This was a game that was eagerly anticipated in Wisconsin and the homes of Green Bay Packer fans worldwide, not only were they finally going back to Century Link field to face the Seahawks for the first time since the "Fail Mary" game, but they were opening up the season on the road looking to start their 2014 campaign off on the right foot. The sad truth though, is that the Green Bay Packers might still be outside of the elite NFC teams, which could mean another early playoff bounce for the Green Bay Packers, if the team is in fact fortunate enough to return to the playoffs in 2014. Usually, yours truly is an optimist to the core when it comes to the Packers, but it is important to call a spade a spade, and the Packers simply didn't look good in this game.
Injuries are always bad, and the Packers saw several people come out of the game because of injuries, mostly on the offensive side of the ball. An early play of the game had starting tight end Richard Rodgers as an H-back on the right side behind Bryan Bulaga. The Seahawks defensive end pushed Bulaga back so quickly that his head hit Rodgers head and they both went down and didn't play another snap. Eddie Lacy had a big hit from Kam Chancellor in the fourth quarter on a big run as well, and it is listed that he did definitely have a concussion.
Drops are a horrible issue for an NFL team. The only player to catch every ball thrown his way for the Packers was running back Eddie Lacy. Jordy Nelson had a horrible issue with drops. He couldn't hang onto the ball at all. He only caught 9 of his 14 targets, with the biggest mistake being that he let a ball go right through his hands for an interception. Jordy has to handle more passes thrown his way since he is a bigger part of the offense this year since James Jones left to become an Oakland Raider.
The Packers had a few plays go as good as they could have for the team. First, early in the first quarter, the Packers punted to Earl Thomas and he didn't call for a fair catch. Richard Sherman blocked Davon House directly into Thomas as he was about to catch the ball and then it popped right up into the air to new Packers safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. This play would spark the offense to score on John Kuhn's misdirection run later in the first quarter.
Somehow, Randall Cobb was being covered by Billy Wagner 50 yards down field in the second quarter. Rodgers threw it up to him and Wagner had a blatantly obvious pass interference call. This led to the Mason Crosby field goal that would tie the game at 10. The Packers never really made it close again from there though.
After it was too late, Aaron Rodgers finally got the ball back in his hands and the Packers drove down the field ending with a Randall Cobb touchdown reception, but the two point play was no good.
Where to begin. So many options. First, the Packers played completely horrendous in the third quarter, but it's difficult to blame the defense for that entirely, since they only allowed 12 points between the third and early fourth quarter. First, Aaron Rodgers throws it threw Jordy's hands and Byron Maxwell picks it off and gets it close to the end zone, the Packers force a field goal attempt and are down 10 points.
Then the Packers drove it to around midfield and were in no man's land when McCarthy decided to go for it on 4th and 5, which ended with Derek Sherrod getting beat by Cliff Avril for a sack. Sherrod was completely abysmal in filling in for Bryan Bulaga, who is reportedly only has a knee strain at this point. On the next Packer offensive play, after they had forced a punt, Sherrod was then beaten by Michael Bennett, who strip sacked Rodgers and Sherrod pounced on the ball in the end zone for a safety. The Seahawks would turn this into a 9 point play by having Marshawn Lynch score a touchdown on the next offensive possession, which would put the Packers down 19.
The defense. Where to even begin with this defense? The defensive line was literally manhandled every time the Seahawks wanted to run the ball. The Seahawks averaged 5.6 yards per carry against the Packers. To put this in perspective, Adrian Peterson ran for 6 yards per carry for the season in 2012 when he almost set the single season rushing yards record. Without B.J. Raji, the Packers don't have anyone good enough to hold down the fort in the middle of the defense, and the inside linebackers A.J. Hawk and Brad Jones simply are not good enough behind them.
DeJuan Harris does not know when to take a knee in the end zone. Despite being 5-7 yards deep on the first two kickoffs, Harris decided to take it out and each time never even made it to the 15 yard line. He is a third string running back and hopefully Jeff Janis will be back there in his place soon enough.
It's really tough to keep the defense fresh when the offense only holds the ball for 3:50 second of the third quarter. Two one play possessions putting the Packers defense back on the field, getting them worn out simply doesn't work.
Forget about praying for Corey Linsley, everybody start praying for Bryan Bulaga's knee. Derek Sherrod is about as useful as a matador at the right tackle position, which is exactly what every Packer fan was afraid of at once when the original swing tackle, Don Barclay, tore his ACL in training camp.
Aaron Rodgers is still good, but is the rest of the offense actually at an elite level? The receivers didn't really seem to get open. Nobody was able to get open deep against the defense. Also, the Packers never threw it at Richard Sherman, which really isn't a surprise since they put Jarrett Boykin on that side for the entire game. As if Boykin vs. Sherman is at all a fair matchup.
The Packers have to catch the ball, both on offense and defense. The defense is listed because two Packers dropped one early interception, when Sam Shields cut off a Wilson pass that he could have taken back for a touchdown, and then Brad Jones caught the ball in the air, but didn't pull it in to safety as it was knocked out when he landed. An another play, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix had an opportunity for an interception, but the ball went right through his hands. It looked like the receiver tried to make a play on the ball, but Clinton-Dix had already dropped it anyway. Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb need to start playing catch because neither of them could hang onto Rodgers Rockets in this game. It was simply tragic watching catch after catch slip through their fingers.
The Packers next game is at home against the New York Jets. If the Packers start 0-2 with a loss to the Jets, put the entire state of Wisconsin on a very likely meltdown alert, because the Jets should not be at the same level as the Packers.