Just finished reading the always incisive and thorough coverage in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and came away with these observations:
-Mike McCarthy is getting roasted for trying a 51-yard field goal on a windy night, knowing that the miss would give the Vikings great field position.
-Aaron Rodgers is getting roasted for holding the ball so long in what is supposed to be a quick-passing offense.
-John Jolly is getting roasted for his head-butt, one of the biggest plays in the game.
-DE Cullen Jenkins is the latest Packer to complain about the defensive scheme of Dom Capers. Jenkins and Kampman are not the same players in Caper''s scheme, which has moved Jenkins and Kampman to different roles than the ones they used to succeed in.
-The talk shows are roasting McCarthy and Ted Thompson, predictably.
My thoughts? I don't disagree with any of the criticisms, and yet I still think the Pack will rally and make the playoffs, and I still like Rodgers as a young quarterback who does indeed need to become more decisive. As one analyst here put it, he waits for receivers to get open instead of ``throwing them'' open, meaning leading them to open areas, or throwing, as Brett Favre does so often, to the side of the body that will keep the ball away from the defender.
Isn't it amazing that when he had Favre, McCarthy was considered a young coaching genius and Brad Childress was considered a dunce, and now that Favre plays for the Vikings they both look like completely different coaches?
A couple of Packers pointed out that every time they prepared for a blitz, Favre pointed it out at the line of scrimmage.
Yes, I have gained more appreciation for Favre's intelligence and gamesmanship with every passing week.
-Looking ahead: Follow me on twitter at Souhanstrib. Still trying to catch the indefatigueable Michael Russo in twitter followers. Russo must be stopped.
Tonight will be a rare night on my couch, being a sports geek, watching Monday Night Football and what I hope is not the last baseball game of the year.
Tomorrow morning, on with Reusse at 6:40 on am-1500, and on wjon at 7:14 a.m.
-Alex Rodriguez is stuck. When he acts like himself, we all hate him. When he tries to be diplomatic, he sounds like a robot. Not a cool, modern, I-Robot robot. Something from Lost in Space. ``I am taking it one game at a time and looking for a good pitch to hit and my battery must be replaced before Game 5.''
-Covering Viking-Packer games in Lambeau has been my favorite recurrent event as a Star Tribune columnist, and yesterday's game was onie of those you feel privileged to witness. The emotion on Favre's face and in Longwell's voice as I talked to him after the game was a reminder of just how human and vulnerable these guys are.
As always, thanks for putting up with me, and remember to eat your vegetables. I like mine deep-fried with butter.