Legendary senior writer & Packers lead blogger highlights Packers vs Rams great, good, bad & ugly players.
Photo credit: US Presswire.
GREAT [A for effort]:
MVP QB Aaron Rodgers (342 yards, 3 touchdowns & 132.2 passer rating).
Special Teams (in the 1st quarter, another successful gutsy onside kick controlling momentum with a field goal. Kicker Mason Crosby hit it well and special teams player Jamari Lattimore got it).
Wide receivers Nelson, Jones & Cobb (combined 22 times for 264 yards and 3 scores). WR Cobb caught 2 touchdown passes. QB Rodgers barely missed WR Jones on two potential touchdown throws. Rodgers to WR Nelson are connecting again for big plays. WR Cobb emerging as a strong offensive weapon in the backfield or slot positions.
Outside linebackers Walden, Moses, and Matthews (3 sacks). Walden had 9 tackles,sack, and 2 hits. Matthew had 1 sack but he mostly got doubled or tripled teamed. The pass rush was marginal against a very bad offensive line.
Rookie CB Hayward (with good OLBs pressure on Rams QB Bradford, rookie starter intercepted a bad pass for his 4th interception).
Offensive line (first quarter allowing 3 sacks with LT Newhouse and LG Lang struggling against DE and DT; they settled down afterwards, but LG Lang had an awful game).
Running game (RB Green falling down in an open hole and getting 20 carries for only 35 yards averaging 1.8 ypc).
Running defense (allowing 78 yards in the first half with the defensive ends invisible and inside linebackers failing to fill gaps). BM of Jsonline rated the linebackers pretty accurately:
Making his first start inside, Brad Jones played all 60 snaps and wasn't bad [and not great]. He recognized plays, took calculated chances on his fills and generally exercised good low-block shield. Dom Capers sent him 14 times as an extra rusher; while Jones didn't do any damage, Capers knows he has the capability to get small between blockers and no doubt envisions him augmenting the rush. [ILB] A.J. Hawk (37 snaps) remained in his base and nickel role. When Hawk waited instead of attacking Givens on a 14-yard reverse, he ended up missing the tackle. He also missed Daryl Richardson on an 11-yard toss and left the middle vacant on Jackson's TD. The best player was Erik Walden, not Clay Matthew....
NFL Referees (who called an unnecessary roughness penalty on rookie OLB Moses).
DC Capers (passive zone coverage in the 4th quarter).
INJURIES: Irreplaceable veteran Charles Woodson is out for six weeks with a broken collarbone. We saw this coming with an aging veteran cornerback playing safety. It's an old story in the NFL. Now, rookie safety McMillian and M. D. Jennings will get more playing in subpackages. CB Hayward will probably start in base defense. CB House looked okay in first game back from shoulder injury.
TWITTER QUOTE: "Woodson injury is not as bad as one he suffered in Super Bowl XLV, but it is to the same shoulder and he will need six weeks to recover."