Gregor’s Packer Analysis
Week 14 Recap
In this issue:
The Lions hold on against the Vikings
The Bears learn first hand about Tebow Time
The Packers roll, but lose Jennings
For 3 quarters, the Denver Broncos could do nothing against the Chicago Bears. Tim Tebow threw the ball 16 times and completed just 3 for 45 yards. Clearly, the Broncos had no shot trailing 10-0 with under 3 minutes left in the game. But this isn’t an ordinary team, this is the Broncos with Tim Tebow. Late in the 4th quarter is Tebow Time. Denver got on the scoreboard with 2:09 left on a 10 yard Tebow touchdown pass, cutting the Chicago lead to 10-7. The Broncos try an onside kick but Chicago gets it. Denver is out of timeouts, so only the two minute warning can stop the clock. Well, that and Marion Barber going out of bounds with 1:55 left on a second down carry. With 56 seconds left, the Broncos took over on their own 19. Tebow moves the ball downfield with help from the Chicago secondary who played very soft on some big completions. Matt Prater hits a 59 yard field goal to send it into OT tied at 10.
The Bears won the coin toss, and Marion Barber made a diving catch giving the Bears excellent field position. But when it looked like he was going to break a long run, possibly a touchdown, the ball was stripped and Elvis Dumerville recovered. Everyone in the stadium and watching on TV knew how this would end. Denver moved into field goal range, and Prater hit the game winner from 51 yards out with 8:40 left in overtime and Denver left with a 13-10 win. Aside from the Bears helping the Broncos, Tebow saved his best for the 4th quarter and overtime (18 of24 for 181 yards). He was 21-40 for 236 yards, a TD and an INT for the game. Caleb Hanie was 12 of 19 for 115 yards for the Bears.
The Detroit Lions got off to a big lead in the first half and held on to beat the Minnesota Vikings 34-28. It was 21-7 after the first quarter and 31-14 at halftime. But Detroit managed just 3 points in the second half. The Vikings made it interesting in the 4th quarter with the Vikings in the red zone in the closing seconds, but couldn’t score. It looked like Deandre Levy grabbed and pulled Joe Webb’s facemask, but there wasn’t a flag and the Lions held on.
The Vikings had 425 net yards to just 280 for the Lions. Minnesota had 35 carries for 269 yards. Joe Webb led the way with 109 yards, and Toby Gerhardt added 90. Adrian Peterson didn’t play. But Minnesota had 6 turnovers (3 fumbles, 3 picks), including a pick 6 and a fumble recovery for a touchdown. Detroit didn’t turn the ball over. Matthew Stafford threw 2 touchdown passes and was 20 of 29 for 208 yards. Detroit ran for just 72 yards, but with defensive scores and a short field, the total yards weren’t going to be as many as usual.
The Green Bay Packers had a tough game against the Giants last week, but it doesn’t get much easier than the 46-16 romp over the Oakland Raiders. The Raiders did what they could to help the Packers with turnovers, penalties and missed coverage. It was garbage time in the first half…
By the 4th quarter some of the starters were already out of the game. Unfortunately, Greg Jennings wasn’t out soon enough. He left the field on a cart, and will miss 2-3 weeks, or likely the rest of the regular season, with an MCL sprain. So far this season, the question hasn’t been will the Packers win the game. The question has been how much will they win by, and will anyone get hurt.
Mason Crosby crushed the opening kickoff out the back of the end zone, and the Raiders started at the 20. The drive got to the Green Bay 43, when pressure by Clay Matthews forced a bad throw and DJ Smith picked it off. The Pack started on the Green Bay 48 and got 5 free yards on an offside penalty. On the next play, Ryan Grant went off the left side of the line, got outside, and scored on a 47 yard TD run to put Green Bay up 7-0.
Penalties stalled the Raiders, and the Packers took over at the Green Bay 20. A big 3rd down conversion to Jordy Nelson put the ball on the Oakland 42, a 31 yard gain. An offside penalty gave Rodgers a chance to hit Jennngs in the end zone, but a good defensive play knocked it away. It just delayed the inevitable. On 3rd and 5 he found James Jones for a first down at the 29. Jennings took a short pass and took it 12 yards to the 17. Grant caught a 13 yard pass and it was first and goal. With 4 tight ends on first and goal from the 4, Rodgers hit Ryan Taylor in the end zone for his first career catch and touchdown and it’s 14=0 in the first quarter.
The Raiders couldn’t do anything and the Packers got the ball back at their own 25. They got to the Oakland 15, but a clipping call backed them up to the 30. A penalty and a few short passes moved it to the 11, but a procedure call put it on the 16 and Rodgers had to throw it away. Crosby’s 34 yard field goal made it 17-0.
Oakland started on the own 29. A three and out gave Green Bay the ball at the Packers 15. A pass to Nelson and a pass to Driver mixed in with a run by Grant put the ball on the Raiders 37, and the Raiders were caught with too many men on the field. Rodgers went to the end zone, and Jordy Nelson made the catch to put Green Bay up 24-0. After that, it was garbage time already. Carson Palmer decided he would rather watch the Packers offense than his own. So on second and 8, Palmer was looking for Darius Heward-Bey and instead hit Charles Woodson. Starting at the 25, Rodgers was sacked at the 32. So obviously it’s time to throw deep, and the Raiders are called for pass interference at the Green Bay 6. On second and goal, Ryan Grant runs up the middle for his second TD and a 31-0 Green Bay lead.
The Raiders have another 3 and out. On 4th down, Shane Lechler overthrows an open receiver, and Green Bay took over at the Oakland 28. Rodgers found Driver at the 8, and on first down, Rodgers was back to pass. It was ruled a fumble, but his arm was clearly going forward. Oakland ran it back for a touchdown, but there was a clipping call on the return. It took awhile, but Mike McCarthy challenged and won. Not only did Green Bay get the ball back, but the penalty on Oakland gave the Pack a first and goal at the 4. After an incompletion on first and 2nd down, the third down pass was a battle between Mike Mitchell and Jermichael Finley. It was ruled incomplete and challenged by Oakland, and the Raiders won the challenge, it was a pick, keeping Green Bay from scoring. The Raiders got to the Packers 14, but when Palmer went to the end zone, Robert Francois got the pick and Green Bay had 40 seconds left. A 31-0 lead at halftime, and it’s 13-0 for the Pack this season.
Randall Cobb had a 50 yard return, but Oakland challenged and Cobb did step out. However, the replay equipment malfunctioned and no challenge was allowed. Rodgers started at the Oakland 47 and came out throwing, hitting Driver at the 19. Jennings gained 8 on second down, but was injured on the play. Rodgers was sacked on 3rd down, and Crosby hit a 38 yard field goal to make it 34-0. Oakland was offside, but the Packers kept the points.
The Raiders finally got on the board. Michael Bush scored from 2 yards out with 8:15 left in the 3rd quarter. The big play was a 36 yard pass to Heyward Bey. The Packers answered with a field goal and a fumble return for a touchdown. It was 43-7 because the extra point was blocked. Crosby was able to add another field goal to make it 46-7. Oakland added a safety (Matt Flynn tackled in the end zone) and a 5 yard touchdown pass from Palmer to Kevin Boss).