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Inbox: He took a sizable step forward

They’ll come back to that play

CB Eric Stokes

James from Anna, TX

Well, that went well.

It was a good win, with plenty to work on. Just the way coaches like them.

Corina from Wilsonville, OR

Did Aaron Jones ever find his necklace that he lost during the game?

By far the most popular question. He said on a radio show this morning that the necklace and pendant containing his father's ashes was found by head athletic trainer Bryan Engel ("Flea") just before 2 a.m. in that north end zone.

Jack from Marshfield, WI

There are seven teams at 2-0 and seven at 0-2. Do those seem like unusually low numbers of undefeated and winless teams this early in the season?

I don't have the list in front of me, but more than half the league at 1-1 after two weeks is classic NFL these days.

Jessi from Sterling, KS

I have to confess I don't watch many other QB postgame interviews. However, it just seems to me Aaron Rodgers has such a great blend of respectful bluntness in his interviews. He's not afraid to confront the media hype without being arrogant or rude. Do you think it will affect the way players will deal with the media going forward? Maybe have a more honest, healthy approach? It seems few find the balance.

Every guy has his own way. Rodgers has a ton of experience with it and is always rather calculated. He knows what he wants to say. He'll also do his best to give a meaningful answer to meaningful questions. I like best the way he just shoots straight, and that's all a writer can ask for. Him disagreeing somewhat with the premise of my question – that the offense got back to what it's supposed to look like – because he didn't feel they're totally in rhythm yet, became the basis for my postgame editorial.

Jon from Tallahassee, FL

Everyone was talking about the "slow start" on offense. I was thrilled by what I saw. It's not as sexy as chucking it down the field, but it's playing four quarters. With that game plan, you win NOW cuz you're moving the chains, eating clock, wearing 'em down with the run. But you also win even more LATER cuz third and fourth quarter, that defense is whipped. Do you think the offense got off to a slow start? Also, during commercials I went to the blog. Lots of half-empty people. Can we have some fun?

The three-and-out on the second possession was frustrating coming off the opening TD, and I think it bugged Rodgers too. He sensed the defense is still finding its way, and he feels the offense is going to have to provide a lead early in games.

John from New York, NY

How can this Packer defense improve?

I thought LaFleur's postgame answer about discussing the rush/coverage plans with Barry at halftime was enlightening. It sounds like they're trying to find the right complements and combinations with their personnel, meaning which rush plans (straight four, extra guys) go best with which coverages (man, zone).

Drew from Monroe, WA

Is it time to name Eric Stokes the starter over Kevin King? Stokes was way more effective and has the speed needed to compete while King was beaten bad.

This game already showed a shift in the works. When Stokes came in the game, he played on the boundary, and King moved into the slot. We'll have to keep watching that. Stokes had a solid performance. He took a sizable step forward, but the Packers will face much deeper receiving corps than Detroit's.

Bob from Oconomowoc, WI

Kevin King had some rough patches during the game but credit where credit's due: The Lions almost had a one-handed touchdown that King somehow acrobatically knocked away at the last moment. That replay was wild.

I was too busy blogging to catch the replay so I definitely have to see it. I couldn't believe the way Cephus almost caught that.

Dalton from DeForest, WI

What adjustments did the Packers' defense make for the second half tonight from the first three halves of the season to allow them to pitch a shutout?

Well, the fumbled snap was a killer for the Lions and that was all on Goff. But once the Packers had a lead that forced Detroit to abandon the run, I saw an extra rusher being sent to make Goff get the ball out, and with man coverage on quick throws there was a defender right there to make the tackle. They sped things up and Goff couldn't get the ball downfield.

Steven from Silver Spring, MD

With Za'Darius Smith on temporary IR, does that create an extra roster spot for those three weeks? It would seem that would allow us to bring Jace Sternberger back in without having another player released.

La'Darius Hamilton was signed when Smith went on IR, so if Sternberger is to be activated, there will have to be a corresponding roster move.

Christopher from Frederick, MD

I haven't watched "Rounders" in years, now I gotta go watch it again.


Joseph from Salt Lake City, UT

Think back to the first PI we drew with Robert Tonyan. At first I thought it was an off throw where we got kinda lucky with the positioning of the DB. Then I wondered if AR12 put it exactly where he wanted knowing Tonyan would have to run through the defender and draw a flag?! Thoughts? Seems he's playing a different game sometimes.

That's what I thought when I saw it.

Mark from Westminster, CO

I sure would hate to be a defensive coordinator going up against Rodgers. Allen Lazard was wide open on the right-to-left crossing route, perfect play design. But the guy chasing Tonyan had his back to Rodgers, so that must mean Tonyan's open too. I'll use a Harry Caray phrase and say, "HOLY COW."

I guarantee you Rodgers will hit Lazard on that in-breaker sometime soon. They'll come back to that play.

Greg from Dublin, PA

That throw and catch on Tonyan's touchdown was incredible on TV and in a slo-mo replay. How did it look in person?

Like Rodgers trusts the heck out of that guy.

Ryan from Bloomer, WI

Do yourself a favor. Go back and watch Jon Runyan on the first offensive play from scrimmage. That is all.

You weren't the only reader to mention this. Color me intrigued. I do think it'll be interesting to see who can hold down that starting job at left guard until David Bakhtiari is back and Elgton Jenkins, presumably, slides over.

Dave from Lake Zurich, IL

De'Vondre Campbell was all over the field. Even on the touchdown pass he had pretty good coverage on Hockenson.

I thought so, too. Good throw, good catch. Campbell looked much better than he did in his Packers debut last week, and that was before the pick.

Dan from Fort Wayne, IN

Hello Mike, Packer Nation was more than likely expecting a bounce-back game against the Lions. Rodgers, Jones and Adams didn't disappoint on the offensive side of the ball. Defensively De'Vondre really stood out. Beyond Campbell who did you see making a Game 2 jump on defense? I really liked what Stokes had to show in coverage as the game wore on. Thoughts?

As I noted in my game recap, it was obvious the game plan was built around the stars, which is how you get an offense back on solid ground. The Packers ran 58 plays before the three kneel-downs, and between touches and targets, Jones and Davante Adams accounted for 32 of those plays. Defensively, aside from Campbell and Stokes, I also liked what I saw from Kenny Clark. I think he's just getting warmed up.

Maury from Minnetonka, MN

It appears we found a diamond in Kylin Hill. Do you think he will get a bit more extended play?

On offense? No, not if Jones and Dillon are healthy. Hill can help this team best with more kickoff returns like the 41-yarder in the second quarter. He showed a lot of balance and burst on that one.

Jeffrey from Eveleth, MN

Did you guys happen to hear the Viking radio call on the missed field goal on Sunday?

I did, and it was cringeworthy. I understand how a home radio announcer can get too caught up in the moment, creating an unfortunate blunder. But I also wonder if fans' obsession with "great calls" in big moments puts the focus on the wrong thing for some with a microphone. Getting it right has to matter most, no matter how it sounds.

Steven from Stephens City, VA

Wes, that was a wonderful article written about TT. My question isn't towards you but to any Packers fan who disagrees with TT's stadium honor. If Favre doesn't throw an interception and Bostick catches the football, do you still view TT the same way? Three super bowl appearances in 13 years, the problem comes down to two plays that TT has no shot of changing. He gave the Packers a chance, they just didn't capitalize.

Couldn't agree with that last sentence more. There's no GM in sports who can go out and win the games, too. And yes, Wes hit that story outta the park.

Larry from Rotunda West, FL



Andy from Verona, WI

So you're saying it's a week-to-week league?

Been doing so for years now, for anyone who will listen. Thank you. For the sanity and the lower volume.

Jeffro from Kenosha, WI

Refs are making narrow-minded calls all over the board, Penn State-Auburn intentional grounding and Ravens-Chiefs ineligible downfield, both perhaps technically correct but also totally missing the spirit of the rule, and the game. It looks to me that refs are trying too hard to meet some perfectionist technical standard and ignoring the spirit of the game!

Somewhere along the line, the idea that a penalty in football needed to be an infraction that materially affected the play got lost. Probably when broadcasts went from a few cameras to dozens.

Joe from Swansea, IL

Call me paranoid, but a quick look at the schedule shows that the Packers have one of the longest trips following a Monday night game all season – a whopping 1,836 air miles to San Fran this weekend. Why does the NFL do that to their marquee teams? Couldn't the league figure out a way to have the Monday night teams play at home the next Sunday? Sure they could, if they wanted. More to the point: How does a long trip like that cut into a team's preparation on a short week?

It doesn't, really. They'll wrap up their prep by mid-day Saturday like usual and just head to the airport. The game being at night will allow for some Sunday morning meetings at the hotel. But no, a long road trip at the end of a short week is not ideal.

View some of the best photos from the Monday Night Football matchup between the Green Bay Packers vs. Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field on Sept. 20, 2021.