Around The NFC: Where Do The Packers Stand After Two Games?

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 18: Charles Woodson #21 of the Green Bay Packers celebrates after recovering a fumble against the Carolina Panthers during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 18, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

I'm not sure how many people are disappointed that the Green Bay Packers allowed over 400 yards passing to QB Cam Newton, but I'm not. They also forced four turnovers (3 INTs) and made them settle for three field goal attempts. As much as the defense struggled, they also kept them in the game. They faced two big play offenses so far this season, and they've given up some big plays. I don't expect they'll be giving up 400+ yards passing every game for much longer (QB Jay Cutler and the Bears next week). Hopefully they hear good news on the health of S Nick Collins and CB Tramon Williams, and realize it's good to be sitting at 2-0.

Which is a rare spot in the NFC. Only the Packers, Redskins, and the Lions are 2-0 after the first two games. I'm sure that's what everyone was expecting. It's looking like a heck of a battle brewing in the NFC North, with the Packers first divisional game coming up next week at Chicago.

The 2-0 Lions. I'm not really surprised by this start. I'd have been much more surprised if they had started 0-2. The won a close game in Tampa, a place they won at last December too, and they destroyed the free falling Chiefs. Last October, they crushed the Rams 44-6, and then proceeded to lose 6 of their next 7. They're a dangerous team who look better with a healthy Matthew Stafford at quarterback. I didn't expect them to crush the Chiefs by such a high score, but their team is where I expected they'd be.

The 1-1 Bears. I watched them lose to the Saints out of the corner of my eye, and it was an ugly loss. The Bears played tough in the first half. But when Cutler was strip sacked five minutes into the third quarter, it was all over. The stat sheet just can't convey the beating Cutler took in the second half, even after the game was out of reach. However, the Bears let Cutler take just as bad a beating last season, and they still wound up in the NFC Championship game. The Packers offense struggled in all three games against the Bears last season, and it will be a close one next week.

The 0-2 Vikings. Kevin Seifert wrote a great article about how "they are constructed with absolutely no margin of error." After leading 17-0 at half, the Buccaneers rallied in Minneapolis and outscored them 24-3 in the second half. They weren't expected to compete for a playoff berth, and they've shown why so far in their first two games.

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