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Packers defense on the hot seat again

Here's a homework assignment for Packers fans


Noah from Brisbane, Australia

Vic, what is your play of the game?

It's the 60-yard touchdown pass to Jordy Nelson. That play came out of nowhere and at a critical point in the game when the Packers needed to do something to recapture control of the game. They did.

Paul from Green Bay, WI

Can you ban Sean from the UK for chortling?

One-week ban for chortling. He nearly lost that game.

Balint from Budapest, Hungary

Vic, do you think Aaron Rodgers is ever going to throw another interception?

Et tu, Balint? You're banned.

Tim from Madison, WI

What do you make of that second-half comeback? Did the Packers just take their foot off the pedal, or did the Falcons get in a groove?

The Packers lost their edge at halftime. The Falcons sharpened theirs.

Jason from Olsen, AZ

I just watched Aaron Rodgers call out his defense and fans in his postgame interview. I'm sure you caught that. Thoughts?

I didn't catch that.

Kevin from Whitehall, WI

Was it a step back for the defense, or more a case of keeping it simple/basic in the second half?

I think it was a case of not matching the Falcons' energy in the second half. It's a good lesson for the Packers to take with them to Buffalo.

Dan from Gastonia, NC

It certainly is an interesting end to the season. If the Lions continue to win, then we must beat them in the final game whether we win the next two, split the next two or lose the next two.

I'm as concerned about the Packers winning the No. 1 seed for the NFC playoffs as I am for beating the Lions and winning the division, because you can't do the first without doing the second. I don't want to go back to Seattle.

Rob from Fayetteville, GA

Vic, I keep writing because I am disgusted in our defense. Tired of the excuse that we run a zone. Well, the zone does not work every time! What does Coach Belichick do when the Patriots struggle? Adjust! There is a word in our vocabulary, adjustment. Capers does not understand that word. He keeps relying on Rodgers to pull it off. I am sick of it! Capers has to be fired even if the Packers win the Super Bowl. Even if the defense wins it, but they won't. A win in the Super Bowl will come down to Rodgers.

Why stop at Coach Capers? What about Ketchman? Fire him, too. Everyone must be fired. Why? Because it feels so good. Fire, fire, fire! Everyone's firing out here.

Brian from Holcomb, AL

I blame the comeback on Wayne Larivee calling dagger in the first half. Professionals should never chortle.

Wayne called dagger in the first half? Is there any chance we wanted a Falcons comeback because we're all tired of watching blowouts?

Robert from Terre Haute, IN

Vic, you had 117 and 123 passer ratings in last night's game. Is this what the NFL really wants?


Thomas from St. Johns, FL

Vic, did we lose? Why is everyone from announcers to players to media acting like it was a scary game? The Packers handled their business and did what we had to do to win. The record at season's end doesn't give style points, just wins and losses. I'm proud of our win and excited to keep pace for the homefield playoff advantage.

The truth lies somewhere between "fire everyone" and "everything's fine." Everything was not fine in the second half last night. Coach McCarthy made a point of being critical of the boundary communication. He wasn't specific, but I have a feeling he was referring to miscommunicated coverages.

Harry from Rochester, NY

In the postgame comments, Ray Lewis said the Packers need to clean up their defense to become a championship team. Steve Young said he believed the Packers got bored with the big lead? Who do you agree with, Lewis or Young and why?

I agree with both of them. The Packers' second-half performance on defense won't win in the postseason. I don't think you can beat the Lions playing that way. I also believe the Packers didn't play with the same energy in the second half that they did in the first half, and that won't win the big games, either. It's been a long season. Players are nursing bumps and bruises. They want to make sure they have something left in the tank. You know what I mean?

Paul from De Pere, WI

For me, the poor defensive effort in the second half overshadowed everything. Feels like a victory in name only. The Falcons simply ran out of time. Am I losing perspective?

I think the Packers were playing the clock, not the Falcons, in the second half. That's my perspective.

Zach from Plymouth, MN

Vic, I see the secondary got beat badly in the second half. Is that a result of scheme? I would guess so since Julio didn't really get double-teamed at all in the second half.

Julio Jones was the problem. He leads the league in 20-plus-yard plays. He overmatched the Packers' defenders. I saw him catch passes against all forms of coverage.

Red from Murrieta, CA

From one week to the next, I never know which Packers defense will show up. I know everyone is supposed to R-E-L-A-X, but with our porous pass defense, do you think we have a legitimate shot to make it through the playoffs to the big game?

I don't know. I'll wait to find out and I'll enjoy the process that'll provide the answer. I have a homework assignment for everyone. I want everyone to sit back and survey the situation. The Packers are 10-3 and I believe they will win the No. 1 seed for the NFC playoffs should they win their final three games, which they will be favored to win. Think about that, and feel free to share your thoughts.

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