The Green Bay Packers 37-20 loss to the New York Giants was an epic choke. At least the ’98 Minnesota Vikings and ’07 New England Patriots won playoff games before gagging. Sure there were Green Bay receivers dropping balls all over the place, and yes I know the Giants scored a freak TD on a Hail Mary going into half time, but this loss falls squarely on the shoulders of Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy.
McCarthy had an awful game. After lucking out and having the fumble by Greg Jennings ruled a non-fumble (more on this later), the Packers scored a TD on the first play of the 2nd quarter. With the score tied 10-10 only 15:06 into the game, McCarthy’s decision to try on onside kick was absolutely asinine. Not because the Packers didn’t recover the kick (although that would have been nice), but because the concept of doing it was flawed to begin with. Green Bay was the favorite, the reigning Champions, and playing at home. That type of surprise play should be reserved for a team that feels they are out manned, one that can’t win playing the game straight up. What kind of message did that send to his team? That they were going to need trickery to win? Lawrence Tynes had his field goal attempt blocked, so the bone head move didn’t equate to any points for the Giants, but that should let McCarthy off the hook.
And to make matters worse, with 13:00 left to go in the game, down just seven points at 20-13, on the Giants 40-yard line, McCarthy went for it on 4th down needing five yards. They play should have gone for a first down as Aaron Rodgers’s throw was off the mark, but again, the play call send in from the coach had faulty logic. With plenty of time left in the game, why not just punt pin the Giants inside their own 10 and play defense? Was McCarthy suggesting that the Packers couldn’t keep the Eli Manning from scoring from his own 10-yard line?
Mike McCarthy really screwed the pooch by playing this game as if the New York Giants were the heavy favorites and the better team. Either that or McCarthy actually thought the Giants were the better team. In which case; maybe he was right?
In any case, Green Bay’s loss was New York’s gain. Great win by the New York Football Giants.
What the hell was going on with the officiating in this game? They couldn’t do simple things like spot the ball correctly. And you didn’t need to be former VP of Officiating, Mike Pereira, to see that Jennings fumbled with 1:40 to go in the 1st quarter. It seems that everyone in the nation realized that it was a fumble after one quick replay except for referee Bill Leavy. What I can’t comprehend is that Leavy was diligent in reviewing the play, yet he still blew the call? What was he watching under the hood, the Golden Globe red carpet coverage?
Note: Weather may be a factor in the Giants vs. 49ers NFC Championship Game next Sunday. The game is scheduled for 6:30pm ET and a special weather statement already has been issued for San Francisco, with heavy rain and high winds in the forecast for the second half of the coming week. The playing surface in Candlestick Park is legendary for having water table problems during football season, and this could prove to be a major factor in the game.
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- The founder and former owner of MC3 Sports Media, Mike Cardano is the Sr. Business Administrator for RotoExperts and the Executive Director here at TheXLog.com. You may email Mike @ email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @MikeCardano. Listen to Mike on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio with Scott Engel and the morning crew Tuesday mornings at 10am ET.