Surviving Sunday: News, Notes and Links from the Packers playoff bye week

There’s been plenty of football played over the last four days. Unfortunately, none of it was played by the Green Bay Packers.

To help fill that void, here’s a playoff edition of Surviving Sunday. I’ll cover as many Packers topics as I can, and, as always, mix in a few non-Packers thoughts and opinions that will make you laugh, cry, hurl, or all three.

Packers news, notes and links

  • Don’t get me wrong, it’s not good that Aaron Rodgers is battling an injured calf. However, it’s been interesting watching him operate out of the pocket using quick passes that incorporate the running backs and tight ends these last two weeks. Haven’t we been wanting the Packers’ offense to incorporate more timing routes and check-downs ever since Rodgers took over? Again, I’m not saying the calf injury is a good thing, but maybe it’ll force Mike McCarthy and Rodgers to add yet another wrinkle to an already dangerous offense.
  • The general sentiment out there among Packers fans is that they’d rather avoid playing Dallas next weekend, if possible. I get that sentiment, but that mindset also ticks me off. I hate the Cowboys. They ruined my teenage years by always beating the Packers in the playoffs. Jerry Jones is a terrible person. Their new stadium is an atrocity. It’d be a whole lot of fun to beat the Cowboys in the playoffs and send them spiraling back to mediocrity. Besides, should we really be that afraid of Tony Romo in January, on the road?
  • New Year’s Eve brought news that the Packers have started talking to Letroy Guion about a contract extension. I’ve got no problem with bringing Guion back — I like his athleticism and the job he’s done filling in for B.J. Raji this season. But hopefully the Packers don’t go too overboard on the deal. Guion isn’t an all-pro and I don’t think it’s a given that he can repeat what he’s done most of this season. I’m sure Ted Thompson has a number in mind, and hopefully that number means the Packers could have both Raji and Guion back in 2015 at decent prices.
  • Obviously, Ndomukong Suh is a piece of trash and his stepping on Rodgers’ leg was intentional. But I don’t have a problem with his suspension being reduced to a fine only. Call me insensitive, but I didn’t think Suh’s offense warranted a playoff suspension.
  • J.J. Watt is a helluva football player, but Rodgers should be this season’s MVP. If you’re starting an NFL franchise and your goal is to win right away, you take Rodgers over Watt every time. Plus 10 of Watt’s 20.5 sacks came against the hapless Titans and Jaguars.
  • If you could only bring back one player next season, would you bring back Tramon Williams or Davon House? Williams is the crafty veteran who’s still good. House is the younger player with potential who can’t seem to stay healthy long enough to put it all together. Gun to my head, I’d bring back Tramon. I know that goes against the Packers keep-it-young philosophy, but man, Tramon hasn’t slowed down much and he’s playing with more passion and aggression than he ever has before. I just don’t trust House to stay healthy.
  • Go Pack Go!

Non-Packers news, notes and links

  • Here’s legendary WWF announcer Jim Ross calling the Oregon Ducks blowout victory over Florida State in the Rose Bowl. “GOOD GOD, HE’S BROKEN IN HALF!!!!”
  • This might open up a can of worms, but it’s been bugging me. A police officer shoots an unarmed man in Ferguson and a grand jury doesn’t indict the officer. A police officer chokes out and kills an unarmed man in New York, no indictment. A state trooper is heading to the scene of a motorcycle accident with his siren blaring and lights flashing in Minnesota. A car pulls out in front of him, the trooper hits it, and the two occupants of the vehicle die. The trooper is indicted on manslaughter charges. WTF? To my amateur legal mind, it seems that of the three, the trooper was the least deserving of an indictment. By far.
  • I just finished reading The QB: The Making of Modern Quarterbacks. Highly recommended.
  • I was sick a couple of weeks ago and did nothing but watch true crime documentaries. The best one was Murder on a Sunday Morning. The defense attorney is a total badass.
  • Good to see the best football video game on the market getting some well-deserved publicity.
  • Slate put together a tremendous compilation of everything we were outraged about in 2014. I wonder what the Packers version of this would look like for 2014?
  • Finally, do any of our wonderful readers play board games? The wife and I are always looking for new ways to entertain ourselves now that our lives revolve around our 1 year old instead of which new bar or restaurant to try. I’ve heard good things about Pandemic and Ticket to Ride. Thoughts? Any other board game suggestions? Let me know in the comments.

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 .


28 thoughts on “Surviving Sunday: News, Notes and Links from the Packers playoff bye week

  1. Forget board games. Get into home brewing! That’s right, brewing your own beer (or cider?) Easy to do. Cheaper than buying. Fun to “roll your own” by tweaking millions of easy recipes free on the internet. My grandchildren help me and learn to respect alcohol.

    1. Not a bad idea, Bob. But there are so many great breweries near me that it’s far to easy to pick up a growler or two on the way home from work. Plus my belly would get even bigger if I always had a keg of my own product downstairs 🙂

      1. Settlers of Catan is pretty good, not too convoluted, and has plenty of adaptations. Reminds me a lot of Ticket to Ride. If you’re looking for something really complex and convoluted, Merchant of Venus is something else, altogether.

      2. Also recommemd Settlers of Catan, got it for Christmas, it’s great. Can’t ever beat a good game of Risk, but you need 3

      3. During the depression, my father, aged about 10, would go “rush the growler” for his uncles: that is, they would give him a nickel to go down to the local tavern and fill a large pail with beer. Times change.

  2. “The general sentiment out there among Packers fans is that they’d rather avoid playing Dallas next weekend, if possible.”

    I have said often….Bring on all comers…..if you’re looking to dodge anyone for fear of losing you already lost…or you should be a boxing fan as you’ll love how opponents duck each other for years….Mayweather/Pacquiao #LOSERS

    Any opponent,no excuses…and that includes the ‘Golden Calf ‘….one and done is not acceptable for any reason if he is the ‘One’….Super Bowl or Bust!!!! 🙂

    1. Not so much avoiding playing cowboy as I would love to see. A better team then the Panthers play the hawks

  3. “The general sentiment out there among Packers fans is that they’d rather avoid playing Dallas next weekend, if possible.”

    I don’t think of it as avoiding Dallas, I think of it more like “wouldn’t it be nice for Dallas to “one-and-done” in the playoffs again?” Accomplishes two things: 1. A Dallas team that the Packer defense really doesn’t match up well against doesn’t come to Lambeau next week, and 2. a weak Carolina team that really doesn’t belong in the playoffs, does.

    We can talk all we want about wanting to prove your mettle against the best teams and in the toughest scenarios as you try to win a Lombardi, but if that were the case who would care about home field advantage? The key is to win the trophy–independent of personal vendettas–and it doesn’t matter to me if the path turns out soft or hard, so long as it gets done. If it comes down to vendettas, I’d almost rather see Detroit come back to Lambeau so the Packers can run over the top of #90 for another 60 minutes.

  4. “A police officer shoots an unarmed man in Ferguson and a grand jury doesn’t indict the officer.”

    If you read the release of the grand jury data and it still bugs you…I’ll drop it there

  5. Self proclaimed board game nerd here. So RE: Board Games.

    Settlers of Catan. Carcassone, Puerto Rico and St. Petersburg are all GREAT 3-6 person strategy games. If you want a general hilarity/party game, Killer Bunnies and Quelf are really fun for 6-10.

      1. Carcassone is also really good 2 person game. If you want a quick/easy card game, Lost Cities is good for 2 people and Settlers of Catan also has a 2 person card game that’s gotten good reviews. We own that but haven’t gotten around to playing it yet.

    1. Well, the weather should help the Packers at least. High of 19 on the extended forecast for Green Bay on Sunday.

    2. Don’t like this matchup one bit. I have a sneaking suspicion that the Dallas offensive line will have the Packer front 7 on roller skates. Just when you needed the Lions to stop being the Lions….congrats on drawing Carolina, Seattle.

      1. We’ll be fine. Murray has averaged under 4 ypc since week 10. Our pass D is better than DET’s. Our OL is better. Eddie/Aaron/Jordy/Randall are gonna wreck them. Their only hope is for really bad weather and to be able to run. Won’t happen.

        1. I wish I had your confidence…but then, I always skew pessimistic on games and matchups.

          1. Dobber, the Cowboys will not be able to function in the cold. The Packers will be fine. You are worried about the Dallas offensive line? They better be worried about ours.

            We have what could be the best offensive line or for sure top 3 in Packers history, we have a pro bowl running back, pro bowl fullback, two pro bowl receivers, an emerging rookie tight end and the best qb to ever play the game. We have a now top 5 defense the past 8 weeks. The Packers have very little holes except for the hole in Shawn Slocum’s head.

            Enjoy this ride we are on and quit worrying. Grab a cold PBR and enjoy this victory. We are due Dobber. This is the healthiest team we had in ages. We are headed to a super bowl Dobber. I’ve never been wrong when I make super bowl predictions. I already know who won and the score but I will keep that a secret not to spoil the fun that is to come.

          2. Nah. I thought we’d lose the Pats game and we executed better than we have in 3 years and won because of it. I thought we’d lose the New Orleans and Seattle games and we did.

            The matchups favor Green Bay. I don’t want to lose because I’m so invested in the outcome as a fan. But if I were just a gambler, I’d be sprinting to the table to put money on the Pack. Dallas just isn’t that good.

        2. I think your right. We have the better, more balanced and explosive offense and Rodger. We are healthy and I just know we will be prepared. We have played some pretty tough WRs and RBs all year and I gotta think the team is sick of hearing about one and done. What better way than to play Dallas to get things started.

  6. I’ve actually played Ticket to Ride. It’s ok. If you are a fellow nerd, however, check out munchkin. It’s a tongue in cheek card game version of dungeons and dragons. Highly amusing if you commit to your character. May need more than 2 people, but I highly recommend it.

  7. I also Don’t think we have the beef on D to stop Dallas. We need to out score them because their D isn’t that good. Let’s hope Rodgers calf is good enough to work his majic!

    1. What’s with all the panic about our defense? We’ve got beef. Plenty of beef in the middle. Barrington and Matthews in the middle. Nick Perry is healthy. Guion and Daniels playing great. We’re fine. The only thing I am worried about is our fans selling tickets to the opponents. We need to compete with Seattle for the loudest stadium. The fans need to bring their loudest voices for this game. 12th man damnit!!

      1. Personally, I’m not panicked… just a little concerned about the Cowboys’ ability to stretch the defense in multiple directions with guys like Murray, Bryant, and Witten.

  8. My son said Pandemic and Ticket to Ride are both very good games. Pandemic is a co-op where you play WITH the wife to survive the pandemic, in case she’s not especially competitive. Most board games want 3-4 players instead of 2. We all played Splendor over the holidays, very easy to learn, only $20, and very, very fun.

    1. Agreed – Pandemic is really cool because of the “collaborate against the game” nature of it. And it’s timely!

Comments are closed.