Divisional battles never quite go the way you think they will. The teams know each other very well. The Green Bay Packers knew they’d be in a fight with the Minnesota Vikings, Sunday. They didn’t know their defense wouldn’t show up in a 34-31 defeat.
It was a complete reversal of how the season has been going to this point. It’s been the 3rd ranked defense of the Packers that has carried the team. The offense has done just enough to help. Not the case against the Vikings.
After a sputtering start, (that included another missed field goal by Mason Crosby) Green Bay found a groove against Minnesota’s defense. For the first time since Week 5, the Packers offense put up more than 24 points.
With the way the defense has been playing, you’d think 31 points would be enough to seal the deal. It wasn’t. Green Bay’s defense was always going to be challenged by Minnesota’s offense. I said as much on Quick TO:SS. I didn’t expect them to let guys like Justin Jefferson run free all over the yard.
Packers were able to make some critical stops, but it’s the stops they didn’t make, that cost them a victory. Multiple chances at intercepting Kirk Cousins, squandered. Inability to make sure tackles to keep players from picking up first downs, egregious. Not being aware of who to cover in zone situations, inexcusable.
Green Bay’s defense was due for a hiccup. They’ve been stellar for most of the season, you have to expect a clunker or two. The only good thing to take from this game is, hopefully, the offense has found their 2020 selves.
It doesn’t get any easier in Week 12. A playoff rematch against the Los Angelos Rams, at Lambeau, awaits the Pack. All three phases must come ready to produce, in order to avoid a losing streak, and losing ground in the race for the top seed in the NFC. The stakes are building.