Packers Stock Report: This Sucks Edition

The worst part about the Green Bay Packers choking away the NFC Championship game in Seattle is the fact that it’s going to be a full year before the Packers have a shot at redemption.

At this point, the regular season is basically a formality for the Packers. They’ll win between 10 and 13 games next season, contend for the division title, and be in the mix for a top-seed in the playoffs. Just like they are every season.

Next season, like just about every season during the Favre/Rodgers era, will be full of memorable moments, big wins, and bigger performances from the likes of Aaron Rodgers, Jordy Nelson and Clay Matthews.

But through it all, what happened on Sunday will linger in the back of my mind and the minds of all Packers fans.  We’ll love what happens on the march toward another NFC North title, but we’ll constantly be looking ahead to the postseason, and wondering if it’s all going to be washed away by yet another playoff meltdown.

Not only have the Packers been one of the most successful and exciting teams in football during the Favre/Rodgers era, they also lead the league in gut-wrenching postseason defeats. Vikings fans will claim to be the leader in the gut-wrenching defeat category, but that’s yet another area where they can’t match the Packers.

Super Bowl 32, The Terrell Owens catch, the Michael Vick game, 4th and 26, the 2007 NFC championship, the strip-sack fumble OT loss in Arizona, losing in the divisional round after a 15-1 regular season, and whatever the hell you want to call Sunday’s meltdown — all of those add up to a level of postseason failures that would make the Atlanta Braves blush.

Thankfully, none of that overshadows the two Super Bowls the Packers have won amidst all those tear-your-heart-out losses. And, with all due respect to Josh Sitton, I’d much rather root for a team that has a legit shot to win it all every season and collapses 80 percent of the time instead of a team that is lucky to reach the postseason twice per decade.

But what happened on Sunday hurts, and it’s going to hurt for a long time. Redemption will only come if the Packers make their way back to the NFC title game a year from now and win the damn thing.

That might be harsh and unfair, but another division title and playoff disappointment won’t heal the hole blasted in my Packers psyche on Sunday. Doesn’t mean I won’t enjoy whatever thrilling ride the Packers take me on next season and appreciate everything they will probably accomplish. It just means true redemption is at least a year way, and that’s a long time to wait.

On to the final Packers Stock Report of this season:

Rising

Mason Crosby
Crosby trotted onto the field far too often for my liking, but man, what a kick to send the game into overtime.

Julius Peppers
Of all the Packers players I feel for today, I might feel the most for Peppers. He deserved a shot at the Super Bowl.

Aaron Rodgers
I know I’ll get flack for this one, but I don’t care. Rodgers wasn’t anything special on Sunday, but he did a damn fine job going up against the league’s best defense on one leg. Most healthy quarterbacks would not have been able to do what Rodgers did Sunday against that defense on the road.

Steady

Offensive line
Another great effort in pass blocking from the offensive line. I say re-sign Bryan Bulaga and keep this group together for next season.

Richard Rodgers
I’m looking forward to Rodgers taking the next step in 2015.

Falling

Brandon Bostick
Be nice to Bostick, Packers fans. He’s far from the only reason Green Bay pissed that game away.

Mike McCarthy
Sometimes I wonder if the Packers success running the ball early in games hurts them later in games. Does it give McCarthy reason to think he’s coaching the 1993 Dallas Cowboys instead of the high-flying Packers led by Aaron Rodgers? Going conservative and pointlessly running up the middle over and over again in the fourth quarter was hard to watch. So was settling for field goals twice on Seattle’s 1-yard line. Mike should’ve tried to punch it in at least once.

——————

Adam Czech is a a freelance sports reporter living in the Twin Cities and a proud supporter of American corn farmers. When not working, Adam is usually writing about, thinking about or worrying about the Packers. Follow Adam on Twitter. Twitter .

——————

  • David

    Great article, right on the money.

    MM is falling very, very fast for the reasons you stated!

  • Razer

    Good perspective Adam and, yes, we’ll all be back at the watering hole next year. I will give you the expected flak for putting Rodgers at the top. His body of work is good but his play on Sunday was sub par and you need your stud to play in the big game. His accuracy was off and his touch was replaced with velocity. If you want to play the injury card, fine but I didn’t see much evidence of his hobble. I’ll put it down to nerves and piss-poor play calling.

    • Chad Toporski

      The only reason we’re not talking about Rodgers’ interceptions today is because the Packers ended up +3 on turnovers. The only reason we’re not talking about his performance is because he wasn’t given the chance to shine in putting the game away.

      But Rodgers does deserve that criticism.

      • Since ’61

        Chad – I disagree. As I posted to Razer and below. Packers were 3/14 on 3rd downs. If Rodgers is healthy he runs for 2-3 of those. Chews up clock and reduces time for a Seattle comeback. Plus Seattle can’t drop everyone into coverage opening up passing game. If Rodgers is healthy it’s game over. Thanks, Since ’61

    • Since ’61

      Razer – you’re correct about his accuracy. However, the Packers were 3/14 on 3rd downs. If Rodgers is healthy he runs for 2-3 1st downs. This keeps drives alive and chews up clock reducing or eliminating time for a Seattle comeback. Plus if Seattle needs to respect Rodgers running they can’t drop everyone into coverage which opens up the passing and improves Rodgers accuracy. His injury was a big factor. Thanks, Since ’61

  • David

    Question; why don’t the Packers put a man in motion? NE did it all day yesterday and it gave the Defense fits!

    • Razer

      McCarthy was too busy trying to hit his 20 runs target…

    • Chad Toporski

      Did you not watch Randall Cobb??

      • David

        I mean continue in motion right before the snap, Cobb goes in motion and then sets before the snap.

        • croatpackfan

          And then it was false start penalty…

  • Taryn Miller

    ” but another division title and playoff disappointment…..”

    Isn’t winning the Division suppose to take the sting away from not getting a SB or even playing in it…..Another banner to wave in the face of the mediocre while chanting Lions and Bears and Vikings all suck…all the while Rodgers is cracking from carrying the team and the worse may yet to come for reasons…to be determined.

    • billy

      bah, how many crappy Div Champs hats can a guy have…i want more, times running out…before ya know it we will have some chump trying to QB the team into mediocrity like the gory years…

      • Taryn Miller

        Exactly…..I got an ear full of the rhetoric about at least we won the Division….it isn’t enough and soon you settle for a wild card and then reaching 8-8

  • aaronqb

    McCarthy doesn’t belong in the falling category. That is a knee jerk reaction. He didn’t drop the pass on 3rd and 6, tell Burnett to hit the deck, try to field the punt rather than block, etc etc etc. The team choked BIG TIME. But, the players chokes, not McCarthy.

    • David

      Wrong, wrong and wrong. The Packers moved the ball best yesterday when in hurry up mode. Don’t remember seeing it in second half. If so, not in the 4th quarter. All the Packers needed was to score 10 points after they had a 16-0 lead. They had 10 min of second quarter, and the entire second half to do so but MM went turtle and that is that!

    • billy

      well he did call three straight lacy runs for nothing after the INT didnt he?? At least give Starks a chance there or Rodgers…what was it, 3rd and 12 or something and another run for two yard…jeez…it didnt even kill much clock…

    • croatpackfan

      I agree with you. We did not see whole field. We do not know if there was available receivers. People assume, because plays failed. I put blame on Mike McCarthy for only one mistake. By my opinion it is huge mistake. He had 3 time outs. He had to call time out after Seahawks scored 19-14 TD, before, what all of us knows, on side kick. To calm down young players, to refocus his team. If he did it, Packers would catch the ball! He get another chance. After Seahawks scored another TD for 19-20. If he called time out then I’m sure Seahawks would not score 2 point conversion. By my opinion that was the mistake which we can count on Mike McCarthy.

    • barutanseijin

      So why have his teams consistently choked since the super bowl run? They’ve played uptight, scared & stupid in playoff games ever since. If it had been just one guy, I’d say maybe you’re right. But this many guys screwing up and playing passive, don’t lose ball? Something’s wrong with the coaching.

    • Larry Whitman

      Croatpackfan and I discussed this earlier in the season. MM’s play calling and game planning for NE was well received by most. Why wasn’t the same level of intensity evident for the NFC championship game as it was with the Patriots’ game?
      While I didn’t see most of the game, knowing two Crosby FGs started the scoring, I was uncomfortable. When I discovered the Packers had 4th and goal TWICE, I started to worry. Touchdowns instead of FGs are a necessity in the playoffs.

  • JoeBlowinski

    Given all of the past heartbreaks, this one takes the cake. Maybe time will heal the way I feel right now, but I doubt it. Something has changed in me, maybe even died. I don’t feel like a fan any more. I don’t feel like I can pick myself off the floor and wholehearted love this team and football any more. Over the past 40 years, I have been a die hard Packer fan. I was a fan after suffering through the 70’s, 80’s and all the boneheaded Favre losses along with our recent post season failures. But now, after the greatest collapse in Conference Championship history, I just don’t know if I can muster the energy, or can become once again willing to put myself in the position to have my heart broken again for something as ultimately trivial as football. I think this loss has beaten the love out of me. I sincerely hope I will change, but I think I’m no longer a fan. It just isn’t worth it for something I have no control over.

    • David

      You are not kidding my man!

    • MT

      You’ve just summed up how I felt the past 24 hours. The idea of emotionally de-investing in this team and this season and recommitting next fall is the thing I’m having trouble with

      • TedTomsin

        How do you think Aaron Rodgers is going to feel? The same way. He and the team will struggle big time from this collosal loss. They won’t even make the playoffs next season. Book it.
        Ted

        • croatpackfan

          No, they will win SB 50. Book it. If they are real, and they are, this will harden them a lot. This will make them killers who does not left survivors. Expect epic season. I thought that epic season should be this one. It was epic, but not how I saw it. But I saw SB win. And if it is not his season, it will be next one.

          • Larry Whitman

            There is some “poetic justice” possible with a SB50 win. I look forward to it. What I’d really like to see is Bart Starr recovered from his recent medical setbacks to return as honorary captain for that game!

    • NemoOutis

      This is a lesson in reality. American football is the game with a 60 minute clock that takes over 3 hours to play but has only 11 minutes of action when the ball is in play. The game is all hype, all talk, all commercials and all money. The players’ allegiances are to themselves and to the league, not to the particular team with which they have current contracts with and certainly not to the fans of that team. Pity the poor fan who lives vicariously through his team and suffers greatly when the team disappoints him by choking and collapsing under pressure. To that fan I say, “Get a life.”

      • JoeBlowinski

        While I did pour out my heart over the despair I felt because my beloved Packers threw away their year, never the less, I have a life full of love of a terrific woman, kids, grandkids, all the while surrounded by friends who I care deeply for. Your post contains little beyond bitterness and vitriol. I hope it’s not a reflection of what the rest of your life contains.

        • NemoOutis

          Glad to hear that you are more rooted In reality than your first message indicated. To some, football is as addictive as the nicotine in cigarettes to smokers. The constant media conversation about it conditions us to be fans, especially in a small town like Green Bay, but the game itself is as empty as smoke. That was the point of my first post. I’m sorry that you misinterpreted it.

          • JoeBlowinski

            Ahh. I’m delighted that I misinterpreted you too. Rest assured that I understand that the NFL is nothing more than entertainment. However, given the nature of the Packer franchise, it shouldn’t be that difficult to understand how much those of us practicing the Wisconsin State Religion can become wrapped up in our team. I’m still not sure I can trust them enough to love them as much as I have in the past. That’s what this loss has changed. If that make me shallow, then I resemble that remark.

    • billy

      thats how i felt/feel but thinking about it today, hey, its something i love, its hard not to get so worked up, impossible in fact, but i told myself, when those nice sunny hot days of training camp come, you know you’ll be down there at least once…and i will……

    • 50ways to lose a championship

      Now you know how Viking fans feel….. Only their losses were Super Bowls

    • TedTomsin

      Joe, it isn’t worth it. Give it up. I did today. I went to a hypnotist and he erased all of the game from my subconscious mind. I’m feeling great today. I know what happened from reading here but he erased all the emotional garbage I had for being a fan. Let the Packers go. There’s better things in life than this bullshit losing investment. You have a better chance at winning Publisher’s Clearinghouse than seeing the Packers go to the super bowl.. As a bonus you will live longer and have more hair.
      Ted

  • stevefraser12345

    When the Pack went “prevent defense” and gave up a huge gain for a critical first down, I had the feeling the game was going to end badly for us.

  • tfeds1

    I have not read anything about why Clay Mathews wasn’t in the game at the end of the 4th quarter. Did he take himself out? He was back out there during OT. What happened?

    • Jerry

      Herd Clay was complaining about a sore knee, I read it somewhere but don’t remember exactly where,might have been ESPN NFL.

    • barutanseijin

      The Journal today said he was gassed.

  • Larry

    Nailed it on all fronts…Next years schedule looks harder than this years though-so I hope your right.

  • don trask

    Just remember, just 2 short years after the 4th and 26 game, Sherman was shown the door. I realize that McCarthy thinks he is secure in GB but somebody has to whisper in his ear that the bar is set at winning Superbowls in GB and he too has a choice, he can coach the Packers or he can coach conversatively, he just cant’ do both.

  • billy

    made me physically ill for a day now….cant sleep last night like a lot of you, still makes be sick…but…I’m not throwing away my Packer clothes and “stuff”, in fact as pissed as i am, i can’t wait for draft, and hot sunny training camp day….i will still be at Lambeau next year having fun and soaking in the atmosphere on my one game a year…what the hell…it hurts bad and i can’t wear my fav packer hat cuz i don’t want to answer stupid questions “what happened to the Pack”…time to move on, hard as it is….and its hard…

    • Jerry

      “Time Heals All Wounds” but this may take a hell of a long time for the pain of this epic collapse to go away!

    • GBPDAN

      I wore my favorite Packer hat, with pride, all day. At least we have a team that is as good as any in the League.

      • croatpackfan

        The best, not one of… The best! And despite it hurts a lot, I’m proud. Why? We shouwed what team we will be next year. We showed to the people for f*****g 56 minutes of that Seattle game. Be aware… And I can’t wait.

    • BradHTX

      Well said, Billy, thanks for the perspective. And here’s some more:

      This loss hurt, maybe more than any other. It will take a long time to get over, and there will always be a scar, just like 4th & 26. But to all of us, and especially Joe Blowinski above, just a reminder…

      We are fans of the most special team in professional sports. One of the two second oldest teams in the NFL, and half of the most storied rivalry in the league. The proud owner of the most league championships, and the only team to “three-peat” — twice, no less.

      And all this from the team owned not by a wealthy investor group or megalomaniac fan as his personal fantasy team, but by the people. The people of the smallest city to be home to a first-tier professional sports team, possibly in the entire world.

      That is unique, and it is very special. All of us throughout world who root for the Packers share a bond. We’re not just a “nation.” We’re a family, bound together with green and gold DNA.

      For that reason, as tough to swallow as this loss is, as frustrated as I am with the players and coaches for snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, I can never stop being a fan and loving this team.

  • BubblerBoy

    Right on the money.

    Rather than getting all excited about again beating the Lions, Bears, and Vikes in 2015, it is high time that the focus shifts to the 7-6 playoff record of Mike McCarthy (3-6 outside the glorious Super Bowl run).

  • David

    Does anyone know if Larrivee said, “There is your dagger.” After the Burnett INT?

  • croatpackfan

    Form all the Mike McCarthy “haters” I wish you Rex Ryan for yours team coach!

    • barutanseijin

      So you would’ve stuck with Infante because Dave Wannstedt was out there? That’s like sliding after an INT with a whole lot of green in front of you.

      Doug Collins got canned after taking the Bulls to the conference finals in ’89. Harsh. But I don’t think Doug Collins would have won six championships, even with that team.

  • Nick Perry

    MM needs a OC that does more than come over and look at what the defense is doing on a IPad with Rodgers during a game. McCarthy can’t seem to call a good game against a Great Team and manage the game. The comment about the hitting a certain number of running plays was like fingernails on a chalkboard or teeth scraping a fork to my ears.

    The Packers ST were absolutely pathetic this season. Sure they had a few punt returns by Hyde but the blunders far outnumbered the good.

    Bostick has been here 3 years, time to cut ties. He’s done nothing to show he can be that “Athletic TE” the Packers want. I like this Richard Rodgers, he catches everything thrown to him and will only get better.

    • barutanseijin

      McCarthy’s comment is a firing offense. Who cares how many runs you had if you win? The guy doesn’t have a winning attitude. Inexcusable.

  • Since ’61

    Here’s the thing about the Seattle game. The Packers were 3 for 14 on 3rd downs. If Rodgers is healthy he runs and picks up at least 2-3 more of those 1st downs. That extends drives, resulting in FGs or more but more importantly chews up clock which reduces or eliminates time for a Seattle comeback. Hate to say it but Rodgers injury may have cost a trip to the SB. If he’s healthy it’s game over in Seattle. We’ll be back. Thanks, Since ’61

    • Nick Perry

      All excellent points Since ’61 but my biggest concern for this team moving forward is what losing a game like this will do to them mentally. I’d like to say we’ll be back, I thought after the draft NEXT YEAR would be the Packers year after Adams and Rodgers had a year in the system. Rodgers injury was HUGE, totally agree but MM needs a decent OC or Assistant HC to either call or manage the game, McCarthy doesn’t do both well in big games.

      • Since ’61

        Nick -I would be fine if we had an OC or assistant HC call the game. However, that doesn’t guarantee anything or necessarily mean that we would be an happier with the play calling when we lose a game. Thanks, Since ’61

  • Tundraboy

    Wow that pretty much sums up how I feel. Looking at the positives and there are many,Have the 4 rookies who just had a full season experience and baptism in victory and defeat, and with 2 new ILB/s we are ready for redemption. That is the only thing I can believe for the next year to come.