The Green Bay Packers had yet another costly victory last Sunday over the Baltimore Ravens, 19-17.
In the victory, the Packers lost starting outside linebacker Nick Perry to a broken foot, arguably their best offensive weapons, Randall Cobb to a fractured fibula, and James Jones to a knee sprain. All but Jones’s injury are expected to keep the players out until near the end of the season, making the Packers’ injury situation go from critical to life support.
The injury situation has gotten to the point of nausea for me and I’m now to the point where I refuse to write about the injuries from here on out.
Instead, let’s focus on the things the Packers did well in what was a very impressive road win against the defending Super Bowl champions. Defensively, the Packers put together another solid football game. They held one of the better running backs in the NFL, Ray Rice, to just 34 yards on 14 carries and also held Ravens’ wide receiver Torrey Smith to one catch for 12 yards — Smith was third in the NFL coming into the game in receiving yards.
Offensively, the Packers struggled once again, however, but made enough plays to beat a good football team that sports a dangerous defense. Many fans have been critical of the Packers’ lack of production on the offensive side of the ball, but they should withhold judgment to the end of the season. The Packers are in the midst of a scheme change on offense. They’re clearly shifting from a spread, arial attack, to a well-balanced, power football game. They’ve played only five games, so growing pains are to be expected. The time to worry about the Packers’ offensive production won’t be until December if the production levels stay the same.
To put a bow on the Packers’ big victory over the Ravens, the main takeaway is that they won the game. Not every game is going to be easy, especially on the road against the defending champions. Early in the season, the Packers have showed the heart of a champion and have played inspired football from game one.
Let’s now shift our attention to another AFC North team, the Cleveland Browns.
Here are five things to watch for when the Browns invade Lambeau Field Sunday afternoon.