My biggest concern for the Green Bay Packers entering their game against the Lions was the pass protection. When the Packers lost to the Lions back in December 2010, their offensive line was overwhelmed by the Lions defensive line. It wasn't just Ndamukong Suh as five players recorded hits (8 in total) on the quarterback. On Thanksgiving, the Lions recorded only two.
Things didn't go so well on the right side of the line. RT Bryan Bulaga had maybe his worst game of the season (Cliff Avril recorded a sack against him) and RG Josh Sitton was injured.
But on the left side of the line, LT Marshall Newhouse only allowed one hit on Aaron Rodgers that was nullified by a weak roughing the passer penalty (the refs were equally flag happy on both teams as Greg Jennings drew an equally weak offensive pass interference call on the same play). Overall, Pro Football Focus gave Newhouse a positive grade for the game.
Not every game has gone well for Newhouse (his first start on the right side against the Broncos comes to mind). But I wasn't expecting that he would start eight games this season (so far), and he's done far more good than harm. He's been more consistent than I expected based on his up-and-down play during the previous two preseasons.
Despite the recent rash of injuries, the Packers have missed few games from their starters. Charlie Peprah has started more games (nine) this season in place of Nick Collins, but I'm having my doubts about how effective he's been this season. To have Newhouse step in as the starting left tackle was completely unexpected, and he hasn't slowed the offense down at all.