• January 21, 2022

Packers Make It Clear That They’re The Team To Beat

I don’t know if you saw the Packers and Saints game last night, but the Eagles got the chance to see the competition for the NFC title and it’s very formidable. There’s no question that Green Bay is the team to beat in the NFC and New Orleans is also amongst the three or four elite teams in the conference.

Super Bowl MVP Aaron Rodgers is probably a better quarterback this year than he was in 2010. He’s got more weapons at his disposal and last night he was utilizing them like a great musician playing an instrument.

Thankfully, the Eagles defense will be able to use the entire regular season as preparation for a possible playoff battle with the Packers amazing offense. Rodgers confidence is running high and once he gets into a grove, his passing is nearly impossible to stop.

The Packers also showed they can run the football effectively with Ryan Grant and James Starks, who carved up the Birds defense in the playoff game a year ago.

The Birds defense has one of the few secondaries, which could match up against the Packers outstanding receiver group of Greg Jennings, Donald Driver, Jordy Nelson, Jermichael Finley and rookie Randall Cobb. Remember Finley and Cobb weren’t there last year, so this group has improved.

Their defense didn’t look very impressive against Drew Brees and the Saints offense, but they made the plays when they had to. Brees and his group took a while to get going but they had a chance to send the game into overtime on the last play, but Green Bay’s defensive line stepped up with the game on the line.

The Eagles offensive line has a lot of work to do before they could handle the Packers defensive front, but that has to be their goal. New Orleans was able to spread the Packers defense out and pepper them with precision throws by Brees all night long.

Michael Vick should be able to do the same thing with his group of outstanding receivers, if and when he gets the opportunity and the Birds offensive line can give him the time.

I see four teams standing at the top of the NFC and that group includes the Packers, the Saints, the Eagles and the football team, which the Birds will play next week, the Atlanta Falcons. The Eagles should be the team of this quartet, which is able to make the most improvement during the season because so many of their players are playing together for the first time.

The Eagles must be focused on the Rams even if they saw the game last night, but we fans can look ahead and imagine how great a game an Eagles battle with the Packers could be. The best action movies always have a very impressive bad guy, the Eagles have a quite a challenge ahead for them in Green Bay.

GCOBB

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30 Comments

  • gary are you related to randell cobb?

  • wasnt there a boxer named randell “tex” cobb

  • I think Gary’s Grandfather invented the “Cobb Salad” ,, at least I heard Larry David from Curb your Enthisiasm” mentioned it a few seasons back..

    Randall Cobb may end up being the Offensive Rookie of the Year this Season
    He won’t get a lot of touches for their is plenty of Talen up and down the Packers Line-up, but he will make big plays in the return game and on certain packages when he’s on the field… A steal of a pick to get him at the end of the 2nd Round (#64 Overall), Eagles should have grabbed him instead of Safety Jarrett who was a reach at (#54 Overall) as the replacement for D-Jax who will walk after the 2011 Season..

  • Randall “Tex” Cobb who just got pounded by Larry Holmes and used to go on the Johhny CArson/David Letterman show and make fun of himself up.. He was a funny guy and I think went on to make a few spoof movies …

  • I just figured since gary loved randell cunningham so much he just decided to name his son after him

  • As “dominant” as Green bay looked last night, the Saints were still in a position to tie the game with no time left. Both teams have more issues on D than the Eagles. The Saints Secondary is terrible and the packers LB’s inconsistent. Not to mention both of these teams Red Zone D and special teams looked weak.

  • Couple of things to consider, especially because they are constantly being harped upon here:

    Run Pass Ratio.
    Green bay finished with 42 called passes and 23 rcalled uns. 65%
    N.O Saints finished with 52 called passes and 20 called runs. 72%

    Here are GB’s first 3 drives:
    P R P P P P P R P (7 pass 2 runs)
    P R P P P P (6 pass 1 run)
    P P P P P P (6 str8 runs)

    Hwere’s NO:
    R P
    P R P P P (for 5 to 2 over first 2 drives.

    So I’m not really buying the “you have to run” business I keep hearing from the multitude. Its the only way to keep Vick healthy….etc. Its not 1972 anymore.

    SO I suppose I’ll hear….”but our line is brutal!!!!” Well, frankly, the Saints and Pack aren’t great shakes either. Both QB’s were harassed coonstantly. There were 5 sacks and a lot of knock-downs.

    We complain about Watkins, the the #1 pick of the Pack can’t get on the field either. Despide being constantly harried, those 2 QBs last night went 59 of 84 for 731 and 6 picks. Amazing.

    Wouldn’t it be great to foronce watch a Bird’s QB operate like those 2 did last night? (and don’t talk to me about the Monday night game against the Division II Skins).

  • Whoops…meant 6 str8 passes

  • Vinnie – great stuff there. It’s so true about the run/pass ratio thing that is SO overplayed. The only successful power running team/team that doesn’t pass way more than run in the league right now is Pittsburgh, and they’re still a far cry from the Bettis days. It does also seem that the one’s crying for that old run heavy offense are the older cats too.

  • It was confirmed earlier today (which Paulman Reported about 2 weeks ago) that QB Peyton Manning had another surgery on his neck and will mostly be out for the Season.. The issuse with his nerve is causing pain in his lower neck,right shoulder and has not allowed him to be able to throw the ball any harder than a “lob toss”… This could be a career ending type of injury where if this nerve issue/damage cannot be taken care of, Peyton will be unable to throw the ball with any zip or over 20 yards which obviously means he cannot perform at the NFL Level.. It’s a shame and hopefully he can bounce back but having neck,nerve injuries is not an exact science and probably only time will tell if he can return but it won’t be anytime soon. .

  • reed, I agree and disagree with you. Both teams last night have their defensive issues as well as any other team but they were both facing explosive offenses. That typically happens when every good team face each other when the offenses are the strengths of the team. I would call the Saint’s DBs poor but when haven’t they been poor? They’ve been poor for a while and they weren’t that good when they won the Super Bowl their defense just make plays when they needed to. So I don’t think we can look at these 2 teams playing against each other and say their defense has more issues that ours. We will have to see what happens when our defense steps on the field against a team with a QB of high caliber and an explosive offense. We likely won’t see that this week.

  • Here you guys go again with the run/pass stuff. First off I agree that the ratio isn’t very important. But what is important that you are able to run when you need to AND that you do it when the other team has weaknesses against it. That’s the problem people have with the Eagles. It’s not the exact ratio, it’s the situation. Always running out of shotgun and then pass against a team ranked last in the league in rushing defense but pretty good against the pass. Of course Green Bay was going to pass the ball….. do you see the Saints secondary? And of course NO was going to pass…. you have Drew Brees as your QB and your down 14pts on the road…. duh. The issue isn’t the ratio is just against SOME opponents you need to be balance. Against others, you can fire away. Andy wants to fire away against everyone and that’s the criticism.

  • Mancini — do you have to start every blog with “as paulman stated earlier” or “as paulman predicted two weeks ago” — stfu. You’re an idiot. You don’t predict anything.

    BTW — how’s that phillies 92 wins second place NL East looking for ya?

  • Scorp – good points. Though I don’t think Andy want’s to fire away against everyone exclusively. Shady had some nice rushing yards last year and he had to have earned them some way. I think that will increase this year as Andy, and the world, now knows how great Shady is. Plus with an improved Oline potentially (yeah, I said that, I believe this will be a better Oline than last year’s for the majority of this season), and Ronnie Brown/DLew….I think it will be decreasingly valid for people to criticize the ratio/balanced playcalling this year. But that’s just my opinion.

  • schiller, for the record, I don’t really have a big problem with the run/pass ratio. My only criticisms are if they are going to run, just do it and stop trying to fool everyone and run out the shotgun when they do and be able to pick up short yards when needed. And run against those opponents with known weakness against the run. I’ll never forget Andy having McNabb out there throwing the ball 50+ times in the wind against the Bengals and Raiders when they both were dead last against the run. Other then that, I can care less. But sometimes the criticism is warranted.

  • schiller, I hope you’re right about this year. We will just have to see. I think a good passing game is more vital in today’s game and there is less of a need for that 100 yard rusher than it use to be. But I do also think that the good teams that win are able to do it both ways when necessary. Like the Packers destroyed ATL and Pitts in the passing game last year because that was where their matchups were but they ran more effectively against us because of our weakness there. I just think at some point good teams can beat you more than one way and adjust accordingly and sometimes it’s painful to watch our team continually pass the ball when protection is bad, Vick isn”t recognizing blitzes and our receivers are covered. And it seems like it’s more than we won’t do it rather than we can’t. This Oline looks to be much better running blocking than passing at this point.

  • It’s only 1 game, but the Pack are scary good. Thank God, I bet the over! What an exciting opener! WOW! To all you knuckle heads, have a good weekend. We’ll will converse again, on Monday.
    Prediction- 27-20W. Go Birds!

  • scorp, the saints DB’s were average before last night. They are terrible and the 1st round pick from a couple of years ago Robinson from Florida St looked lost. I agree both offenses were explosive but BOTH teams had O-line issues. the saints did their best eagles impression on the untimed play and the Packers had blitz pickup issues. turk mcbride of all people had constant pressure and their 1st rd pick derek sherrod was inactive because he also isn’t ready. I guess we agree on some points but overall, the eagles O can be just as explosive and neither one of those teams last night looked totally dominant. On another note, paulman and his 3rd person references are soo weak. lol

  • Scorp I definitely agree sometimes the critcism is warranted. My was always about running westbrook up the middle early in his career – it worked 5% of the time, and he kept doing it inneffectively. He wasn’t an inside the tackles runner then (and really was never unless the oline was opening gaping holes). And Reid didn’t have quality backups that could do it then either…(years buckhalter wasn’t on the team).

    We”ll have to see what the Oline looks like. Who knows what will happen with everything beyond Peters – all new guys at that spot – we know nothing at all about this oline right now. Good or bad, just nothing.

  • also Paulman since you are still patting yourself on the back, can you remind me about your Phillies prediction again?

  • Green bay went away from the pass once the Saints adjusted with putting 2 safeties back. Reid would of still kept trying to go down field . In his words “Just keep firing”.

  • reed, I don’t fully disagree with you but I just think it’s silly to claim the Packers defense has more problems than us when they were playing one of the best offenses in the league. I do agree they have their problems as everyone else but to simply claim they have more based on last night’s game is crazy especially when we haven’t played an important game as of yet and not playing an explosive team this week. That’s my disagreement with you. Hard to really see how bad a defense is if they are playing against of the best offenses in the league. Only elite defenses play well against great offenses and they certainly are not elite. But neither are we.

  • ozzman, that’s exactly the criticism right there. Reid would not adjust to defensive changes often especially if that means getting away from the passing game. He might do it for a couple plays but he’ll get back to throwing the ball no matter what and rely on heroic efforts from the QB to bail him out. Been like that since he’s been here. Now hopefully he will change a little as schiller said with a Shady and Ronnie Brown.

  • schiller, I agree about what you said about Westbrook in the early years, but that’s Reid choice to not have a viable backup who is able to run between the tackles. He didn’t want that. He wanted a dual threat RB. We can’t put the blame on the not having the personnel and admonish Reid. After all, he picks the personnel. He drafts and picks up players according to what he wants to do with his team. If we didn’t have the personnel it’s because he didn’t want it.

  • And you’re right, we don’t know exactly what the oline will do. I hope they do well. But we saw the problems in the preseason and the fact that people were shuffled around so late means they weren’t confident in the guys that they had in there. Having said that, that’s understandable given the short offseason and Watkins not in camp as soon as it opened, new coaching scheme etc. So while that is understandable it’s quite clear there were issues there. I do expect them to get better as they play. But how much better will be determined.

  • Hi guys!

    Nearly everyone knows my stance. I disagree that the pass/run ratio is overrated, although I believe that play-calling is more critical than the ratio.

    Some passes are meant to draw the defense toward the line of scrimmage, others toward the sidelines, others away from the line of scrimmage, and still other meant to open up other plays, including running plays.

    The way in which passes are called is critical. For example, one can’t call 20 consecutive 5-7 step drop passes, because the defense will tee off on the QB and progressively send more blitzes.

    I think weighing the pass-run ratio over-simplifies things.

    It’s a looooong season, and one game does not a season make. Green Bay barely made the playoffs last year and this year they’ve got a bulls-eye on their backs. It makes a huge difference. That’s why there are no repeat champions anymore. With that said, because of the lockout, I believe Green Bay has a better shot than other recent champions.

    Recognizing that I’ve been wrong in the past and could be wrong now, there you have it, my two cents.

  • Regarding Westbrook and Reid’s running strategy, I am reminded of the 3-headed monster: Duce Staley, Brian Westbrook and Correll Buckhalter.

    Our running game was diversified! Buckhalter has size, speed and elusiveness. While Westbrook was a home-run hitter. And Staley pounded the ball, softening defenses and closing out tight games. It was awesome!

    We all know the rest of he story. And thus begun my dislike of Reid, who went on to become (in my opinion) the QB killer.

  • Look..green bay looked good but let’ not sleep on the eagles.

    One of our biggest issues playing against them have been solved.

    With our improved offensive line Matthews will be stopped when he comes off the right side…and the MUDD machine will be in rare form as Andy coach his brand of smash mouth, mono on mono, blue collar football.

    Green Bay who?

  • Drummer, it’s not a long season. It’s 16 games, & 1 game can be the difference between making or not making the playoffs. Especially if it’s an inner conference loss. But I agree with all your other points. Good post. At least someone else on here sees the yin & yang of things.

  • 2 things. those 23 and 20 runs are still more than what we do, most teams do not have Rodgers or a Brees to pass like that. dumb asses

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