2012 NFL Week 9 Recap, Analysis: Green Bay Packers vs. Arizona Cardinals
Although my score prediction was relatively close for this Sunday’s matchup between the Green Bay Packers and Arizona Cardinals, I will have to concede that the Cards played much better than I expected. Real shame about that Aaron Rodgers guy, though.
The Cardinals just can’t seem to get anything going on offense. It really is hard to watch. Early on they were plagued by poor offensive line play, which resulted in three and outs galore, and one seriously pissed quarterback. To make matters worse. Doucet alone had three drops in the first half, and that’s to say nothing of the other receivers.
Can’t believe I’m saying this, but can Skelton get a little help?
Floyd continues to take his sweet time developing after being the second highest WR picked in the draft, far too much is being asked of Stephens-Howling resulting in little relief in the way of a running game worthy of respect, and the offensive line has surrendered a league high 41 sacks this season. That’s not a typo.
On the bright side Andre Roberts continues to impress, and Stephens-Howling is actually playing quite well for a third-string hobbit esque running back forced into a tough spot due to injury. Not like he’s getting much in the way of blocks, and gained a lot of his yards after contact, including a beautiful one yard scamper to keep the Cards in it. Sorry Cards fans, Tom Brady couldn’t get much going behind this offensive line, let alone Skelton. Worst part is I don’t think I’m being even the least bit hyperbolic...
The defense played quite well, I thought. They were left on the field for way too long, and had to defend some incredibly short fields due to the 45 shanks off the boot of Zastudil, and the terribly short drives by the Cards offense. The inside pass rush was great early on, pressuring Rodgers, and leading to a sack by the dynamic duo of Campbell and Dockett. Coverage downfield was also great early on, and Rodgers had to call his own number frequently; the Cards of course struggled to contain the explosive quarterback, and surrendered quite a few first downs this way.
Underrated cornerback William Gay made his first interception as a Cardinal at the beginning of the second quarter to keep the game tight, but after that it was all Rodgers, and the Green Bay offense. The defense seemed to tire out in the third and at points looked completely lost out there. Randall Cobb and James Jones were just unstoppable, reminding the Cardinals just how deep their receiving corps is following the loss of Nelson early in the game. This defense is elite, but the lopsided time of possession and great Green Bay field position made it impossible for them to hang in there.
You have to applaud the Cardinals for hanging in there, sort of, but the tale of two seasons continues to take a turn for the worse. Their offense was in a complete state of disarray, even with improved play by Skelton. Their special teams only seemed to magnify the short drives that never seemed to go anywhere, and didn’t put them in a good position to start drives either. To say Zastudil had a bad day would be somewhat of an understatement, and Peterson looked so very average returning punts. The defense played well early on, but got no help be it from special teams or offense. Worst of all for the defense, they lost a valuable piece in Schofield, and with Atlanta next up they’re gonna need all the help they can get.