The Green Bay Packers laid an egg Sunday at a most untimely point in the season which seriously dents their hopes for play-off possibilities this year. In a very disappointing performance the Packers came up on the short side of a 7 – 3 disaster to the Detroit Lions.
It is hard to comprehend much less explain why the Packer offense could not generate a single touchdown against a team that previously had lost 19 straight games in inter-Divisional competition. But the Lions’ defense absolutely dominated the Packers’ offense in this game and it was very obvious that the problems started at the line of scrimmage. The Packers’ offensive line was simply terrible as they generated zero push for the running game and little time for the Packer quarterbacks to get an aerial assault established.
The plural use of quarterbacks results from Aaron Rodgers suffering a concussion shortly before half time. He did not return. Chad Clifton had a horrible day; Daren Colledge was hurt early and replaced by Jason Spitz, whose play was so inept that he was replaced by T.J Lang. The tight ends and chip blocking by the backs were equally ineffective and the disaster was on. It is hard to explain how such an offensive implosion could happen at a time when the team should be peaking for a play-off run.
When the 2010 season is over, Ted Thompson will have to evaluate personnel and coaching to determine exactly who is to be held accountable for such a breakdown. So inept was the offense that they played a quarter and a half before establishing a single first down. It was late in the third quarter until the offense managed a single third down conversion. Three pathetic turnovers by the “skilled” offensive players testify that the offensive line’s ineptness was not the only part of the Packer offense that contributed to this meltdown. It was truly awful. The Packer running backs collected a grand total of 33 yards on 17 carries. The running back by committee program is not working. The Lions also sacked Packer quarterbacks four times. Someone should be fired over this debacle.
Dom Caper’s defensive unit played well. The Lions’ incompetent quarterback contributed. C.J. Wilson and Desmond Bishop turned in nice performances and anytime the defense holds the opponents to seven points, the Packers should win easily. That didn’t happen on Sunday and Cheeseheads have every right to be disappointed.
In other divisional news, the Division-leading Chicago Bears were annihilated by the New England Patriots and the Humpty Dump collapsed in Minneapolis, literally, from all the snow. How ironic is that? Had the Packers been able to score a single touchdown against the Lions, they would be in the drivers seat for playoff advancement. Instead, their blown opportunity causes me to question what they will be able to accomplish against the red-hot Patriots next week, especially if Rodgers is unable to go.
Sunday was a very bad day for the Cheese nation. Only a truly died-in-the-wool Cheesehead could forecast a win in New England next week. I could be writing about draft picks in next week’s column unless there is a Divine intervention.