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Cheese Curds, 9/19: Breaking down Rodgers' and Randall's bad nights in Minnesota

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A pair of Green Bay's stars - one a veteran and one a second-year player thrust into the spotlight - flopped on the big stage on Sunday night.

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Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

It was one of those nights for the Green Bay Packers. In a way, it felt a bit like a game at the old Metrodome in the 1990s, when playing in Minnesota was a recipe for disaster for the Green and Gold. The offense never found its stride and the defense got picked apart with a single matchup despite the valiant efforts of the bulk of the unit.

Central to the team's woes were its quarterback and top cornerback. While Aaron Rodgers continued to look uncomfortable and rushed in the pocket, Damarious Randall was getting beaten with regularity by the Vikings' Stefon Diggs. Breaking down those two players' performances can really tell you all you'll need to know about what happened on Sunday night.

Still, the Packers are 1-1 after two tough road games, and they will now look ahead to a nice long stretch at home - more than a month in fact, as they play four straight at Lambeau Field with the bye week sandwiched in that period. If they are worse than 4-2 by the end of that period, then you can start panicking, but each one of those games appears to be very winnable at this point.

Now's the time for Packers to get going |
There are two ways to look at the Packers' start: either they have looked abysmal in two winnable games and lucked into a victory in week one, or they had a tough pair of road games and fell in a close game to last year's division champ. As always, the truth is probably somewhere in the middle, but there will be more excuses with the schedule moving forward.

Green Bay Packers, Aaron Rodgers struggle in loss to Minnesota Vikings - ESPN
On passes more than 10 yards downfield, Rodgers threw a completion just 27% of the time on Sunday. That's not going to get it done.

Packers at Vikings Grades | NFL Week 2 | PFF
Ew. Rodgers was just 1 of 5 for -6 yards when pressured last night and his yards per attempt was just 5.8. Meanwhile, the defensive front did their job but was let down by the secondary - Damarious Randall in particular.

Shields' absence means long night for Randall |
Despite his coaches and teammates heaping praise on him this week, Randall failed to live up to the lofty expectations placed on him. He cited the timing between Sam Bradford and Stefon Diggs as the biggest issue, interesting since the two have only been together for two weeks.

'Everybody plays a part' in protection issues |
T.J. Lang is now the team's longest-tenured linemen, and as such he speaks for the unit. He noted that he and his linemates need to hold their blocks longer, knowing that Rodgers is at his best when extending plays with his legs.

Mike Zimmer: Adrian Peterson's knee injury thought to be minor |
Although the Vikings running back could not put weight on his right leg when leaving the field Sunday night, the expectation now is that there is no structural damage. That could be confirmed by an MRI this morning.