For The Packers, No Style Points Necessary
Just take a look at a few of the numbers from the Packers 28-26 win over Detroit: the Lions scored on four straight possessions, held the ball for more than 37 minutes and converted 10 3rd down plays. Yikes. Against most teams those numbers translate into a loss.
But the Detroit Lions aren't like most teams. There's no doubt the Lions are improving but they still find ways to lose. Those four scoring drives were all field goals, including one possession that started at Green Bay's 18 yard line after Jordy Nelson's kickoff fumble. Despite holding the ball a vast majority of the time the Lions were flagged 13 times for 102 yards. We saw on Monday night how devastating penalties can be, especially when you're in control of the game. In the second half the Packers ran 10 plays for only 44 yards before taking over with 6:32 left. Combine the penalties with the lack of second half touchdowns and the Lions found a way to cough it up.
Here's the interesting thing. Much like in the Monday night game, despite how poorly everything looked, the Packers had a chance to win it late. The Packers gained possession of the ball at their own 13 and didn't let Detroit see it again. With the game on the line the Packers did what they had to and passed the gut check. In consecutive games the Packers looked far from their best but could very well be 4-0 right now. Sometimes that's how it works in the NFL. You don't have to be dominant all the time and there will be Sundays when you do just enough to survive.
The problem is for a team with Super Bowl aspirations, you can't just survive at home against a team like Detroit. On Monday night the Packers gave Chicago the chance to win the game and the Bears took advantage. On Sunday the Lions were in position to win but getting field goals instead of touchdowns opened the door just enough for the Packers to take advantage. It remains to be seen if the Packers are elite or ordinary but in the NFL a win is still a win. You take it anyway you can get it and that's what the Packers did with no style whatsoever.