JEFF: Much To Be Thankful For
By Jeff Falconio
Having digested a full plate of football, I've come up with a few things Packers fans should be thankful for in the aftermath of the 37-26 win over Detroit. The obvious choice is the ageless wonder Brett Favre, who once again proved that he can still fling the ball around as well as anyone at any time in the history of football. But there have been others who contributed greatly, not just to this win but also to this magical run the Packers are on:
Donald Driver. 10 catches for 147 yards against the Lions. With all the talent Detroit has offensively, it was Driver who made the most noise, solidifying the fact that he belongs among the elite receivers in the NFL. Anytime the offense needs a jumpstart, it's usually Driver who provides the jumper cables.
Ryan Grant. At one point, the Packers had run 35 plays and 31 of them were passes. The running game was nowhere to be found. Grant's numbers were paltry until late in the third quarter. However, in the fourth quarter, when the Packers needed first downs to maintain control of the game, Grant delivered. He gained 47 yards on the crucial drive that led to Mason Crosby's field goal that put the game out of reach. With Grant in the fold the Packers have a reliable runner they can lean on as the temperture drops in the final month of the season.
Aaron Kampman. A big part of Green Bay's success this year has been the defensive line. The Packers have shut down a number of franchise running backs while applying waves of pressure to opposing quarterbacks. Kampman's two sacks on Jon Kitna was proof of that.
Tramon Williams. Aside from being part of the special teams upgrade in 2007, Williams has spearheaded a group of young defensive backs that provide great depth to the secondary. With Charles Woodson out with an injury, Wiliams filled in with excellent coverage.
It's great having Brett Favre but it's even better when Favre has a tremendous supporting cast. Offense, defense, and special teams were all on display in Detroit. Better yet, the Packers are 10-1 and firmly in control in the NFC North. That's plenty to be thankful for.