Green Bay Packers Keep Train Rolling

Tim SeemanAnalyst ISeptember 14, 2008

Now, I've been an Aaron Rodgers fan from the beginning of the Favre fiasco. I never questioned Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy and I always had confidence that Rodgers would manage the games and not make killer mistakes.

But no one could have predicted that Aaron Rodgers would come out and be one of the best quarterbacks in the whole league. With a little defensive help late in the game (OK, a lot of defensive help), Rodgers moved his career record as starter to 2-0.

This had all the potential to be one of those "tale of two halves" games. Rodgers and the big-block, V8, 480-horsepower Packer offense was firing on all cylinders in the first half, shredding and torching and embarrassing the hapless Detroit defense.

When Detroit had the ball, receivers were dropping passes on third down, they couldn't run the ball, and they couldn't keep Aaron Kampman or AJ Hawk off of Jon "It's a Miracle" Kitna.

It was the exact opposite in the second half. James Jones, Greg Jennings, and Donald Driver all had passes slipping through their fingers or bouncing off their chests. Rodgers scrambled all across the field and Ryan Grant was bottled up.

Calvin Johnson got behind coverage and was running past Charles Woodson and company with ease. Detroit opened the second half with a 22-3 run and took a 25-24 lead with just over seven minutes remaining in the game.

Green Bay took the lead back on a field goal, but Kitna had the ball in position to lead the underdog Lions to a big come-from-behind upset against a division rival.

That's when somebody restored order to the universe.

Charles Woodson intercepted a ball that led to a 19-yard touchdown run by Brandon Jackson. Then Woodson intercepted another ball, and instead of burdening the offense, he just took the ball into the end zone himself.

And as Ford Field was emptying, Kitna sealed it by throwing another pick-6 for Packers safety Nick Collins. 

The final score was 48-25.  A blowout, just as it should've been for the whole game.

Moving on to a big, early season showdown with Dallas, Green Bay needs to work on a few things. For one, they need Ryan Grant to get going. 

Quick, name one impact player that the Packers needed to worry about in the running game.

Trick question; there are no impact players on the Lions defense. But there are a lot of impact players for Dallas, and the Packers will need Grant to take some pressure off Rodgers.

The offense and defense also need to find a way to drive final nails into coffins in the third quarter. Detroit might as well have been on the field all by themselves during their comeback.

Hopefully, the lapses in intensity Green Bay had today are a result of the environment and the team they were playing. Hopefully, in big games at Lambeau Field against good teams like Dallas and Indianapolis (hint, hint), the Packers will be able to play at their best for four quarters.

And, if Green Bay plans on making a Super Bowl run, they won't be playing any teams like Detroit during the playoffs. That is something we can predict.