For those of you who have somehow managed to avoid watching the Green Bay Packers this season consider yourselves fortunate. The television commercials starring individual Packer players are much more fun to watch, and they are also much more indicative of what this 2012 Packer team is all about. I am sure you have seen some of these commercials, right?
This Packer team is a team of individual stars both on and off the field. Gone is the unified team that took the National Football League by storm in January and February 2011. There seems to be no hunger, desire, togetherness, or accountability on this outfit. This is in stark contrast to the 2010 team that hoisted the Lombardi Trophy in Dallas.
I pointed out two weeks ago that the Packers, and not the officials, were responsible for the loss in Seattle. Yet, you still saw starters from an offensive line unit that was manhandled throughout much of the game in Seattle jump on their Twitter accounts and point the finger at the replacement officials as opposed to looking in the mirror. You heard no references made, as good teams would have done, that the Seattle game was not lost by virtue of the replacement officials. The good teams would have, as opposed to blaming the officiating, stated that they have to go back to work and make improvements so that games of this nature in the future can be won going away as opposed to losing on the last play of the game.
The million dollar question, though, is, do the Packers even care? Some of them seem to be happy by virtue of receiving the individual accolades. The Packers held a 21-3 lead at halftime yesterday. Good enough, right? Well apparently some in the Packer locker room must have felt this way? The offense had performed well in the first half, and the defense had held the Colts to three points. It certainly appeared that some of the Packers must have thought that they had put in a good days work at that juncture of the game.
In stark contrast to the 2012 Packers are the 2012 Indianapolis Colts. The second half turned out to be a wonderful, beautiful story of perseverance, character and teamwork as the less talented Colts won one for their ailing coach by outscoring the Packers 27-6 in the second half.
I was listening to the Colts radio crew broadcast the game yesterday. Right before halftime, the crew was discussing how you do not have to be mean in order to succeed in football, just tough. The Colts radio crew pointed out that this is what Andrew Luck is all about, that he is one of the nicest, yet the toughest players in the game. Apparently, Luck is also a team player because this “toughness” was embodied by the Colts during that second half.
I discussed back in August that football is won with both a solid defense and running game. I cautioned everyone that the Packers had neither of these essential qualities in 2012. Compounding this problem is apparently the lack of a team concept, accountability, and an overall toughness. The Colts wanted it much more than the Packers did yesterday. Besides beating their arch rivals back in Week 2, have the Packers wanted anything this year besides individual accomplishments? If this does not change soon the Packers are going to find themselves in last place of the North Division come early January.