Sunday, September 25, 2011

Packers handle Bears, 27-17

The Green Bay Packers are sitting atop the NFC North at 3-0 after beating Da Bearz 27-17 in Chicago today. Yes, Detroit is also 3-0. Wait...wha-a? Detroit? Well, yes, but this isn't about the up and coming Lions. This story is about the defending Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers.

For all who saw this game -- which was most of the national TV audience -- the game was like a visit to the dentist: it's something that gets done, might hurt in the process, but has a positive outcome. That's how this was. The Packers had moments of real brilliance, particularly early on offense. QB Aaron Rodgers focused most of his early passes on WR Greg Jennings who had a career high 9 receptions for 113 yards. RB Ryan Grant also looked very good today and had some strong runs, finishing with 92 yards on 17 carries. A good day. On defense, the Pack generated some turnovers -- had one INT overturned because of a roughing the QB penalty -- and held RB Matt Forte to either 4 yards or 2 yards rushing depending upon whose numbers you accept. If memory serves, it's the lowest rushing total for a Bears team -- QB Jay Cutler had 11 yards, by the way -- since 1952 (someone can fact check that if they wish). The defense did what it needed to do.

The play calling by head coach Mike McCarthy seemed to be more conservative as the game went on, resulting in the Packers keeping Da Bearz in the game. Ill-timed penalties also cut drives short.

Against a better team, the Packers might have come out of a game like this with a loss. But against this Chicago team, even a so-so outing by the Pack is good enough. The Packers still haven't clicked on all cylinders. When they do, they are going to be something to see. They may not be perfect, but they are a perfect 3-0. And in the big scheme of things, that's the kind of perfection that matters.