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The response is all that matters now

4 min read
The response is all that matters now

OK, so the 2019 Packers are not going to be 16-0. Next!

The ultimate reality check.

Noah from St. Francis, WI

Can we all agree, at least that slant pick wasn’t for the Lombardi?

It was a gut-punch of a way to end the first month of the regular season, but now that the Packers finally had a game where they gave themselves numerous scoring chances, they can specify what needs the most work – red zone and goal-to-go.

This was a team loss balanced well across all three phases.

So we kind of know what a catch is, now we have to figure out what pass interference is. I was at the game I have no idea what the refs were looking at!

As I noted in my postgame editorial, it was as though the “clear and obvious” standard changed to something like “blatant” or “flagrant” in this game. Because MVS was interfered with by a defender who never looked back for the ball. So was Jeffery by King, with his arm clearly getting hit early. At least the no-calls were consistent I guess. The Packers obviously benefited from the call in the Vikings game that took away a Minnesota TD. Last night the balance tipped the other way. It’s how this is going to go all season long, I’m afraid. Clear as mud.

So that was a very disappointing and potentially damaging loss. For sure there were some good things for the Packers during the game but ultimately we had no run game, no run defense and too many mistakes. But what I want to focus on is four passing plays at the 1-yard line. I mean, seriously, not one play trying to run the ball? Not one handoff to a running back or a fullback? I get that run plays were not productive through the night but on the goal line at least keep the defense honest.

LaFleur’s tone after the game suggested he regretted not running it at least once, but Rodgers did have a run-pass option on third down and didn’t feel Jones would get in so he pulled the ball. Graham had two legit chances to make a catch. The Eagles played the play-action boot on second down perfectly. I try not to get worked up about calls. Every call, whatever it is, is designed to work. Make something work.

Vince Lombardi said, “We didn’t lose we just ran out of time.” I felt that sentiment in this game.

Not me. The Packers had plenty of chances and plenty of time. Plenty.

No question, just a comment: I’m having a hard time justifying continuing to support the NFL with my money when I’m watching young men carted off the field with vicious hits to the head. At least in college football it feels like they’re making an effort to get those plays out of the game with in game ejections. Allowing Derek Barnett to stay in the game after his hit on Jamaal Williams tells me the NFL isn’t serious about the problem.

How many times have I said in this space, in my live chats, on “Unscripted,” and everywhere else that the NFL’s refusal to make safety rules reviewable via replay continually casts doubt on how serious the league is about wanting the safety rules to be correctly applied, which therefore brings into question the commitment to safety in general? My face just keeps getting bluer.

So much for player safety. No less than five helmet-to-helmet hits in this game, only two penalties and two players carted off the field. Have the new rules failed?

Joe from Parkland County, Alberta

Aside from a few plays the offense would like to have back they performed well. On TV the defense looked tired and struggled to get home. Is this just a product of short-week football, or is it something that could rear its head when the game is on the line? P.S. – Thoughts and prayers to both Williams and Maddox and hope for a speedy recovery.

I mentioned in the live in-game blog that I’m not about to draw any grand conclusions in September, and especially not on a Thursday in September. I don’t think the Packers’ defense is suddenly a sieve, nor do I think the offense is now a well-oiled machine. These games on short weeks, especially early in the season, are anomalies more often than not. Next month will tell us more about this team than this past month did.

Just seemed like one of those games where everything that could go wrong, went wrong. Williams hurt on first play, our run defense/pass rush goes dormant, Adams gets hurt at the end, Bulaga goes down, not to mention all the stupid mistakes and untimely drops. Honestly, I’m impressed they kept this game so close despite the adversity. Plus the offense looked pretty sharp for once. We were bound to lose eventually, and I’m confident this team will respond the right way.

The Packers didn’t lose to a slouch. Wentz might be the best QB aside from Mahomes they’ll face all season. He’s a superb player, and he was in total command with the Eagles running the ball the way they were. You just hate to lose at home when it was there for the taking, but the response is all that matters now.

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