December 2009 - Green Bay Packers Wiretap
McCarthy Mum On Plans Against Cardinals
Packers coach Mike McCarthy didn't reveal his plans for Sunday's season-ending game on Monday. Green Bay will play Arizona in what is essentially a meaningless game in the standings for the Packers. "We're going to play it the same way," McCarthy said. "I'll just answer that question right here. I'm not going to get into who's playing, how long. . . . The game-planning for this game will go accordingly, just like it always has. Now, if a player has health issues, we'll go through the same process, and when we sit in here on Friday, we'll make final decisions."
RealGM's Week 16 Rundown
The Jets defeated the Colts on Sunday afternoon to ensure that we'll have no undefeated teams in the NFL this season. We will calculate each team's Trench Counter*. San Diego 42, Tennessee 17 Team Trench Counter: Chargers +19.6, Titans -19.6 The San Diego Chargers (12-3) soundly defeated the Tennessee Titans (7-8) on Christmas Night to clinch a bye in the first round of the playoffs and knock the Titans out of the playoff picture. Philip Rivers went 21-for-27 with 264 yards and two touchdowns, LaDainian Tomlinson rushed for 59 yards and two scores and Darren Sproles added 38 rushing yards and another two trips to the end zone. Titans running back Chris Johnson had 142 yards and a touchdown, leaving him 128 yards shy of 2,000 for the season with one game left. Pittsburgh 23, Baltimore 20 Team Trench Counter: Steelers +7.9, Ravens -7.9 The Pittsburgh Steelers (8-7) kept their slim playoff hopes alive with a dramatic win over the rival Baltimore Ravens (8-7). Jeff Reed hit a 38-yard field goal with 5:25 remaining in regulation to give the Steelers a much-needed victory. Pittsburgh led 20-10 at halftime, but Baltimore scored 10 points in the third quarter, including a seven-yard pass from Joe Flacco to tight end Todd Heap, who had two catches for 37 yards and a pair of scores. Santonio Holmes was Pittsburgh?s offensive star. He caught five passes for 86 yards and a touchdown. Carolina 41, N.Y. Giants 9 Team Trench Counter: Panthers +21.8, Giants -21.8 In the most important game of their season, the New York Giants (8-7) collapsed against the Carolina Panthers (7-8). Matt Moore led the Panthers with 171 yards and three touchdowns and Jonathan Stewart exploded for 206 rushing yards and a score of his won as Carolina helped keep New York out of the postseason. Eli Manning went 29-for-43 with 296 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions in the team?s final game at Giants Stadium. Manning also fumbled the ball in the damaging loss. Tampa Bay 20, New Orleans 17 (OT) Team Trench Counter: Buccaneers -1.6, Saints +1.6 Connor Barth kicked a 47-yard field goal in overtime to give the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-12) an upset win over the New Orleans Saints (13-2). Cadillac Williams starred with 129 rushing yards and a touchdown as the Saints lost for the second time in as many weeks. New Orleans jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter, but Tampa Bay scored 20 of the game?s final 23 points, including 14 straight in the fourth quarter. Drew Brees went 32-for-37 for 258 yards and a touchdown in the loss. New England 35, Jacksonville 7 Team Trench Counter: Patriots +16.6, Jaguars -16.6 The New England Patriots (10-5) clinched the AFC East title with a dominant victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars (7-8) at Gillette Stadium. Tom Brady went 23-for-26 with 267 yards and four touchdowns, three of which went to Randy Moss, who had four catches for 45 yards. New England?s defense held Jacksonville scoreless until the 12:41 mark in the fourth quarter, when Jaguars quarterback David Garrard scampered two yards for a touchdown. Houston 27, Miami 20 Team Trench Counter: Texans +7.7, Dolphins -7.7 In a game with huge playoff implications the Houston Texans (8-7) outlasted the Miami Dolphins (7-8) on Sunday afternoon. Matt Schaub threw for 286 yards, two touchdowns and an interception and Arian Foster rushed for 97 yards and a score at Dolphins Stadium. The Texans jumped out to a 27-3 lead in the first half and hung on for a narrow victory as Miami charged back in the third and four quarters. Even with the win, Houston will need some help to make the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. Green Bay 48, Seattle 10 Team Trench Counter: Packers +25.3, Seahawks -25.3 The Green Bay Packers (10-5) clinched a playoff berth with a win over the Seattle Seahawks (5-10) at Lambeau Field. Ryan Grant starred with 97 yards and two touchdowns, while Aaron Rodgers went 12-for-23 with 237 yards and a touchdown as Green Bay built a big lead early on. Ahman Green (29 yards and a score) and Brandon Jackson (39 total yards and three scores) got in on the fun as well. The Packers intercepted Matt Hasselbeck four times and kept the Seahawks out of the end zone until late in the fourth quarter when Hasselbeck connected with tight end John Carlson on a 16-yard touchdown. Cleveland 23, Oakland 9 Team Trench Counter: Browns +8.1, Raiders -8.1 Jerome Harrison didn?t break another single-game rushing record, but he did lead the Cleveland Browns (4-11) over the Oakland Raiders (5-10) on Sunday. Harrison rushed 39 times for 149 yards and a touchdown. His 17-yard run in the first quarter gave the Browns a lead that they would never lose at home. Charlie Frye, who started at quarterback for the Raiders, went 26-for-45 with 333 yards and three interceptions in the loss. Cincinnati 17, Kansas City 10 Team Trench Counter: Bengals +3.3, Chiefs -3.3 The Cincinnati Bengals (10-5) had just enough to beat the Kansas City Chiefs (3-12) to clinch the AFC North title. Carson Palmer connected with Chad Ochocinco on a six-yard touchdown pass with 2:03 left in regulation to push the Bengals to victory. Cedric Benson tallied 133 yards for Cincinnati, while Jamaal Charles rushed for 102 yards for the Chiefs. Larry Johnson, playing against his former team, had just 11 yards on four carries in the victory. Atlanta 31, Buffalo 3 Team Trench Counter: Falcons +20.8, Bills -20.8 The Atlanta Falcons (8-7) defeated the Buffalo Bills (5-10) in a game that had no playoff implications. Matt Ryan had 250 yards and three touchdowns, two of which went to Roddy White, who grabbed eight passes for 139 yards at the Georgia Dome. Atlanta?s defense held Buffalo to just 178 total yards and forced three turnovers (two interceptions by Brian Brohm and a fumble by Fred Jackson). San Francisco 20, Detroit 6 Team Trench Counter: 49ers +10.9, Lions -10.9 In yet another meaningless game, the San Francisco 49ers (7-8) dropped the Detroit Lions (2-13) on Sunday afternoon. Alex Smith posted 230 passing yards and a touchdown, while Frank Gore tallied 71 yards and a rushing touchdown at Candlestick Park. The Lions settled for two field goal as Drew Stanton tossed three interceptions and Detroit lost three fumbles (Stanton had one and Calvin Johnson the two others). Arizona 31, St. Louis 10 Team Trench Counter: Cardinals +18.6, Rams -18.6 The Arizona Cardinals (10-5) dominated the St. Louis Rams (1-14) in a lopsided game at University of Phoenix Stadium. Kurt Warner had 313 yards and two touchdowns and Beanie Wells (68 yards and a score) and Tim Hightower (32 yards and a score) ruled on the ground. Anquan Boldin was Arizona?s leading receiver with eight catches for 116 yards, while Larry Fitzgerald and Early Doucet found the end zone. Keith Null, making his second start, went 20-for-31 with 171 yards, a touchdown and three interceptions. N.Y. Jets 29, Indianapolis 15 Team Trench Counter: Jets +0.8, Colts -0.8 The New York Jets (8-7) handed the Indianapolis Colts (14-1) their first loss of the season as they stood just two weeks from perfection. The Colts pulled some of their starters in the third quarter and the Jets dominated the game?s final 20 minutes. With the win, the Jets can control their playoff destiny by beating the Bengals next week. New York scored the final 19 points of the game. Philadelphia 30, Denver 27 Team Trench Counter: Eagles +11.1, Broncos -11.1 David Akers drilled a 28-yard field goal to give the Philadelphia Eagles (11-4) a win over the Denver Broncos (8-7). The Broncos stormed back in the second half, but the Eagles were able to hold on for their sixth straight win and to remain in the driver?s seat in the NFC East. Philadelphia will travel to Dallas in Week 17 to play for the division title. Donovan McNabb threw for 322 yards, three touchdowns and an interception, while Kyle Orton posted 189 yards, three touchdowns and a pick of his own. Dallas 17, Washington 0 Team Trench Counter: Cowboys +13.1, Redskins -13.1 The Dallas Cowboys (10-5) clinched a playoff berth as they blanked the Washington Redskins (4-11) at FedEx Field. Tony Romo went 25-for-38 with 286 yards, a touchdown and an interception. Jason Witten was Romo?s top target, catching six passes for 117 yards. Jason Campbell had 199 yards and a touchdown as the Dallas defense made numerous timely plays. Shaun Suisham debuted with a 23-yard field goal in the second half for the only points of the second half. *Explaining The Trench Counter
Packers Earn Playoff Berth
The Packers dominated the Seahawks on Sunday afternoon to lock up a playoff berth in the NFC. Green Bay beat Seattle 48-10 at Lambeau Field. In addition to the win, the Packers needed the Panthers to beat the Giants, which they did. "We realize this is just the beginning for us," quarterback Aaron Rodgers said.
Former Packer Calls Favre A 'Diva'
Former Green Bay safety LeRoy Butler raised some eyebrows on Wednesday when he referred to former teammate Brett Favre as a "diva" during his appearance on the NFL Network. "What is so harsh about the truth?" Butler asked. Butler added that Favre wasn't a diva during their time together with the Packers (1992-2001), but said the Vikings have lost their focus on running back Adrian Peterson. "[Peterson] is not getting opportunities," Butler said. "Adrian Peterson should be the focus, but that is hard when your head coach (Brad Childress) is riding with Brett."
Packers Give Chillar Four-Year Extension
Green Bay has signed linebacker Brandon Chillar to a four-year, $21 million contract extension. Chillar was set to become a free agent after the season and will make $7 million in guaranteed money. He has started four games this season and has played through a hand injury.
Packers Eliminate Bears From Playoff Picture
The Packers defeated the Bears 21-14 on Sunday to mathematically eliminate Chicago from the NFC playoff picture. Green Bay running back Ryan Grant rushed for a 62-yard touchdown run in the first quarter and scored the game-winning one-yard touchdown in the fourth. The Bears dropped to 5-8 with the loss.
Jennings Claims No Issue Lingers With Monday's Drops
Greg Jennings had two drops in Monday's win against Baltimore, elevating his total to five for the season. "The slant, just dropped it, didn't go down with it," Jennings said Wednesday. "And the 'puma' (route), on the sideline, I couldn't even see it. Honest, I just dropped it, lost it in the lights. It kind of hit me at the last minute. It happens, it's part of the game, but you've still got to make plays." Jennings says there is no underlying issue with the drops. "No, no, I'm not concerned about that, not at all," Jennings said. "I'm nowhere close to being concerned it. Not sounding cocky about it, but drops are a part of the game. What happened to me on (Monday), the slant, totally me, totally like 100 percent, that is just uncalled for. I can't control the lights."
Rice Apologizes For Lambeau Comments
Ravens running back Ray Rice bashed Lambeau Field, the home of the Packers, following Baltimore's loss on Monday night. "As a man I would like to apologize the fans of green bay you can't judge a book by it's cover and for me to talk about your city was wrong," Rice wrote on his Twitter page. Rice called Lambeau Field "terrible" earlier in the week.
Rice: Lambeau Field Is Terrible
Ravens running back Ray Rice wasn't impressed with Lambeau Field during his team's loss to the Packers on Monday night. "To be honest with you, it was just Lambeau Field," Rice said. "I didn't see anything special. They put us in the middle of nowhere and it's not a real exciting place. "Everything about this place is terrible, to be honest with you." Rice rushed for 54 yards on 14 attempts and fumbled.
Green Bay Not Settled Defensively Despite No. 1 Ranking
The Packers have the highest rank defense, but still have a long ways to go. "We're on our way," said Cullen Jenkins. "Obviously it's not the end of the season and unless you hold that spot until the end of the season, then you're not the No. 1 defense for that year. "Our goals are season-long. We're not just trying to make it to the No. 1 spot for Week 12 and then lose it. We want to keep that spot, so we still feel like we have a lot of improving to do." "If we're the No. 1 defense, then somebody's got to come out of here and be the No. 1 defensive player. It just seems right," said Atari Bigby. "You're talking about a guy who is all over the field; we line him up at so many different positions and he's coming out on top. He's a good corner, nickel, dime, safety. . . . When I look around, I don't see anybody coming at it the way he is doing it."