As a fan of the NFL, I was watching the primetime MNF game featuring the Minnesota Vikings and the New York Giants.
As a fan of the Green Bay Packers, I was watching Josh Freeman.
Week eight brings a tilt that has been brewing since the offseason: Green Bay Packers versus the Minnesota Vikings. I am calling it: The Night Jennings Has No Catches.
Nah, I’m kidding. No, I’m not kidding. Like at all.
But, while a big storyline for the Packers is whether or not Jennings is going to run his big mouth on Sunday night — a recent development has made this matchup even more interesting. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers released QB Josh Freeman on Oct. 3, and it wasn’t long before he was being fitted for his Vikings jersey.
I groaned when I read the news. I am so comfortable playing Christian Ponder twice a year! I did not want the Vikings to make an upgrade at the quarterback position. I was watching him closely on Monday night. I agree with analysts, it was way too soon to put Freeman’s feet to the fire. He had been with the team less than a fortnight, he couldn’t possibly have a grasp of the plays and schemes in time to be competitive Monday.
It felt more like an audition than a real effort. I am sure Freeman showed the coaching staff and the front office that he has something to offer (though I must have missed it). I think they must have genuinely felt like he had a great week of practice in preparation. I don’t know … what I did see, was something that had nothing to do with plays or schemes. I saw overthrows, bad passes, panic in the pocket, and unnecessary punishment.
In short, he was absolutely terrible. His receivers were half-heartedly running deep routes at the end of the game; they just didn’t see the point in putting their whole effort into a clear overthrow. Greg Jennings was on the sidelines shaking his head, I am guessing completely regretting his decision to move in free agency.
After the loss, Leslie Fraizer made it clear that playing Freeman was the correct choice. He also said that Josh would be starting again this week against the Packers. Now, it’s come out that Freeman suffered a concussion Monday night and is very unlikely to play Sunday.
Here’s what I think happened:
1. The coaching staff watched the tape, saw that the throws Freeman was missing had very little to do with plays and more to do with accuracy.
3. They went back and watched the film on the 2013 Green Bay Packers.
4. Got scared.
It’s probably far fetched, and I guess it’s possible that Freeman sustained a concussion, he was like a rag doll all night. However it happened, Packers fans can expect to see Christian Ponder on the field Sunday night. He’s going to be facing a rejuvenated Packers defense, however. With Casey Hayward practicing, finally, we may get to see him make his debut. Wouldn’t that be something? Morgan Burnett, Casey Hayward, Micah Hyde, Tramon Williams, Davon House, Sam Shields — sounds like a good group.
Would sound even better if an ill-prepared, reeling Freeman were getting the nod.