In the NFL, a win is a win and a loss is a loss.
In a game few fans or media outlets thought they could win, the Green Bay Packers did exactly what it took to win. It wasn't stylish or sexy, but it was a win over one of the consensus favorites in the AFC.
To say the game assuaged the fears of the Packer nation however, is a completely different story. The offense was shaky, the ground game was nearly invisible (81 yards) and the Pack's best offensive weapon is kicking footballs for a living.
Aaron Rodgers threw for 170 yards and no touchdowns, but seemed to be making better decisions with the ball. He threw plenty of balls away, and shied away from visits to Revis Island. He didn't throw any interceptions, but the offense lacked any of their usual spark.
In truth, it was much more a defensive contest than anyone was really expecting. With the deplorable state of the Green Bay defense, the job they did today was remarkable to say the least. The highly touted return of LaDainian Tomlinson was put on hold for a week, as he only managed 54 yards on 16 carries. The Packers D also wrestled three turnovers from the Jets in a very aggressive showing from the injury-ridden team.
The Jets defense did not exactly play up to par, thanks in part to an efficient Green Bay offense designed to play underneath the coverage and get the ball out of Rodgers' hands quickly. The Jets did still get to the quarterback a total of seven times with two sacks. Protection continues to be worrisome for the Packers, but it could have been a lot worse against a defense of this caliber.
Perhaps what is most surprising for many people is that the Packers out-coached New York. Savor that feeling, Green Bay, because you won't be able to confidently say that often. Green Bay worked matchups against Revis and Cromartie beautifully. The defense disguised looks and effectively shut down everything New York threw at them, especially in the red zone.
Green Bay is far from out of the woods. The Packers have won two close games in a row, and besides helping them out in the conference standings, it has to be a major confidence boost. It's not to say there aren't questions regarding an aging and battered offensive line, penalties and a complete lack of depth.
However, perhaps there is something to playing with a chip on your shoulder. The answers will come out through the end of the season, and perhaps things will get even sharper as the walking wounded come back to the front lines.
For now, just relax and take in the victory. No matter how it comes in the NFL, a win is a win.