The Crescent and Cheese

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Them’s Fightin’ Words

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Mike McCarthy finally did it. After taking blame for the playcalling, hinting at execution errors, and taking blame for the offense’s inconsistencies, McCarthy finally did it:
“I would say Aaron Rodgers’ season is probably much in line with the season we had as an offense. We’ve been a little bit up and down at times. If you just look at our point production, it’s reflected in that…I think (Rodgers) has had a good year, but it’s time for him and the offense to put their best foot forward when we go to Philadelphia.” Taken from this JS online article.

Written by AdmiralPrice

January 4, 2011 at 2:08 pm

Posted in Preview

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How the Packers Can Beat the New York Giants

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When I put up my first “How the Packers Can Win,” it was against the New England Patriots. Obviously, this game does not seem as hopeless as the one last week. The game this week is against opposite teams: the strength of one is the weakness of the other. The Packers have a great quarterback and wideouts but an average at best offensive line. The Giants, on the other hand, have an excellent front four and good linebacking crew but a very pedestrian defensive backfield. On the defensive side of the ball, the Packers are hurting on the defensive line and linebackers and are facing one of the top running teams of the league. The playmaking secondary will be lined up against boom or bust receivers and a quarterback who will throw the ball up if pressured (but can also make unbelievable throws). The game will hinge of two things: which one of the teams has a better game plan, and which one will come out with more emotion. Now, I’m really not feeling it right now, so I’ll just give a quick rundown of what the Pack needs to do to win:

The Raja of the Trenches

The Raja Establishes His Dominion

The Raja Establishes His Dominion

To contain the running game and to disrupt the passing game of the New York Giants, B.J. Raji needs to have a big game. Last week, he controlled the line of scrimmage and forced double teams on passing plays (which led to Bishop’s sack). He needs to continue that. If he forces double/triple teams on running plays, Bishop and Hawk need to attack the hole and not sit back, and that will will stop the running game like the Eagles did last week.

The Secondary Cannot Drop Interceptions

Letting the Game Slip Away

Letting the Game Slip Away

Woodson dropped a sure pick, and in two plays the Patriots were in the endzone. This week, Woodson and the secondary can’t afford to drop interceptions. The Giants can run long, grueling drives that eat the clock. Eli Manning will throw one or two up; he doesn’t seem to like getting hit very much. One or two picks will go a long way towards winning the game.

Minimize the Importance of the Trenches

Quick Throws

Short Routes, Quick Throws

This goes primarily for offense. The Packers have an average at best offensive line. Thus, they need to move the battle away from it. Some people are calling for a strong running game. It could happen, sure, but if it doesn’t get going, McCarthy needs to move away from it. Go four/five wides or a 3 wide single back set. Spread out their defensive backs, because they are bad. Quick throws will eat this team up, especially since the secondary is bad at tackling. Long developing routes are not going to work against this team. If you want to go deep, Rodgers will have to wait for a blitz and then check to a four verticles play–that play killed them twice against the Eagles and almost got them a third time. That brings us to another point: there are two ways to play this pass defense: short, quick routes that will minimize the defensive line (but watch out for on the line bat downs; they had five or six last week) or max protecting and letting killing by double moves. I hate the second option; it never works. The Packers just aren’t good at blocking, and the max protect always seems to fall apart. Go for it once or twice, sure, but not too often. Go deep with a simple go route when they blitz. Another thing to note: last week, the Giants blitz heavily across the middle of the field. This might have been because of Vick, but if they do it again, look for Rodgers to completely carve them apart. The middle of the field is where the Packers are best.

The Middle of the Line Must Play Strong

Strong Pocket

College, Sitton, Wells Anchoring the Line

Wells, Sitton, and College must have good games. The center of the line is very strong and have a mean bull rush. Tuck and Umenyiora/Pierre-Paul will beat their men–repeatedly. The center has to be strong against good, strong DTs and give Rodgers a place to step up and step out if he has to.

Take Advantage of Bad Special Teams Play

Go Tramon Go!

Tramon Might Take This the Distance Against the Giants

If Packer fans thought their team had bad special teams, they just have to look at the Giants. They have allowed multiple return for TDs this year, and they consistently give up strong run backs on both punts and kicks. Maybe this is the game Tramon/Sam take one back?

Get Up for the Game

Eyes on the Prize

It's all in the eyes

Last week, McCarthy did some great coaching work against to get these guys up for the game. You just saw it in his eyes and the players’: they wanted that game. He needs to do it again, and he needs to avoid an emotional let down at all costs.

That’s it for this week’s preview. Blame my addiction to Europa Universalis 3 for it’s craptastic quality 😉

Written by AdmiralPrice

December 25, 2010 at 9:57 pm

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The Curious Case of Mike McCarthy

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McCarthy’s record this season in games decided by seven points or less—not stellar. It’s not a record one can take to the championship. I don’t care anymore that this offense is as potent as any in the league. I don’t care anymore that McCarthy’s game plans devastate opposing defenses. 3-6. That’s all that matters. If the record is 4-4, or even 3-5, the Packers can still win the division. But it’s 3-6, and the question is why. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by AdmiralPrice

December 23, 2010 at 4:26 am

Posted in Analysis

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An Important Play Lost in the Chaos

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Amidst all the doom and gloom of the Packers’ loss to Atlanta, one of the key plays in the fourth quarter has kinda gotten lost. If the Packers convert here, they probably get at least a field goal, if not more, and their chances for winning greatly increases. Let’s break down the situation and see why exactly the play failed (i don’t have the coaches tape, obviously, so I’ll just be using the broadcast video). Read the rest of this entry »

Written by AdmiralPrice

December 2, 2010 at 7:35 pm