Archive for November 16th, 2011
The Packers remain as the only undefeated team in the league after successfully crushing the weakening Minnesota Vikings at Lambeau Field for a 7-45 win. This is the biggest winning margin the Packers have put over a rival this season and for the first so far into the tournament the defense was actually an important part of the team’s success. The Pack’s defense had to prove itself after been seriously criticized by the media last week. They almost blew a big lead in the fourth quarter against the San Diego Chargers on their previous game. At the end they held onto a 45-38 win, but it got a bit ugly.
Last week the sports media went on hard about the Green Bay Packers defense. On the one said they had nothing but praises for the Aaron Rodgers and the Packers offense, but they also recognized that despite the perfect record, the defense had many flaws. Suddenly the Packers defense was under fire. Last week, before they faced the Minnesota Vikings on Monday Night Football the Packers defense were ranked 31st in pass defense (299.6 yards per game), 30th in total defense (399.6) and 17th in points per game allowed (22.4). Rumor had it that had it not been for the great moment Rodgers was experiencing the Packers would certainly be far away from a perfect season.
And that’s what got the Packers defense started and all rattled up against the Vikings. They needed to prove that it wasn’t just about the Packers offense, that the defense could actually get their act together and dominate a team like the 2-7 Vikings. Green Bay’s defense came into the game giving up nearly 300 yards passing per game, second-most in the NFL. But it was all going to change on this game. The Packers defense managed to hold down rookie quarterback Christian Ponder to 16 of 34 passing for 190 yards with no touchdown passes and forced an interception. As a matter of fact, the defense held Ponder to a low 52.3 passers rating. They also kept the Vikings star Adrian Peterson from producing more then 51 yards and a touchdown.
The Vikings on the other hand tried its best to slow down Rodgers. They managed to sack him three times and hit him hard every time he took off running. But that still didn’t keep Rodgers from completing 23 of 30 passes for 250 yards and 4 touchdown passes without a single interception. As a matter of fact, including the playoffs, the Packers have won 15 straight games dating back to last season’s 31-27 loss at New England on Dec. 19, 2010. This is actually the longest winning streak in team history.
The Packers will now try to keep on their perfect season when they host the 4-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday November 20th. The Buccaneers are currently third in the NFC South, and have now lost three consecutive games. The Minnesota Vikings on the other hand will try to win it’s third game of the season when they receive the 5-4 Oakland Raiders who currently lead the AFC West.