The Packers had a simple choice when they went to Houston. They could either continue to play the same Jekyll-and-Hyde Act that put them in a big hole against the 49ers and cost them the Colts game, or they could play a full 60 minutes. They chose the second option.
Turns out, it's really easy to win a football game. It involves your starting QB performing at an amazing level for the entire game, the receivers catching almost every pass thrown their way, the run defense sealing every gap and making life extremely difficult for one of the best RBs in the business. As always, it helps when the opposing team screws up, but this game was very clearly a Green Bay game and they would not be denied after a horrific loss a week earlier.
It's safe to say the Houston Texans faced three opponents this past Sunday night: the turf of Reliant Stadium, theGreen Bay Packers, and...themselves. Nothing went right for the Texans in pass coverage. Simply nothing. AndAaron Rodgers took complete advantage of it, finishing the day with 6 touchdown passes and taking the NFL lead in that category (Philip Rivers made a run at it the next night but touchdowns to the other team are technically what you're supposed to avoid).
The first impact play of the game: Jordy Nelson's Pylon Pursuit Pays Off, Puts Packers Up 7-0.
Easy call, obviously. This play occurred immediately after Houston committed a devastating 5-yard penalty on 4th and 3. Aaron Rodgers, given a fresh set of downs, drops back and fires down to a streaking Jordy Nelson, who flat-out beats Johnathan Joseph in coverage and makes it to the pylon for a quick 6.
Impact Play #2: NO 3RD DOWN CONVERSION FOR YOU!
Houston got off to a hasty start on their next drive, and faced a 3rd and 6 situation from their own 33. Given the rather shaky play of Green Bay's secondary to date, a stop on this possession was absolutely pivotal for Green Bay maintaining the momentum.
Enter Jerel Worthy.
Worthy beats his man (who ends up on the turf and whiffing on a futile holding attempt) and brings down Schaub. This immediately killed any momentum the Texans had from the early strike to James Casey on their first play of this drive.
Impact Play #3: 3rd and 1? Go Deep to Tom Crabtree. Wait...
Really, what do you call on 3rd and 1 when your running game has been decent? Mike McCarthy doesn't do what anyone expects (least of all, the entire Houston secondary). Rodgers takes the snap, rolls right, and lofts the pass to a wide-open TE for the score.
Unfortunately, Rodgers gets demolished while throwing the ball. Fortunately, Tom Crabtree was so wide open that all Rodgers had to do was throw it in his general direction. Glover Quin doesn't stand a chance of catching Crabtree. He knows it. Crabtree knows it. Any momentum Houston had from their 65-yard TD drive just a few moments earlier was gone.
Impact Play #4: Is This A Dagger Which I See Before Me?
I'll give Matt Schaub credit. His pocket is collapsing, Clay Matthews is bull-rushing the LT right into his face, and he has to get rid of the ball. A man appears to be open...but Schaub finds only the arms of Sam Shields, who cuts off the receiver's route and comes away with the football, all but slamming the door on Houston's comeback efforts. A James Jones TD just four plays later put things out of reach for good.
With the much needed win, the Packers improved to 3-3. They have a chance to pull above .500 this coming week with a win over the St. Louis Rams in the Edward Jones Dome.