Packers-Eagles: First half observations
For a second straight week the game plan goes out the window on the opening drive as Seneca Wallace left the game with a groin injury. However, Scott Tolzein seemed to get comfortable as the first half wore on and even exuded some confidence on the final drive of the half.
As expected, we saw a steady diet of Eddie Lacy and as long as the score remains close expect to see Lacy continue to pound on the ground.
It's worth noting the Packers held the ball for 21 minutes in the first half. As I've said before I'm not a big believer in that stat because it's what you do with it that counts and three points after 21 minutes isn't much bang for the buck. But with a physical runner in Lacy, who seems to get stronger as the game goes on, the Packers can wear down Philadelphia's defense if it's close.
You'll notice I keep using the caveat "if it's close." We're still talking about a third-string quarterback in Tolzein and the Packers simply couldn't capitalize on two deep drives into the red zone. Will that change in the second half?
Defensively the Packers more or less did what they needed to. No turnovers but two sacks by Datone Jones certainly helped. The Packers also tightened up and did not allow any points after the Tolzein interception.
However, the defense needs to do more than just make stops. A momentum-turning, game-changing takeaway will be necessary. The Packers will also need favorable field position so special teams will come into play. Ultimately though it will come down to Tolzein's ability to finish a drive or two with a touchdown.