Green Bay Packers: Team 93 has mettle!


B.J. Raji is helping the Packers earn recognition as one of the toughest teams in all of the NFL. Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports photograph

What is this Green Bay Packers Team 93 about?

Based on a six-game sample, here is how it looks thus far…

Game 1: The Green Bay Packers spent more time on their season-opener preparing against the San Francisco 49ers than any other team on their schedule. They were very disappointed when they ended up losing that game.

However, to most everyone’s surprise, they hung with the 49ers physically, something the Packers brass set out to do, and they did so beginning week 1.

Game2:  Against the Washington Redskins the Packers game plan was for Eddie Lacy to have a big day, but on his very first carry he got hammered by Brandon Meriweather’s helmet and was out for the rest of the game, and the next  as well.

Meriweather yesterday got suspended two games for similar hits.

Enter James Starks who had Lacy’s big day, and played very well. Rookie tackle David Bakhtiari seems to be holding up well and the offensive and defensive lines played physical once again in a Packers (1-1) win.

Game 3: Against the Cincinnati Bengals, Lacy was still out, Starks got the start and proceeds to get hurt; enter Johnathan Franklin. He has another big day for a Packers running back. The offensive and defensive lines neutralize one of the more physical teams in all of football in yet another loss, putting the Packers at 1-2 after three weeks.

Bye week: Lacy gets healthy, instead of feeling sorry for themselves, they stood up, pulled on their cleats, and went back to work.

Game 4: The team was at home against the Lions and Eddie Lacy was back in the lineup. He got the start and ran for 99 yards, breaking a string of two consecutive games where the packers had a 100-yard running back (Starks, Frankin).

The Packers defensive line ate up Reggie Bush and the Lions passing attack, minus Calvin Johnso. However, the Packers lost one of their own superstars in Clay Matthews in the process. The Packers had already lost ILB Brad Jones for a time and Robert Francois for the season.

It was announced at that time that Matthews would be out a minimum a month.

Green Bay, at 2-2 and starting to hurt a little bit, didn’t shrink from their task. Their underlying physical play continued to be a truly amazing thing to watch. They ran at the teeth of the Lions defense and came out on top.

The O-line, along with Andrew Quarless, continued to win the war of the trenches. Defensively, the  line is doing the same thing, but even more so.

Game 5: Several key Packers, including Matthews, are declared out against the host Baltimore Ravens. Green Bay laid the wood once again on one of the most physical teams in all of football. In this game, they lost Randall Cobb, who was declared out until December. James Jones also got hurt and was said to be lost for a few weeks.

Lacy runs for 120 yards on 23 carries. Both lines outplay the reigning Super Bowl champions.

Sep 13, 2012; Green Bay, WI, USA; Green Bay Packers guard Josh Sitton (71) during the game against the Chicago Bears at Lambeau Field. The Packers defeated the Bears 23-10. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

After that win, the Packers stood at 3-2 and were wounded badly because in addition to Cobb and Jones,  Nick Perry also broke his foot and Mike Neal hurt his shoulder. Perry was declared out for weeks and Neal only played half the game the following week.

Game 6: At home against Cleveland. This game was being billed as the team of new faces because Jake Stoneburner, Chris Harper, Nate Palmer, Sam Barrington, Jarrett Boykin, Myles White and Andy Mulumba were all expected (and did) see action and played extensively for the first time in their careers.

There was talk Green Bay had only 44 players healthy against the Browns with six starters out (and they will lose Jermichael Finley in the second half with a bruised spinal cord). The Packers face a top three defense in Cleveland, and once again laid the wood physically on both sides of the ball.

Lacy ran for 82 tough yards on 22 carries, and scored his second touchdown of the season.

Summarizing the season so far after six games: What has been consistent is the physical play of both the offensive and defensive lines, and emergence of a sound running game, specifically Eddie Lacy.

Aaron Rodgers at the controls is also making very smart decisions matched only by Joe Montana. He is making it all function, rewarding those anonymous guys in the trenches who are sacrificing themselves for the good of the team, by winning games.

They could have folded at 1-2 and massive injury loss in the weeks that followed, but the Packers’ way is “next man up” and everyone step up. Out-physical your opponent, and do not accept any excuses.

That is the Packers way, and it sees them in first place and a number three seeding after starting the season 1-2.

This TEAM 93 has moxie, this team has tough guys, unselfish guys and by golly it has it has mettle, too! And lot’s of it.

Green Bay has come out swinging first in every game physically, and their “take no prisoners” approach is how the game is supposed to be played, and boy are they playing it well in the trenches!

Sounds like a Super recipe to me.