Friday, August 24, 2012

Packers Win A Preseason Game Over The Bengals, 27-13

The second half wasn't pretty for the backups, but that's for a later post. The starters are what's most important, and while there were some concerns, it overall looked like a good warm up for the regular season.

Aaron Rodgers. While he was under center, the offense had possession six times and scored on three drives, which is a pretty good success ratio. Rodgers was doing a bit more running than anyone wants, but he wasn't taking any chances. The Bengals defensive line was over-rushing and finding themselves blocked out of the play, while their secondary was chasing the deep receivers, so Rodgers had a lot of green in front of him.

The big concern was his accuracy. The interception was either a terrible pass or a bad route by the receiver, but he had a few other bad passes too. His accuracy is usually flawless, so showing a few flaws doesn't even make him an average quarterback, but it was unlike him.

Greg Jennings is back from his concussion, and he already looks in mid-season form. That alone was great news.

Cedric Benson had a solid debut, and it looks like he'll be a good addition. His strength is his strength; on a couple delayed hand-offs, he fought through arm tackles to pick up some extra yards. While the first team offense was on the field, Benson played about half the time, splitting the duties with Alex Green, and that might be what to expect if James Starks can't return for the season opener.

The worst QB rating of the game went to Bengals' QB Andy Dalton, which is a great sign for the Packers' defense. They only recorded 2 sacks and 7 QB pressures for the game, but Dalton was constantly harassed as they generated pressure against a good offensive line. Rookies Nick Perry, Jerel Worthy, and Mike Daniels were often involved in the pursuit, and they all seem likely to play key roles this season. The defense did blitz more in this one than the previous two preseason games. CB Tramon Willams did a great job against Bengals star WR A.J. Green, but the other cornerback position seems unsettled as neither Jarrett Bush or Sam Shields played great. Shields was almost beaten badly on a long pass downfield, but Dalton overthrew Green. Still, having Williams back to 100% after a shoulder injury took away his bump-and-run effectiveness last season is a huge boost.

It wasn't pretty, but the preseason is about shaking off the rust. The first team offense and defense outplayed a 2011 playoff team, and while they still have some room for improvement, they look ready for the regular season.

1 comment:

PackFaninFl said...

I'm prepared to "eat crow" or should I say "eat strow" after watching Benson... he looked good! Stroh might be right! I'll still never warm up to Benson given his off the field stuff and being a former Bear. It still irks me to NO END watching McMahon's mug on the sideline as we won the Super Bowl in 1996. Man!

And I think Bush looked pretty darn good! Loved how he made a GREAT tackle on a run blitz play (forget which quarter it was). He is very good and instinctual near the Line of Scrimmage. He also didn't embarrass on any deep pass, his achilles heal. We'll be even better with Bush as our starting CB over Shields -- but I really like House and Heyward.

I think we are going to be better than last year, but with a worse W/L record. (maybe 13-3). But we are going to me a bad mo-fo of a team.