The Green Bay Packers had what I deemed a “foundational win” last week, against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. I called it this because you build upon a foundation. Green Bay had a chance to do this against the New England Patriots on Sunday.
I warned on Quick TO:SS, to not look at the record or, the quarterback, or the inconsistency of the Patriots. Rather, look at who’s coaching them and understand it’s going to be a fight. After a 27-24 overtime victory, I’d say the fight came to fruition.
Offensively the Packers were a mixed bag. The running game, after being shut down by Tampa’s defense a week ago, got back to their dominant ways with 199 yards on the ground. Despite their ability to run the ball down New England’s throat, head coach Matt LaFleur decided he needed to chuck the ball all over the yard with a less than sharp Aaron Rodgers. (Don’t let the stats fool you, he was not on point.) It was only when they were more run heavy on drives, we’re they able to keep the chains moving and come up with critical scores.
Green Bay’s defense was stellar last week. They, too, were able to shut down the run and make life tough for the Buccaneers. This wasn’t quite the case against New England, giving up 167 rushing yards, and couldn’t make 3rd string quarterback Bailey Zappe, uncomfortable whatsoever. (The rook looked WAY too relaxed.) one thing that was the same as last week; the defense’s grit. It wasn’t aesthetically pleasing, it may have aged certain folks watching, but the defense got the stops necessary for victory.
A quarter of the way through the season, the Packers will head to London at 3-1. Nowhere near a finished product and they have their flaws, but they are building.