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The Jeff Falconio Blog

Packers-Rams: Early analysis

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Meet the new Aaron Rodgers, same as the old Aaron Rodgers.  While #12 may not be able to get back to 2011 form week in and week out he certainly has been impressive these past two weeks.  And he has done so with a weak running game and an offensive line that is still a bit spongy.  Rodgers has also lit up two of the better secondaries in the NFL.


So all things considered, that Colts debacle is officially in the rear view mirror.


But it wasn't all about Rodgers.  Jordy Nelson is another guy who is getting back to 2011 form.  Randall Cobb continues to impress and you love to see a guy take advantage of the opportunities given to him. 


What really stood out were the two touchdown drives of the second half.  At the half the Packers led 10-6.  Even though the Rams aren't a strong offensive team a four point lead is nothing.  So the Packers open up the way they should, with a lengthy drive that consisted of three third down conversions.  Rodgers connected for 7-7 on that drive and just like that almost half of the third quarter was gone and the Packers were up by 11.


But they weren't out of the woods just yet.  Sure enough the Rams have just enough punch to make it a one score game with nine minutes left.  Here's where games are won or lost.  A three-and-out is deadly.  A field goal is good but doesn't deliver the dagger.  The Packers needed another statement drive.  This time Rodgers went 4-5 and connected with Cobb on a beautiful 39 yard strike.  Now the game is won.  This certainly wasn't a blowout but those two drives were more than enough to keep the Rams at arm's length.


This wasn't the prettiest effort to be sure but style points aren't needed in the NFL.  Alex Green mustered just 35 yards on 20 carries with 15 coming on one run.  Take that away and he had only 20 yards on 19 carries.  But in the end that didn't matter.  Rodgers wasn't running for his life but that offensive line did give up three sacks.  St. Louis can deliver some heat so giving up those three sacks wasn't inexcusable.  However, all three came in the first half.  Rodgers stayed upright in the second half and that enabled the Packers to score on four of their first five second half possessions.  Again, not the best effort but it wasn't needed.


After a rough second half in Indianapolis the Packers have turned their season around and now head home to face two teams with issues of their own.  The table is set for a four game winning streak heading into the bye week and that's pretty much where the Packers want to be after a 2-3 start to the year.

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