Packers fans are learning that that, perhaps, Aaron Rodgers is underpaid. Shuffling through the charred remains of GB’s most recent 27-13 loss, this time to the Giants in the Meadowlands, Chris and Dave ruminate on the far-reaching impact of the injured Packers QB and ponder whether the season is riding on this Sunday’s game against the Vikings.

 

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  • Brad

    Almost from the start of the year everyone has been commenting on how this year resembled 2010. This is the other side of the coin. A year with this kind of injury typically ends with a whimper rather than a super bowl. Maybe this year will cut down on the ‘next man up’ bravado.
    Yes Aaron is that good but with Barclay out the line looks a lot like last year running the ball. And with no Cobb or Findley and what seems to be a less than 100% Jones I don’t think he can survive that.
    Win or lose I still enjoy the Podcast even if just to listen to Dave’s wild mood swings.

    • Chris

      Glad you enjoy the show, Brad. Thanks for listening. We appreciate it.

      I agree that 2010 was a fluke in terms of how they overcame all those injuries. As has been pointed out elsewhere, the injuries of 2010 didn’t effect as many key parts of the team as those they’ve suffered this year. In 2010 they were without Rodgers for 1.5 games (both of which they lost) but their next most significant injury on offense was J-Mike. They were able to easily compensate for that because of their depth at WR (Jennings, Driver, Jones, Nelson) all of which were available.

      Their biggest losses on defense where Nick Barnett and Morgan Burnett (who was just a rookie then, so that wasn’t all that big). They still had Nick Collins, Woodson had a terrific year, Raji had a great season, and I don’t recall Matthews missing too much time. They also got good play from Howard Green and Erik Walden, both of whom I believe were picked up off the street during the season. In short, they had a lot of injuries, but the key players were relatively available.

      That is not the case this year, when the injuries have touched critical areas of the team. The hill is steeper and higher this year, and that’s why I am not sure I would bother playing Rodgers or Cobb anymore in ’13 if they have no chance of making the post-season. If they were playing badly but healthy, sure, you put them out there to try to win as many games as possible. But when there is a risk of further injury, the kind that could screw up next year, then I think the wise course is to use the remainder of this year to try to develop the guys you have to improve the depth so they will be better able to compensate when injuries strike in ’14. They may also learn that certain players aren’t that good and need to be replaced in the off-season.

      So there is still much to gain even without Rodgers and Cobb. I just don’t want to see them make a bad season worse by exposing those guys to injury when there is nothing meaningful on the line.

  • Bill Engleman

    ***Pop Culture News***
    Guys, I have no packers commentary as you guys cover that better than I ever could. I saw a news story that “The Killing” will be picked up for a closing season by Netflix with 6 episodes. I never watched it but thought of you guys when I saw the story.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/18/arts/television/fresh-life-via-netflix-for-the-killing.html?_r=0

    P.S. What is the official Chris and Dave email? Is this it? I don’t use Twitter…but maybe should just to follow you guys. I’ve listened to you guys religiously for 5 years and have never contacted you…whats wrong with me?? :)

    Thanks Guys!
    Bill

  • Rusty Weise

    Gentlemen,
    Thank you for once again for helping us to relive the depression of the latest Packers loss. And thanks as well for giving us the opportunity to spout our own bits on nonsense relative to the sad state of affairs.
    As the two of you discussed the Packers’ play-calling, I found myself agreeing whole-heartedly with Dave’s disappointment in Mike McCarthy’s unwise dedication to running on early downs. Chris, I believe, disagreed that calling running plays on 1st and 2nd downs negatively affected offensive productivity. This puzzled me. I was sure that Dave was right and couldn’t understand why Chris didn’t feel the same.
    So, of course, I took it upon myself to look up the play-by-play and analyze the data. It didn’t take a lot of research, certainly more than most sane people would do, but probably appropriate for a typical listener of Packers Therapy.
    We know how the 1st quarter went, two 3-and-outs, featuring the hated run, run, pass, punt. The 2nd quarter offensive possession brought a change. The first 3 plays were all passes, gaining 70 yards, followed by 1st and 2nd down runs of 0 and 1 yards, a pass for 7, and a field goal. Notice the drive bogged down immediately by the run, run, pass (RRP for short). The next drive started with a 1st down run for 1 yard, then a surprise 2nd down pass for 26 yards! But, alas, McCarthy then called run for 1, run for 2, pass and punt. The half ended with two Tolzien passing plays, gaining 24 yards and a field goal.
    To the 2nd half; run, run, pass actually succeeded in their first set of downs due to a 3rd down 29 yard completion, but Tolzien was intercepted 2 plays later. Next, they got 2 first downs passing, but punted after an RRP. Next was the touchdown drive with only one 1st down run and no 2nd down runs. Tolzien threw an INT, a one play possession. Then, a run, pass, pass, punt. The Packers then gained 38 yards passing, 11 on 2 QB scrambles and another INT. It ended with pass, pass, spike, run, game over.
    To summarize; the dreaded RRP sequence led to 4 kicks, but only one first down. Of the 5 punts, 3 of them followed RRP. The 2nd down runs in the 5 RRP’s totaled 5 yards. It looks dismal for RRP, doesn’t it? I believe this confirms the belief Dave and I share about the futility of the Packers running on 1st and 2nd down. I hope that Chris can bring himself to consider the wisdom our now statistically verified assessment.
    I will grant that there could be a strategic reason for this play-calling. 1st and 2nd down pass plays could certainly benefit from a defense stacking the line of scrimmage, selling out to defend the run. The average of Tolzien’s 2nd down completions was 11.8 yards and two of his 1st down completions went for 45 yards and 52 yards. And Tolzien’s interceptions never happened on 3rd down.
    So what have we learned? I’m not sure, other than I’m greatly frustrated and depressed whenever the Packers run on 1st and 2nd down. And you’ve probably learned that I may be an obsessive individual, probably to be avoided. Thank you anyway, at least for reading the full length of my thesis-like project. I have to admit I enjoyed it a little. For sure, more than the actual game, itself. Perhaps that’s the secret to surviving a painful string of Packers losses; study and analyze it to death. You could even turn that into a podcast. Hmmmm.
    Yours, studiously,
    Rusty Weise

  • Chris

    Your loyalty, Rusty, is greatly appreciated. Dave and I are delighted that we are part of your weekly routine and that, best of all, you take the time to be in touch with us.

    On the substance of your post, I don’t think I minimized the RRP sequence in the first quarter–it didn’t work and I don’t think I argued that it did. But my point was that RRP wasn’t their MO for the entire game (although it might have seemed that way). They largely got away from that after it was clear it wasn’t working in the first quarter. My evidence for that was the fact that they ran 48 plays after the first quarter and only 13 of those (about 25%) were running plays. So there were few RRP sequences after the six plays in the first quarter, and your analysis bears that out: they ran consecutively on first and second down only twice the rest of the game.

    I think it is fair to say the initial game plan, as evidenced by the lack of success in the first quarter, missed the mark. But MM adjusted and got away from that after those first two series.

  • Mike Mackowski

    What can you say about a tie? It sure beats a loss, and we are still less than a game out of the division lead. People want McCarthy’s head but I think he is doing as well as can be expected with all the injuries. Still with a beat up offensive line and so may people playing hurt on defense, even with Rodgers back in December, how far can the Packers go in the playoffs with this line up? How many guys can we expect to be healthy in the first weekend in January?

    And I’d still ask you guys to do some homework and compare the starting line ups today vs Sept 8.

    Have a great Thanksgiving and Go Pack Go!

    Mike Mackowski
    Gilbert, AZ