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Inbox: That's yeoman's work up front

There’s barely enough time to finish exhaling

G Jon Runyan & C/G Josh Myers
G Jon Runyan & C/G Josh Myers

Joseph from Vermillion, SD

Here's to another crack at, "That was the statement they needed to make."

This was submitted at 9:30 a.m. Saturday and I hung onto it. Glad I did.

Dave from Edina, MN

Well, that was fun!

It beats the alternative, doesn't it? If you didn't have a horse in that race, it was one immensely entertaining contest. Equally immense is how there's barely enough time to finish exhaling before the ball is getting kicked off again.

Matt from Rice Lake, WI

Who gets the game ball, Rudy Ford or Christian Watson?

I can't choose.

Lee from Kingman, AZ

Great team victory! My only question is, how was Rudy not carried off the field after the game?!

He was serenaded by his teammates in the locker room. That'll have to do.

Dustin from Warrensburg, MO

Who else had No. 9 on offense and No. 20 on defense circled as the players who would lift this team to victory this week? I'm sure glad they did, we needed this one.

I'll take no credit for Ford, but "Unscripted" viewers/listeners heard me deliver a mini-soliloquy on Watson last Thursday. This offense needs him, needs his speed, needs everything he can bring.

Joe from Eau Claire, WI

So you're saying that a healthy Christian Watson changes this offense?

I think so, yeah. It's not a cure-all, but he's a different type of threat, the kind defenses mark and discuss.

Steve from St. Croix Falls, WI

What a great feeling that must have been to not only get your first NFL receiving touchdown, but to get two more in the same game. Kudos to the young wideout. My question is this: Did his success affect the Dallas defense to allow Lazard to get open?

On the late slant pass? No, 200-plus rushing yards did that.

Derek from Poynette, WI

I'm thinking about renaming my first born, Rudy or Christian … or Aaron. What a game! I'm not going to overreact, and declare this team being fixed, but a good game plan and some execution goes a long way. Here's to staying relevant for at least a few more weeks, and hopefully something to really build off of.

It takes one side picking up the other, like any win does. Ford's INT at the goal line three plays after Rodgers' fumble was the reverse sequence of last week in Detroit. It takes clutch plays in clutch moments, too. Fourth-and-7 on offense, fourth-and-3 on defense. This game hung in the balance several different times. It was that kind of Sunday in the NFC North, apparently.

Summer from Williamsburg, VA

That was certainly the momentum shift needed in this season. What is the most important piece of that game for the team to take into next week?

Aside from the list above, I'll add these: Stubbornness with the run, catching the ball on defense when they throw it to you, surer hands at punt returner, and emphasis on play-action.

Butch from Donna, TX

Was a STAR born yesterday?

Tim from Superior, WI

If this team was searching for an identity, they may have found it against Dallas. Run the ball majority of the time and hit big-play passes down the field as a complementary feature. Watson sure picked a good game for his coming out party! Now just stay healthy and maybe hold off on backflip celebrations.

As I said in the live blog, if defenses are going to single cover a guy with Watson's speed on the outside, you have to make them pay. Have to.

Brent from Santa Maria, CA

When was the last time a Packers rookie had a three-TD game?

Three TD receptions was last accomplished by a Packers rookie in 1978, James Lofton. Billy Howton and Max McGee also did it in the '50s.

Matt from Waunakee, WI

Best performance of the year by the offensive line.

The Cowboys were averaging four sacks per game, and Aaron Rodgers only went down twice. That's yeoman's work up front. With the Cowboys leading by two TDs in the fourth quarter, I'm sure they were counting on their pass rush to close the game out, but the Packers kept them honest by continuing to pound with the run. Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon combined for 70 rushing yards on the two tying TD drives that covered 165 total.

See scenes from the Sunday afternoon matchup between the Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys at Lambeau Field on Nov. 13, 2022.

Tom from Lisbon, WI

Seeing Watson haul in that first TD, especially after the drops to start the game, was just so cathartic. Regardless of the outcome, that just felt like a release of so much tension from the last few weeks. It made me feel like everything was going to be OK.

I loved his answer postgame to a question about the drop in Minnesota on the first-snap bomb. "I forgot about that play already. I don't even know what play you're talking about." Delivered with a little smile. He earned that moment.

Richard from Madison, WI

Is there any statistic coming out of the game more impressive than that the Cowboys throughout history were 195-0 in games in which they led by at least 14 points entering the fourth quarter, and now they're 195-1?

I was floored by that. Absolutely floored, so I couldn't resist including it in my postgame editorial.

Tom from West Salem, WI

There have been way too many visiting fans at Lambeau this season.

Packers got a little taste of their own medicine there.

Tucker from Belton, TX

Tip of the cap to Isaiah McDuffie. 13 tackles on the day – what a job stepping up for an injured teammate. It feels like if the Packers indeed go on a run that will have to be the theme, guys stepping up when given the chance.

De'Vondre Campbell will be back at some point, but Rashan Gary won't. The other outside linebackers supporting Preston may need to step up more than anyone else for this defense.

Matt from Waunakee, WI

Interesting stat of the game. Packers win the TOP by five minutes. The Cowboys ran 79 plays. The Packers ran 61 plays.

Dallas was awfully effective with the no-huddle, but without it they couldn't close out the game. The defense playing 79 snaps on a short week is not ideal.

Paul from Ledgeview, WI

Mike, I got the impression the HC was holding a little too tight on the last drive in regulation...maybe because of a five-game losing streak? Do you think he learned something from that?

I don't know the why, but he admitted after the game he regretted that sequence and thanked the team for bailing him out.

Steven from Tucson, AZ

It's what you can accomplish when you're not constantly shooting yourself in the foot. The losing streak is over. Time to start a winning streak.

Sign me up.

Richard from Farmington Hills, MI

We missed most of the first quarter because the Vikings game went into overtime. Did the Packers do a tribute for McCarthy and what kind of reception did he get from the fans?

There was a scoreboard tribute during pregame, and the reception was as it should be.

Joe from Wausau, WI

Mike, last Wednesday I mentioned that Eric Stokes' injury might present an opportunity to move Darnell Savage to nickel. You responded with "That would require substituting Ford for Keisean Nixon." It's so great when plans work out.

Nixon now appears to be the dime back, and the Packers don't deploy their dime a ton, but that arrangement works better assuming Nixon is taking over punt returns because he'll be fresher for that role.

James from Chicago, IL

Turf or grass? Which is better all depends on how you define "injury." Is it an injury if the player leaves the game, misses a game, ends up on IR? I suspect they're not measuring bumps, bruises, overall feeling of aches and pains on the players after the game. Players may have a legit complaint about turf despite what the stats say because what makes them not like it isn't being measured.

I think that's a big part of it. Players talk about the physical toll playing on turf takes on their body, apart from any specific injury statistics, and if the body is getting worn down more, it's more susceptible to injury in upcoming games, regardless of playing surface. NFLPA president JC Tretter also issued a statement, which began a swelling of attention on social media over the weekend, regarding slit film turf fields, a specific type of artificial surface used in six NFL stadiums (New York, Detroit, Minnesota, New Orleans, Indianapolis, Cincinnati) that apparently does have a higher non-contact injury rate than other turf fields. Perhaps that's a starting point everyone can agree on if the data supports the claim.

Scott from Prescott, AZ

The natural grass question puzzles me. Proof of concept shows natural grass can grow and be used in all domed stadiums. Even if research shows there is no correlation between artificial turf and increases to non-contact injuries, why not just do it (if the men risking their health want it)? Compared to all the costs a team/stadium owner incurs, it would be a nominal addition. Are the team and facility owners that greedy?

One of the big issues for whoever owns certain stadiums (team, public entity, etc.) is the desire for the facility to be used for all sorts of events year-round, such as concerts, without concern for damage and upkeep to a natural grass surface. So that's a discussion point in the back and forth.

Jim from Hudsonville, MI

Now THAT deserves Lego highlights!

A popular request, but on a short week I wouldn't hold your breath.

Thommy from Orlando, FL

And the season was saved by the strength of Reed's arms.

I want to take a closer look at those defensive stops down the stretch. Everything was so intense and chaotic in those moments doing the live blog. Might be where I focus my film study today.

Mark from Westminster, CO

It sure is fun to watch Diggs (Bills) and Jefferson (Vikings). Those two are really good!

It's difficult for me to remember a major trade that worked out so well for both teams. And what a crazy game. Wow.

Nick from Prescott, WI

Hey, did you guys happen to watch a few football games this Sunday?

Vikings down 17 in the third quarter, Lions down 14 in the fourth quarter. Justin Fields had almost as many rushing yards (147) as passing yards (167) and accounted for four touchdowns (five if you count his pick-six). Divisional insanity.

Stan from Menomonie, WI

Kickstart my Green and Gold heart! Where the heck have these guys been?

That's a popular question, but also a useless one. The one that matters is now that they're here, whether they're here for good.

Steve from Algoma, WI

Isn't it interesting how winning one makes everything feel different? Here's an interesting tidbit: Not counting the division leaders there are only four NFC teams with a better record than the Packers, and they just beat one of them. A 10-7 record isn't out of the question and it's probably enough to get to the playoffs. We've seen how 13 wins and No. 1 seed didn't work out the way we wanted. Maybe being a road team finishing the year on a 7-1 tear is the way to go. Who would want to face that?

Holy cow. Just beat the Titans.

Dylan from Santa Rosa, CA

God, I love that this is the Thursday night week.

It's Mike, actually, but maybe the mojo will work to the Packers' advantage in a challenging spot.

Tony from Davenport, IA

Could this be the spark that we all have been waiting for?

We'll find out in three days.

Greg from Danbury, CT

So you're saying there's a chance?

Happy Monday.

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