Monday, November 9, 2009

Terrible Game

The Journal's Greg Bedard tweeted after the game that:

I'm not joking: Packers could have won that game if they didn't throw one pass.

I think there's some truth to that. The Bucs needed a lot of help to beat the Packers, and the Packers obliged. Keep the ball on the ground a bit more against the 30th ranked rushing defense, and you probably cut down on some of the Bucs opportunities.

That said, it's getting pretty hard to argue that the Packers are even a mediocre team. The offensive line continues to be terrible (although the Tauscher/Barbre differential was made very clear in this game. Once Tauscher left everything went to shit). Aaron Rodgers continues to be the only QB in recent memory who elicits cries of "Throw the ball!" from the stands. The pass rush is spotty at best, and requires extra rushers to really be effective. Ryan Grant had success, but in general he's terrible.

And special teams. I don't think I've ever seen a punt blocked as much as that punt was blocked. And every returner suddenly becomes Devin Hester (the old un-ruined version) against the Packer special teams. Tampa never had to travel very far to score.

The Packers are going to have a hard time making the playoffs. This was the easy half of their schedule and they could only muster 4-4. They have 2 consecutive games at home, and then go on the road for 4 of their last 6. They don't exactly play a murderer's row down the stretch, but there are no more Rams or Browns. (Well, there are the Lions, but that's it. And they're not even pushovers anymore.)

That game was infuriating. They should have won, but did not because they're stupid.


tracker said...

Green looked excellent. I don't think you can give him the ball 20 times a game, but he looks faster and stronger than Grant.

And nothing wrong with the o-line's run blocking, even with Barbre in there. I think the problem is more Grant than them if the run game's bottled up. He just doesn't run through many tackles.

Yeah, they don't pass-block well, and it's not all technical. The time their left-end beat Donald Lee for a sack, Barbre was helping the RG double a tackle. Why leave Lee alone? Dumb.

That said, I'm in the camp growing disenchanted with Rodgers' inability to throw the ball away.

E.S.K. said...

Yesterday was one of his worst "throw the ball away" performances. He had plenty of time in most instances. I think he just didn't respect the Bucs and thought if he waited long enough something would open up.

My questions for ALL of this season...where are the short, west coast routes?

Sign LJ?

PaulNoonan said...

I'm not in favor of signing Larry Johnson, but think there is a strong possibility that we do so. I remember a year ago (or so, maybe longer) a lot of talk about trading for LJ. Now that he's out there, they might jump.

He is washed up.

tracker said...

LJ doesn't fix anything.

E.S.K. said...

Maybe he can return kicks!

I was in favor of the trade the year before I don't see that he makes sense.

Eric said...

Who's to blame

tracker said...

I'll put the bulk of the blame on McCarthy and the coaching staff for poor game-planning. And speaking of coaches, do we now have enough excuses to fire James Campen, especially after he bitch-made the organization last year in the Favre drama?

Eric said...

How does McCarthy go from 13-3 to this?

E.S.K. said...

I think this game was obviously playcalling at fault. The past two years they've lamented the fact that they can't run. Now, when given the perfect opportunity to run the ball 50 times...they choose not to.

DannyNoonan said...

I blame McCarthy. When they were 13-3 they had no running game and embraced it for the first half of the season. They did short west-coast passes the entire time. And it worked! But they still thought they needed a back. When Grant came, they changed their game plan to one that involves a running back and longer passes and abandoned the West Coast. They've been worse since.

Anonymous said...