How do we describe this win other than sweet? It wasn’t ugly, that’s for sure. It wasn’t really pretty either. I guess the best way to describe it was good enough. In the end I think it was a good snapshot of the season. It was pretty good overall, but some rough spots but the Packers overcame them and put in a pretty good performance overall.
Unlike many of the previous weeks there are some great nominees for MVP who put in strong performances all day long against the Bears. I also expect a healthy debate on who is actually the MVP with more than one of the Packers superstars putting in a great day.
Let’s meet the nominees:
QB Aaron Rodgers – It’s not just the stats that Rodgers put up, although they are impressive (23/36 291 YDS 3 TD’s 116.3 RTG), but rather just how many unbelievable plays he was able to put together. More than once Rodgers stood in the pocket for an age, shook tackle, rolled to the right and hit a receiver down the field for a big play. There are only a few QB’s in the league who can make a play like that…maybe only Ben Roethlesburger and Rodgers. Rodgers showed why he should be an MVP candidate this past week and why the Packers are always a Super Bowl contender with him at the helm.
OLB Clay Matthews – We missed you Clay. Matthews by himself put up as many sacks on Sunday as the Packers have the previous three weeks. He also hit Jay Cutler two additional times and was a critical force in stopping the run. Really Matthews was a one man front seven and was a major reason why the Packers were able to completely shut down the Bears’ offense for the final three quarters of the game.
WR James Jones – If this was Lambeau Field they probably would have had to stop the game to pick up the hats thrown on the field once Jones caught his third TD. Jones turned in a pretty good day with five catches for three touchdowns….probably could have been four touchdowns if Jones catches that short slant pass early in the game. This is just a quibble though, really Jones showed once again that he is a quality number two receiver who is able to take apart lesser corners in this league.
CB Sam Shields – When it came down the stretch the Bears tested Shields, who was covering Alshon Jeffery, again and again. Each time Shields was either in position to make the stop or Jeffry was pushing off of Shields and drawing an offensive pass interference call. The defense held time and time again when put in questionable situations late in the game…Shields was a big reason why they were able to hold.
WR Randall Cobb – Cobb had a pretty effective day. He was once again the main target for Rodgers, but not getting an unreasonable amount of targets. Cobb also made the most of his opportunities with 6 catches and 115 yards. He just didn’t get the touchdown passes this week.
CB Casey Hayward – Hayward generally had a good day. Not many passes came his way, but he did get his sixth pick of the year and his first interception off of Jay Cutler, and knowing Hayward’s ball skills and Cutler’s record against the Packers it was probably the first of many interceptions. Hayward’s interception turned the tide of the game and put the Packers ahead. The main reason he is not up the rest of the nominees is because he also got totally owned by Brandon Marshall on Marshall’s TD….being pushed into the ground like a rag doll.
There is one more player that will probably get some buzz for MVP, and he probably should, but I’m holding him in my back pocket for Working Class Hero of the Week. But if you think someone put in a performance worthy of an MVP nomination that is missing feel free to make you case in the comments section. Lots of candidates to choose from so I’m expecting some nominations this week.