Green Bay Packers vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 2014 Game 15 (Packers 20, Bucs 3)
As always, this post it what it says it is, unfiltered initial reactions as the game progresses. I always find it entertaining to compare initial impressions from the heat of the moment with more measured thoughts with time to think about it. Everything is up for discussion.
The Packers have been instructed by Mike McCarthy to not even talk about the Buffalo game -put it well behind them.
The Packers clinch a playoff spot with a win, but even if Detroit loses, still have to beat them next week to win the Division.
Bryan Bulaga is surprisingly active today. I guess he passed all of the concussion protocol tests. I thought the Packers would keep him out regardless.
No other surprises with the inactive list today.
Captains for the rest of this season (as voted on by the players) will be Aaron Rodgers (offense), Jordy Nelson (offense), Julius Peppers (defense), Morgan Burnett (defense), Randall Cobb (offense/ special teams) and Jarrett Bush (special teams).
Inactives for today’s game:
Green Bay Packers
16 QB Scott Tolzien
31 CB Davon House
54 LB Carl Bradford
72 C Garth Gerhart
80 TE Justin Perillo
83 WR Jeff Janis
99 DT Bruce Gaston
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
10 WR Robert Herron
11 WR Solomon Patton
25 RB Mike James
32 CB Isaiah Frey
73 T Anthony Collins
77 DL Lawrence Sidbury
86 TE/FB Evan Rodriguez
Win and in: That’s what you want. First step is to get into the playoffs. This is a game we must have. Great week of prep I like the way things have gone this week.
Captains.: It’s about getting into a postseason mindset. It was recommended, I thought about it – thought it was a great idea/ being a playoff captain is a great honor.
Peppers: The fact that Julius is knew… his credibility and what his teammates think of him.
Leaderships is not something that’s in your contract, it has to be earned. A great honor.
Buffalo: Any time you have a contest that things don’t go the way you wanted, you have to look at the things you can control, mental errors, focus on your fundamentals.
Played good defensive teams on the road: The environment makes a big diff in any contest. We’ve done pretty well on the road in the past, this hasn’t been our best year…
Bucs WRs: Jackson and Evans – 2 big physical receivers that go up and get the football. Both do a great job separating at the stem of there routes.
McCown: He’s been around, very astute about getting into favorable plays, good at getting the ball out.
Lovie Smith Defense: Personnel is the biggest change. Fundamentals and base principles are intact. Very similar to his Chicago defense.
Special teams changes: We’ve had way too many kicks blocked – the numbers are absurd, frankly. You have to overcome injuries. Had a padded practice on Thursday, spent some extra time there.
Packers vs. Bucs – First Impressions – First Half:
Packers win the toss and elect to receive.
Packers had come out running Lacy in the first series last few games. I would have changed thing up – Tampa Bay looked ready for it.
I already don’t like the look on Rodgers’ face.
Rodgers has already been hit about as much as he was in Buffalo game…
Defense balling with the pressure on McCown.
Matt Flynn warming up. Rodgers wincing as he jogs back onto the field. Something is wrong.
John Kuhn leading the way as Lacy rips off a big run. Announcer calls him “Kahn.” Wrath of Kahn, I guess?
Davante Adams had a bad game last week. Not a good start here. Drops what would have been a big 3rd down completion. Right in his hands, nothing difficult about it.
On the bright side, the Packers defense is not showing any propensity to allow the Bucs to do anything.
Eddie Lacy, shedding linebackers without breaking stride and running 44 yards to a TD.
Score at end of 1st quarter: GB 7 TB 0
I really wish the #Packers would teach James Starks to find a hole in the zone when he releases instead of just turning around at the LOS
I only start to worry about Crosby now if I see a hook in his kicks… slight one thereon a missed 48yd attempt.
Rodgers struggled to get the ball to Lacy on an outside zone play. Had to reach out at the end to get it there.
Guion gets totally owned on a run play, but it’s like it never happened. Penalty against TB.
Mike Evans get’s TB’s first 1st down of the game (3 min. left in the half).
All Tampa Bay has is jump balls to their big receivers. They really should do that a lot more than they do.
Score at end of 1st half: GB 10 TB 3
Packers vs. Bucs- First Impressions – Second Half:
Randall Cobb finally fair catches a punt after some near mis-adventures in the first half.
Don’t get going 4 wide receivers, empty backfield on fourth and one on the goal line. Either make them stop Lacy for 3rd straight time. Or at least have a RB so you can fake a handoff.
And that’s after handing off to John Kuhn on 3rd down. That’s where I would have gone play action.
Nascar D frees up Mike Neal to record the Packers 4th sack of the day.
Score at end of 3rd quarter: GB 10 TB 3
This has to be the least concerned I’ve ever been with Packers only leading by 7 in the 4th quarter.
Peppers with the forced fumble, but Bucs recover.
Rodgers looking for a deep shot to Nelson, instead dumps off to Quarless. First Quarless sighting…
Eddie Lacy with 99 yds, looks like 2nd straight game he’ll fall just short of 100 yds. Something’s hurting him, so he’s watching from sidelines as Packers close out with Kuhn and Starks.
Another 1st and goal from the one. Packers pass three straight times this time. Bring the 4 WRS in on 3rd down and Rodgers finds Nelson.
Rodgers records his first TD pass in two games.
McCown unloads ball to avoid 8th sack. Errant toss picked off b y Datone Jones, who proceeds to show that running with a football is not on the list of things he does well.
Final Score: GB 20 TB3
Packers defense had a great chance to pad their sack stats today… and did so.
Being named postseason captain seemed to agree with Morgan Burnett. One of his best games.
Jordy Nelson had a look of complete and utter focus all game long. Was NOT going to drop anything today.
Packers tight ends fairly invisible in the passing game. 2nd game in a row.
Some pretty questionable red zone play calling today. Way too predictable.
Packers tackling has been much more sure today.
After a very shaky start and an early sack, the Packers OL got it together. Rodgers was hit a few times, but no more sacks.
Packers defense with second straight solid game against teams without a real starting-level NFL QB. So how happy should we be?
No special teams disasters today, but still some shaky moments.
Jersey Al Bracco is the founder and editor of AllGreenBayPackers.com, and the co-founder of Packers Talk Radio Network. He can be heard as one of the Co-Hosts on Cheesehead Radio and is the Green Bay Packers Draft Analyst for Drafttek.com.