Monday, November 14, 2011

Defense Finally Delivers in Viking Drubbing

That was the performance we've all been waiting for from the Packers' defense this year -- constant pressure, creative blitzes, three sacks (two by Matthews), an interception, forced fumble and multiple 3-and-outs.  Woodson was a beast with 8 tackles, two blocked passes, and two near interceptions -- one of which he would have taken to the house.  If not for Randall Cobb's muffed punt (we'll give him a break since he already spotted us 6) it probably would have been a shut-out performance.

A new use for the Viking horn.
This was the defense we became accustomed to seeing last year, but was off to a slow start through the first half of the season.  Could this be the turning point after which we can expect to see this kind of defense on a consistent basis?  It's difficult to say against a wobbly offense with a rookie starting QB.  But even Adrian Peterson, the Vikings only real weapon these days, was held to only 51 yards rushing.  Meanwhile, the offense was obscene, as usual.

At the very least, we could be ushering in an era of dominance over the Vikings.  We may have finally found a convenient use for that tiresome horn on the side of their helmets -- all the easier to manhandle them by.  If they just added a cup holder and a remote control caddy to the Vikings' helmets, they could become the perfect couch accessory.

The Packers' dominant win came against a backdrop of mediocrity this week.  The Lions embarrassed themselves with 6 turnovers against the Bears.  With Jahvid Best out they can't run, and Matthew Stafford apparently has an injured finger.  The Eagles' season is over.  After losing to the Cardinals at home to drop to 3-6, and potentially losing Vick for a few weeks to two broken ribs, you can stick a fork in that bird.  The 49ers appear to be legit, but it's hard to give them too much credit -- after all, they play in the atrocious NFC West and two of their most impressive wins (on the road against the Lions and Eagles) maybe weren't that impressive after all.  The Saints are good, but any team that can lose to the Rams can't be that good -- plus we have the tie break against them.  That leaves the Giants and Cowboys in the NFC East -- two teams the Packers owned last year.

There are still 7 games left, so it's too early to start speculating about the post-season too much.  Look at the Houston Texans -- with Matt Shaub done for the year, they could quickly drop from the #1 seed in the AFC over the remaining weeks.  Always best to take it one week at a time as the Packers are preaching.  But a convincing win tonight makes me optimistic that things are going exactly according to plan.

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