (other than a Turbisky led Bears team).

RCPackerFan's picture

I'm an eternal optimist.

You are correct. The difference is that Rodgers has played at a level that no one could top.
We have seen glimpses of that this year. The Bears game, the 49ers game. Maybe the Rams game if not for Montgomery.

We have seen Rodgers get hot and go. Problem is he hasn't done that for a full 4 quarters.

The problem right now is not play calling or the personnel. Its simply that Rodgers has been 'off'. Inconsistent.

For example, that one thrown to Adams in the end zone. If he puts it in the corner its a TD. Instead its to the sideline and gets deflected. Its the simple throws like that, that are the difference in Rodgers right now. That's the difference between scoring TD's and FG's. Another Rodgers instead of hitting Adams on a 3rd down play he throws it away to Cobb.

I think Rodgers will get it together. I think the offense will get it going. Just how soon is the question.

dobber's picture

How does the saying go: a pessimist is an optimist with more information.

LambeauPlain's picture

A pessimist is unhappy all the time.

An optimist is just disappointed once in a while.

Oppy's picture

For what it's worth, Rodgers didn't bash the coaching, play calls, or his team mates after last night's game.

He seemed.. humbled. Hopefully, a good thing for future games.

RCPackerFan's picture

He did make a comment about it though. When asked about St Brown not knowing where to be and they had to burn a timeout, he said no that should have been the coaching on the sideline making sure he knew where to be.

He did sound more humbled though. He admitted to making mistakes.

fastmoving's picture

actually,Im generally a bit more on the pessimistic side. so you can only win, most of the time.

But e mood here is way to bad. they good a better D, a better run game and more speed at WR. The roster is not bad and we got AR.

They play nowhere near the potential, but even then, we can run with the best teams. At least there is enough to be hopeful, especially if you see the records from CHI and MIN and how they play.

flackcatcher's picture

Nicely stated RC. We all see how close this team is. Most of problems can be fixed with experience and another good draft next year. The on going problem is Rodgers. He needs to play within the offense scheme. His free lancing has hurt this team in back to back games. When he plays within this offense it becomes extremely effective. How McCarthy gets though to Rodgers and his ego is beyond me. But it is important that Rodgers understands that sometimes 'less is more'.

RCPackerFan's picture

I hate to say it, but Rodgers right now reminds me of Favre at the end of Shermans era. Freelancing more. Not playing within the offense.
Not saying its the same thing, but reminds me of it.

I agree. I don't know how McCarthy can get through to Rodgers. Something has to change though.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I think Flak moved the goalposts. I am fairly pessimistic about the 2018 season, though I did spend time looking at MN's and Chicago's schedule to see if 9-6-1 could reasonably win the division (and then I had to look up the tiebreakers). 7-1 isn't impossible, and 6-2 isn't implausible, though difficult. I have to admit that I am a good deal more optimistic about making the playoffs than I am about beating any good teams in the playoffs, but even that is not implausible. I didn't think we'd beat Dallas to get to the conference championship 2 years ago.

Now I am very optimistic for the 2019 season. But I didn't think that was the frame of reference for this thread.

mrtundra's picture

Is Rodgers hurt? There was a shot of him shaking his hand pre huddle. We know his knee is bad but what may have happened to his hand?

WinUSA's picture

Good points but as far as King goes.... the guy is constantly injured. A fricken horrible draft pick. I don’t care if he is an “athletic specimen. The guy seems to have a hang nail every week.

JimR_in_SoCal's picture

Aaron Jones’ fumble definitely changed the course of the game. Aaron Rodgers’ two fumbles could have done so, as well. Rodgers was very, very lucky he fumbled out of bounds.

Tundraboy's picture

I'm with you RC but

"The team is not far off, they just have to figure out how to get some more consistency in these games to get the Win.
Coming home should be a good start."

Sounds like something MM would say. I want to believe but I don't buy it. Change has to come.Even if we somehow go on fire , I don't see them running the table or anything remotely consistent to that. Not this year. At least we finally all agree that Perry, CM, and Cobb are not worth keeping, nor is MM anymore. I'm not happy in any way but almost relieved because we have also discovered and added some new talent that I'm looking forward to watching. I do have faith in Gute.

Packer Dave's picture

As frustrating as it is to watch this team hang in there, only to see games slip away, we have realize this is not a super bowl team as it is. We might even be slipping to last in the division soon.

Lots of dead weight remaining from the TT years (Cobb, Perry, CM3, MM) needs to be removed and replaced. I think that will happen with Gute in charge. We'll have a solid slot for the draft and loads of free agent money. Realistically, Rodgers gets one more ring over his next contract.

stockholder's picture

Dead Weight = Cobb is done. Perry is hurt to much. (Done as a packer. ) CMIII is getting there. But I'll give him two years yet. MM has had to many replacements. Bulaga must go. This was a big game and He's gone again. The players you listed were Leaders! They no longer can LEAD! You bring in a new coach with this many replacements. Forget A-Rod! He's the biggest leader who is going to become dead weight! I predict A-Rod will get hurt and be done when you make that coaching change. MM /Gute can get this straighten out. How? Replace all the guys mentioned above with this draft. 2 pass rushers= /De/Edge -- 1 RT--- 1 new QB to replace A-Rod when he gets hurt. MM stays!

JimR_in_SoCal's picture

From what I’ve seen, CMIII is done.

stockholder's picture

Depends on the money. Perry is a No show. CMIII isn't. I see more CMIII than any other OLB. The other is Martinez.

Lare's picture

It appears as if McCarthy and his coaching staff have lost the team. The players just seem to be going through the motions, knowing that the plays and schemes aren't going to be successful regardless if they execute them correctly or not.

It's time for a change, and I think it has to start above the head coaching level.

Oppy's picture

Don't worry, MM will be out at the end of the season.

But there's zero on the field that shows he's "lost the team."

People have been saying that for over 16 games at this point. Still no sign of it.

dobber's picture

I agree: if MM had lost this team they would have gotten gobsmacked by 35 points these last two weeks. The defense is playing hard and flying around...probably playing better than it has all year. The offense is sputtering and not making enough plays, but not for lack of effort. They'll have to contend with injuries again, but hopefully a Brock-Osweiler-led Dolphins team at Lambeau will be the elixir they need.

Coldworld's picture

After 3 crummy TT drafts and no good free agents, what I see is the hangover one should have expected. The last minute tonic applied by Gute is just taking longer than we had hoped for to wipe away the pain

jlc1's picture

Yes these are the last 8 games of the McCarthy era. Even if it is the last 9 or 10 it is still over. The corrections he is always talking about just have not been happening in recent years and this year is even worse. It was a good run but when your team makes bone head plays every week or you just are not ready for a hurry up offense and get run right out of the stadium in a 3 minute opening drive then it is just too obvious that you don't bring the extra edge your team needs to win often enough.

fthisJack's picture

the self scouting and going through the offensive playbook was fake news. same old stupid plays at inappropriate times. they are driving the ball...Jones chewing up 5 yards at a crack.....until they reach the 3 yard line and then pass twice! what idiot does this? settle for another FG in the red zone....that is killing them!

Pierre's picture

Yes, they should have just kept running Jones right into the end zone on the next play!

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

To quote Denny Green, "they are who we thought they were". Because this is pretty much what I expected. I didn't expect MMs "taking a scrub brush to the playbook" to mean much of anything. It hasn't. I didn't expect Reggie Gilbert to fix the pass rush. He hasn't. I didn't expect Jimmy Graham to be a game changer. And while his stats are actually better than than I thought, he hasn't become some red zone force. Mike Pettine has gotten the defense to play better, but the lack of talent is still evident. This team still lives and dies by Arod, and this Arod isn't as good as the one that got this team to start 4-1 last year. And to expect him to be is insane. He's not Brady. Brady has been hurt once. He doesn't get hit. He goes down before getting creamed.

Aaron can still be a top 5 qb in this league, and look like his otherworldly self on a weekly basis. But the days of "run around and make something happen every play" are over. As they should be. And I'm not going to blame it on Aaron if he's tuned MM out. We've all had that one boss who was an absolute idiot.

bleedsgreen's picture

They had a penalty ON THE FIRST F****ing play, the kickoff! That was all it took to know that, no, in fact, nothing’s been “cleaned up."

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

But did you see his pad level on the offsides penalty to start the game?

Packatron's picture

Pad level FTW.

Rick F's picture

The packers are in serious trouble with that offense. Running the play clock down all the way is a joke. The reason I don’t buy it is this Rodgers, he has seen everything so let him have options to audible. Some of the plays called in he doesn’t change. That isn’t 12’s fault you watch those plays and he runs them and they get blown up. You must have a imagination and involve your playmakers. Where is a reverse with MVS or flea flicker. They are wasting time with the same crap as last year. Football is a game of adjustments and trying to stay steps ahead of the opponents adjustments. Capers scheme didn’t evolve and MM offense hasn’t either. Gute is a good GM he knows that he must retool this roster and find a coach that will get the best out of the players.

Tundraboy's picture

I think you nailed it.

Rick F's picture

The packers are in serious trouble with that offense. Running the play clock down all the way is a joke. The reason I don’t buy it is this Rodgers, he has seen everything so let him have options to audible. Some of the plays called in he doesn’t change. That isn’t 12’s fault you watch those plays and he runs them and they get blown up. You must have a imagination and involve your playmakers. Where is a reverse with MVS or flea flicker. They are wasting time with the same crap as last year. Football is a game of adjustments and trying to stay steps ahead of the opponents adjustments. Capers scheme didn’t evolve and MM offense hasn’t either. Gute is a good GM he knows that he must retool this roster and find a coach that will get the best out of the players.

Tundraboy's picture

Nailed it again.

GoPackGo99's picture

I'm not leading the Fire McCarthy charge, ok, yes I am! Dude has got to go.

What happened to the offense that used to be built on screens and slants? You know, the west coast offense that McCarthy used to run. It seems every route we run now is so predictable and 20 yards downfield. It almost hurts to see AR drop back, get chased, and pray he finds a WR working back to make a play.

Although our "D" isn't lockdown tight like some teams, given the lack of pass rush has ACTUALLY been semi-serviceable this season.

Loved you for awhile, but time to move on from:

Till our loss next week against Miami, peace.

Handsback's picture

I didn't like extending Rodgers a new contract before his current one in the last year. He needed to show he was 100% back. Well the Packers did, and reality...he has healed his shoulder and is back to normal. But Houston, we have a problem at QB.

The Packer's offense isn't MM's issue. This is the first game I've seen parts of live this year and here's what I saw, a QB that's pushing his offense to a point where it's not that effective. He continues to push the ball down the field and pass up easier ball control throws. Now you have a very expensive QB that really isn't any more effective than average.
I know it's not a popular stance, but Rodgers isn't playing that good right now. Add in that the guard play isn't that strong and Bulaga is out more than he's playing and you have a very average team. The defense is OK, not good enough to carry this team.

There's always a way back with FA and the draft, but it may take a couple of years. Use the Saints as a good example.

Community Guy's picture

"I know it's not a popular stance, but Rodgers isn't playing that good right now."

"Rodgers isn't playing that good right now" is right.

where are the Danica critics??

Pierre's picture

I agree. They should have waited to see how he performs this season before extending him at over 30mil per year. Not popular but stats don’t lie and neither does the eye test watching him play. Brady plays for half the amount annually and has been to 7-8 Super Bowls. His contract prevents the Packers from paying more elite players and will so for years. Can’t see this team improving unless Rodgers gets throwing and playing the QB position a lot better than he has been showing this season. He is highly over rated and at this point struggling to be an average NFL QB.

nostradanus's picture

Just like McCarthy took a scrub brush approach to his offense this year.
Gute needs to take a scrub brush approach in the off-season and jettison the entire coaching staff and cut the fat of all the underperforming players contracts. He will have a boatload of Space to work with and also a boat load up draft choices which would be very attractive to a young, innovative coaching candidate.
Yes Rodgers is going to be 35 in the off-season but it’s time to make major moves as this team is going nowhere and it will only get worse.
Fire McCarthy and his entire coaching staff!
Enjoy coaching in Cleveland Mike, so long!

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

No, unlike MM gute needs to actually make changes and improvements, not just lip service

Ferrari Driver's picture

Gute was not given the authority to fire the coaching staff. Murphy kept it for himself.

Pierre's picture

This team poor performance is a reflective of Rodgers’ play as the QB. He just can’t pick out a receiver and throw to him in stride real quick on a consistent basis. He still holds the ball too long and throws it away too often out of bounds for being considered an “elite QB”. That’s all just a past reputation now that fans still think of him. He could not even move the offense for TDs against a pedestrian Patriot’s Defense! That’s revealing and pathetic for the money they are shelling out to him. (+FOR FIVE MORE YEARS!!!)
He’s just not a great QB anymore by any measure but in the minds of ardent fans. He barely completes 50% of his passes anymore in games which is not gonna cut it in today’s NFL. Bree’s is completing passes at a 72% and they win scoring 35-45 points a week. Most will continue to say the same tired excuses of receivers, OLine, MM playcalling, and defense for the Packers not being able to win at a high level anymore without looking at Rodgers being the real reason. Someone noted Rodgers record is 38-41 on the road!! Did you know that. He’s becoming Eli Manning 2 before our eyes! Time to realize that others are not “wasting” a SB window of opportunity with Rodgers at QB in Green Bay but that he is just inaccurate passing from the pocket quickly and unable to play a FULL GAME at a STELLAR LEVEL as an NFL QB!
It’s called the eye test and you see it every week now from Rodgers as he leads this Packers offense with glimpses of brilliance but mediocrity overall in games. That’s why they never blowout any teams anymore and are not a bonifide SB contender, nor will they be with Rodgers as their QB. Not looking good for the Packers the next five years as they will just be middle tier NFL team...but that’s the real reason they will perform like they are no matter what else gets’s the play of their QB. Rodgers needs to improve his passing to a 65-70% completion level again if he still has it in him or this team will not be top tier at all. Is he able to play a full game at an elite level anymore...that remains to be seen.'s picture

I feel like the game began to turn on the roughing/running into the punter call. It flipped the field after a big stop. I grow tired of post game pressers in which MM says they have things to fix. The seasons half over,when do they fix them? Though Rodgers lack of regular practices, due to his knee, contribute to the timing issues I once again have to comment on the total lack of imaginative play calling and regression as the game wears on. I do believe the defense is playing hard for the new coach but are burdened with high contract players who aren't playing up to the contract or are on the field for limited time.

scullyitsme's picture

I haven’t really been on the fire McCarthy band wagon in recent years, but this team makes too many costly mistakes in crucial situations, that’s coaching. I also agree that Rodgers is making his own share of mistakes, but let’s face it, he ain’t going anywhere. Change the coaching, hope to stop making mistakes. Maybe a new respected coach can rein in Rodgers from becoming farve 2.0 in his later packer years.

Lphill's picture

if Rodgers wasn't constantly under pressure he would have time to find his open receivers, also I think its over for MM the Browns await him, how great would it be to get Josh McDaniel. I am sure he would love to build his own legacy with Rodgers while there is still time.

4thand1's picture

The ebb and and flow of a game always changes. NE also had times they didn't do much. MM depends on Rodgers to be perfect for 60 minutes, not gonna happen. The Jones fumble was the turning point, not gonna blame him, he played his ass off. He picked up a blitz on the long throw to MVS. He was covering up the ball with both arms when he fumbled, the guy made a perfect play to punch it out, NE always makes these plays. I don't see any path to the playoffs unless "they run the table". MM will always get outcoach by just about anyone, it's why he must be out by the seasons end.

zoellner25's picture

Man, I know this is hindsight but I wish they would've fired MM two years ago to get Kyle Shanahan. i'm serious.

blacke00's picture

I don'r usually comment on these blogs but I felt it was finally time. PLEASE! Stop with the hyperbole! IMHO the major issue on this team and it has been a for the past few years is the Offensive Line.

If you watched the game you will have noticed that Tom Brady had "all the time in the World". You wonder why he is the best? Watch how much time Rodgers had? Where's the effective blocking when needed the most?
And this is true pass or rush blocking. Effective blocking is the key. Blocking in "Critical situations" is the issue. The adage that the game is won or lost in the "trenches" is now truer than it has ever been.

You are not going to get to the promised land with free agents, has beens, low draft choices and OTH players!

The Packers need to get serious about putting together a grade A O line. You will see a much improved team both offensively and "Defensively".

Tundraboy's picture

And a real pass Rusher.

4thand1's picture

The 1st series the ball went threw JG's hands for a TD, just sayin. WE need so much help at key positions, o line, OLB, safety. Gute has to get rid of dead weight, hit in the draft, and pick up a couple of key FA's this offseason.

Coldworld's picture

One handed catch attempt holding off the defender. Maybe wrong target? Maybe no one else open. Certainly low percentage ...

Ferrari Driver's picture


I think you are a little hard on Aaron Rodgers. The Pats were running though our offensive line and look at the pressures Rodgers had compared to Brady. Put Rodgers on the Patriots' team and he would look like "God" playing behind center.

If we had an average NFL quarterback instead of the best to ever play professional football, this team would be fortunate to win 4 games.

jasonperone's picture

A lot of Rodgers breakdowns, feedback, etc here and on social media today. However you want to slice it, WITH him, this team is still not good right now. Whether it's still some of the knee issue, age catching up, disagreements with the head coach, and O-line issues, he's not playing anywhere near as effectively as he has in the past. He IS average right now. This team might be lucky to win 4 games anyway.

The O line wasn't bad and hasn't been bad. Spriggs came in for Bulaga and I didn't hear his name mentioned. Certainly could have been worse overall. They have the best LT in football and one of the best left sides in the game. I think we just need to credit NE for a good game plan to create pressure, something Rodgers doesn't exploit anymore like he did earlier in his career.

cheesehead1's picture

Very disappointed with this game. Like many other games this season we came out flat! No excuses, NE is by far the better team. While Pettines D is better this year, it’s not by much IMO. You don’t win very often giving up 31. They looked completely lost on the Pats trick plays. Did Nick Perry play, and where is the pre season phenom Gilbert! Finally, King hurt yet again. If he can’t stay on the field, time to cut ties unfortunately..

LambeauPlain's picture

This team is a few plays away from being 1-7.

The stellar OLB staff ruled the turf last night and amassed 4 assisted tackles and one from all FOUR!

What a bunch of slugs.

43 pass plays averaged 5.7 yards. 25 run plays averaged 4.7.

Why all the passing when it seems clear the O line is more proficient at run blocking than pass blocking?

Pierre's picture

It’s quite simple why the Packers pass so much when they are running at 4.7 yards a’s because Rodgers does not want the running game to receive the credit as the primary reason the offense is being successful. He wants and needs it to be primarily on his arm spearheading the offense.

Problem is, he is no longer playing the QB position at an elite level for a full game...not even close. He completes only about 55% of his passes and misses targets a lot more often deep and otherwise. Also chucks the ball aut of bounds a lot more too afraid to put it up for his receiver to make a play on a ball. You see it every week if your watching.

And, as for the O-Line being the difference in QBs just watch how quick Brady unloads the ball to hit receivers on their breaks and how long Rodgers holds the ball waiting to throw to someone who only gets wide open rather than just a step on the defender.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

I"m sick to my stomach. This team is better than this. I just know it.

We better take a look at getting Bruce Irvin.

Sean Peyton and the Saints Drew Brees are tearing it up down there!

Peyton became head coach same time as

zoellner25's picture

I don't think the Packers are better than this. We are 3-4-1. We will finish about .500

LambeauPlain's picture

The Packers are the mirror image of their coach, Marshmallow Mike.

Undisciplined and soft. Arrogant and under-performing.

43 pass plays averaged 5.7 yards per play.

25 run plays averaged 4.7 yards.

Good, tough, disciplined teams run the ball to set up big pass plays.

The Pack is not a good, tough, disciplined team.

This is MMs last year. He needs to go. And he can let Zook carry his suitcases for him.

Rick F's picture

Cobb Matthews Perry Bulaga are past their prime. That is ok but the NFL doesn’t care so you must change year to year and week to week . You must get players that can play well and fill specific needs in both free agency and draft. You look at Gute first draft big, long and fast body types . Every player has that profile look and great intangibles and filled a weakness. He is getting football players not project players. That difference is huge and will take a couple of years to overhaul a average roster. They have 6-10 guys that can make a impact. Just think of 3-4 players from the offseason that can contribute and build a more competitive roster. 10 picks in this draft - 50 plus million in cap space Gute is transitioning this team on the fly. Last step will be a new head coach. Close against the rams and pats this organization will not stand with this erosion.

dobber's picture

"Last step will be a new head coach."

Wouldn't you rather change the HC at the start of the retool and not mid-stream?

Rick F's picture

The change will be at the end of the year. No benefits to do it now. To get back to a championship level you have to make tough decisions. The packers have 12 so reload with a new voice and get another chance at a title or 2.

D Ernie's picture

My two cents. First I'm a Pat fan from way back but only as an AFC team. With that said, I thought going into the 1717 tie the Pack could and would win.
This is not a talented Pats team this year. The Pack were playing dam good defense too. and with three db's out.

The difference in this game, one big difference that cost the packers was Daniels ability to change up the offense, what they were doing wasnt working lets be inventive and try some new things, versus MM doing same old MM play calling over and over again.

His un inventiveness costs this team the game. They should have passed the crap out of the ball and gave the dam run up for one thing. Pats pass d sucks

WinUSA's picture

This team is better than its record. Seems it has been bit in the as by some poisonous snake. Regardless of the 11 opponents across the line the Packers foreheads have been trample by some of the worse penalties called by a host of run away zebras. And there seems to be no accountability for fucked up calls- NADA!!!!! Beside the calls against the Packers the home team darlings non calls were more than obvious. Beside the slap to the helmet by rookie Whitehead and his subsequent banishment from the field was notorious. He was gut punched by a lineman 50 lbs heavier but no call. The penalty on roughing the punter was a joke and a game changer. The holding call in the 4th quarter called on the Packers when Brady had 7 seconds to pass the ball ....was filled with handfuls if green and gold Jersey by the home team. All season long from the first game changing roughing the passer call on Mathews the Packers have been raped by the refs. Just once I would like to have the names of the refs published on Monday with video of their fucked up calls. I am not defending some of the bonehead plays by some of the Pack... but they have had at least to two game losses as the result of some of the worst reffing I have seen in 50 years!!!! There is NO doubt in this writers opinion that the Pack deserves better
equity from the officiating baboons!

billythekid69's picture

Serious question why not trade Mike McCarthy to the browns?

stockholder's picture

Serious question why not play Spriggs at LT and move Bahk.?

packergal's picture


If you are serious...I'm not trying to be snarky but YOU are the poster child that worships MM and defends his every action. (most every action).

Therefore, why do you think MM does or does not make appropriate substitutional changes/moves?

I maintain that he does not because he IS resistant to change.

And as you know, under difficult circumstances, refusing to change can cause organizations to regress. (this is what we are watching today).

When this leadership failure occurs, then...changes must be made by other leadership/executive management. Therefore, it's time to move on from MM--with an improved leadership team, improved culture, better, faster athletes and a willingness to try something else!

stockholder's picture

-Everyone is quick to judge. He rewrote the play book, Brought in some proven coaches. Went against Nelson's popularity. And stayed out of the business side. We all expected better. The higher the Top the longer the drop. What happened to Ripkowski after he fumbled against the falcons. Rookies make mistakes. others thrive in certain conditions. But how do you push people with popularity out. it's Gute's job. Were all sadden by the performance of shooting one in the foot. The team is changing from it's game ready players. Players like Breeland ,morrison, and others missed camp. Patching a crack is a fairy tale. MM story in Green Bay has not been written yet. Union people have one thing in mind. Blame management. MM is a winner and still wants to win. He took back the play calling. The biggest thing is, MM can't speak out against TT, Gute , anyone. He is management!! This team is like a puzzle. To find the right fit, one must wait for the picture to develop before they add more. But why aren't his coaches speaking up, or making the changes? Better, faster athletes don't grow on trees. And this team is not together. Their blaming MM. Like you.

idgafkurt's picture

3-4-1 is the most fitting record ever for this Real Estate company's football team.

Imagine having 27% of your cap tied up into the following players - Randall Cobb, Clay Matthews, Nick Perry, Bryan Bulaga & Jimmy Graham.

Imagine having a front 7 vs New England in Week 9 with players such as Kyle Fackrell, Tyler Lancaster, Montravius Adams, Dean Lowry and Antonio Morrison logging significant snaps. Or having Bryon Bell starting at OG and Jason Spriggs as your top OT backup.

This team is lacking in talent but yet complacent enough to let guys like Fackrell hold roster spots for years and do nothing to improve obvious areas of weakness like Safety, Oline depth or OLB.

They have a long ways to go and it needs to start by cleaning out the coaching staff and turning over half that roster.

4zone's picture

How it was is not how it is. I think the years of AR sitting out most of the pre-season should come to an end. It's also time for a cutting edge offensive HC to get this offense where it should be.

To have guessed that we would have only 3 wins at the half way mark of the season was on probably nobody's mind 9 weeks ago. This is definitely one of the most disappointing starts in remembrance.

stockholder's picture

Did you Know? A- Rod has a higher success throwing rolling out left than Right now.

Old School's picture

I have plenty of positive things to say about this team.

We have been our own worst enemy; teams are not beating us, we're beating ourselves.

I do not see a single team remaining on our schedule that we shouldn't be able to beat. It's mid-season now, and it's time to be at mid-season form. Titles are not won in September and October but at some point, you are what your record says you are.

I think the Packers will put together some wins in a row at some point yet. This condemnation of the team and McCarthy is waay premature, IMO.

LambeauPlain's picture

I don't see a team left on the schedule the Pack cannot beat.

Problem is they play to the level of their competition and make stupid mistakes at critical times.

MM is not commanding a well oiled, disciplined team. They are among the league leaders in penalties. ST penalties and O line holding lead the list of incompetence.

That is emblematic of coaching incompetence.

Rick F's picture

All the struggles this team has is at the feet of MM. He wanted more say into roster decisions and that is what he got. Problem is this team is not overly talented 6-10 players can really play. Cobb CM3 Perry bulaga have not lived up to their contracts and with a cap you are at the mercy of them until you can get rid of them. MM doesn’t adjust his game plans to the opponent. He is a pass happy coach and hasn’t had a 1000 yard rusher since Grant in 2008. We have a good group of rookies and a bunch of guys to go with 12 17 76 97 69. This struggle is real. It is just a objective look at the packers

croatpackfan's picture

You wanted Ha-Ha to be traded and Tramon "Ol' Gunter speed" Williams to play FS he never played and who is guilty for 2014 NFCCG last TD by the worst CB play I ever withnessed.

You got it!

Now, you want Mike McCarthy to go. OK, I suppose you'll get it...

But, as I said before:


Tundraboy's picture

So this is the scrubbed Playbook? This is what he's come up with and that's what he came up with against Belichick? And I don't want to hear any unscouted looks nonsense. Does McCarthy think he's going to actually meet up with New England in the playoffs.

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