Packers vs. Bengals: thoughts

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Packers vs. Bengals: thoughts
Here are some off-the-cuff, knee jerk reactions to the Green Bay Packers' performance against the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night Footbal that might not have registered on everyone's radar screen:

Thumbs up:
  • Aaron Rouse -- Another interception proved why Rouse needs to be in the starting lineup. The team might go through a couple headaches as Rouse gets used to defending against complex NFL offenses, but his knack for generating turnovers offsets any negatives he might have. Three interceptions last season combined with one last night and one in the team's preseason scrimmage prove that he can help the team. At least Nick Collins can be the most reliable backup safety in the league.
  • Jason Hunter -- Hunter led the team in sacks last night and was second on the team in tackles. While not spectacular, he just showed he was very active and is probably worth keeping around another season as a backup defensive lineman and key special teams contributor. He may even get snaps that KGB doesn't while recovering from a knee injury. And did you notice that Hunter even took some snaps at defensive tackle while filling in at a thin position?
  • Brennan Carvalho -- The undrafted rookie center is making the most of his oppotunity. With both Scott Wells and Junius Coston sitting out with injuries, Carvalho is the top backup at center to starter Jason Spitz. He also paved the way for Kregg Lumpkin's touchdown with a nice block on a screen pass. His body needs some work, but he's working his way on up.

Thumbs down:

  • Chris Francies -- Two drops, one of which led to Aaron Rodgers' only interception, has Francies on the outside looking in. The drop that led to the interception was clearly Francies' fault when it bounced off of him into the air. With Greg Jennings sitting the game out due to injury, Francies got limited opportunities to play with the first string offense. He only hurt his chances to stick around.
  • Conrad Bolston and Alfred Malone -- No one is expecting defensive tackles to be tackling machines, but the backup duo combined for exactly one tackle during the preseason opener. At such a thin position, they did very little to distinguish themselves.
  • Vernand Morency -- It wasn't Morency's fault, but why didn't he get any opportunities to carry the ball? Only the coaching staff can answer that question. Maybe they know what they have with him while they want to give chances to guys like DeShawn Wynn and Kregg Lumpkin. But if Morency makes the team as the third down back, don't you want to give him at least a handful of carries to help him prepare?
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