Read Everything That Dunks Must Converge

Read Everything That Dunks Must Converge
by Bryan Harvey

Truth & lies in Pixar's 'The Good Dinosaur'

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by Bryan Harvey

A world of child soldiers & cowboys

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by Bryan Harvey

To their own devices: Pablo Larrain's 'The Club'

To their own devices: Pablo Larrain's 'The Club'
by Bryan Harvey

2014 NFC Championship Game

January 18, 2015

Some quick points (click here for the AFC Championship game):

When Green Bay has the ball:


Eddie Lacy meet Cham Kancellor. He cancels stuff.
The Packers can't win without Eddie Lacy having a big game today. Rodgers' arm is magical, but his torn calf muscle isn't. Lacy must be the legs on offense. Every positive yard he gains potentially buys Rodgers time in the pocket.

Someone in the passing game not named Jordy Nelson or Randall Cobb needs to have a big day, if not statistically, then in terms of impact. Against Dallas,  Andrew Quarless and Richard Rodgers both impacted the game by catching the Packers' first and last touchdowns of the game. Quarless, moreover, also had a big first down catch or two late in the game when Rodgers started to look a little less Bledsoe-like and little more I-can-do-whatever-the-hell-I-feel-like-on-a-damn-football-field-like.

Then, there was the impact on the game of Davante Adams. When Rodgers looked for him last week, he started to find himself as well. Bill Barnwell believes Adams might be matched up against Richard Sherman, suggesting that his primary role will be as a decoy. I get that. Sherman's great, but Sherman also got beat for a touchdown against the Carolina Panthers. The Packers offense needs to be inductive and not deductive. This means not necessarily taking what the defense gives them, which can lead to being too passive, but not ignoring whole sides of the field because of a particular name on a jersey and the hype said name has created for itself. Sherman is not the only Seahawks defender worth fearing, which means conceding his side of the field is a sign of retreat as much as it is a sign of intelligence.

The Green Bay offensive line simply has to block better than it did in the early season match-up between these two teams. Bryan Bulaga playing the whole game needs to mean something different in terms of pass protection. It needs to mean Rodgers is safe to read the defense because his eyes, like his arm, are magic, just ask Olivia Munn.

When Seattle has the ball:


Marsahwn Lynch helps Clay Matthews to sing like Neil Young on the track "Helpless."
When these two teams met in Week 1, the score at halftime was 17-10. The game ended with a score of 36 to 16. The absence of Bulaga at tackle was part of this discrepancy. But so, too, was Marshawn Lynch's physical and emotional gutting of the Green Bay defense.

The man ran for 110 yards, 94 of those yards came between the tackles. Since then, Green Bay has moved Clay Matthews to inside linebacker in order to harden the noted softness of its Week 1 defense. However, it was either Clay Matthews or Julius Peppers who was the target of Seattle defensive end Michael Bennett's dig: "I saw supposedly some of the best players in the league not want to tackle Marshawn Lynch. Of course, nobody is going to say nothing about that, but I seen a lot of guys whiff on tackles that should have been 2-yard gains, and they're supposed to be the best."

Whether Bennet's sentiments are just that, sentiment, or the substance of the reality, the Packers defense needs to prove that it has found more of a will to engage physically with the Seahawks' battering ram than it did in Week 1. Marshawn Lynch cannot be the most productive running back on the field if the Packers are to win.

Lastly, Green Bay has to do its best at keeping Russell Wilson inside the pocket. Who knows if this task is even possible? But what Wilson's mobility will surely do is highlight Rodgers' lack of mobility due to the torn calf muscle. Because of that juxtaposition between health and injury, Wilson could look other-worldly today.

Lastly, luck. The Packer defense needs to be lucky. Such was the case against Dallas. On the play where Peppers poked the ball loose from DeMarco Murray, Murray had nothing but green field between him and the end zone. When Peppers jabbed at the ball, he saved a touch down. He also showed the extent to which football is truly a game of inches. Just a few moments prior, Peppers swore he had tipped a throw by Tony Romo with his pinkie. If he had, then Green Bay would not have been flagged for pass interference, and Dallas would not have been given the first down. These moments that occur throughout a game are like grains of sand divided on a scale--you just hope they tip your way. Last week for Green Bay, they did, and we haven't even mentioned the Dez Bryant morality play that occurred on Dallas' last possession.


Bryan Harvey can be followed on Twitter @LawnChairBoys.

1 comments:

Bryan Harvey said...

WORST GAME EVER.

January 18, 2015 at 7:40 PM

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