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Packers Notebook - Green Hits Paydirt And Record Books


The way Ahman Green was running Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys, it was no surprise he was setting records. The only question was how many he would set before the day was through.

On a day in which he averaged nearly 11 yards a carry, Green finished with 163 yards and two touchdowns. The Cowboys had no answer for Green as he showed power on a number of runs as well as speed on one particular run that caught everyone's attention - a 90 yard touchdown sprint.

"A.G. running away from 24 (Tony Dixon) is something that will be etched into my mind for a long time," guard Mike Wahle said. "That was impressive because that player was a lot smaller than him and Ahman just kept moving. That was neat to see."

What was incredible about the play was that Green started inside and then burst to the outside in what looked like an obvious touchdown. However, Dixon had the angle and just as it appeared that he would knock Green out of bounds before reaching the end zone, the speedster found another gear.

With his performance on Sunday, Green found another way to add to his great legacy in Green Bay. His 90-yard jaunt ranks third on the Packers all-time list for long runs behind-you guessed it - Green himself with a 98-yard run last season against Denver and Andy Uram who had a 97-yard run versus Detroit in 1939.

Green's long run also made him only the second player in NFL history to have two runs of over 90 yards in his career. Bo Jackson was the other. Green also moved into third place ahead of Don Hutson on the team's all-time list in total offense.

Wahle acknowledged that Green's play gave the Packers offense a much needed break, while damaging the Cowboys hopes.

"We were thrilled," Wahle explained. "When we are up a lot of points at that point in the game, we kind of secretly hope that the defense is out there a little while to give us a break. I think they feel the same way when we're (the offense) on. Everyone is happy, but it's kind of funny the way that works out.

"Getting those long runs really breaks the back of the defense. It really hurt those guys."

Rolling, Rolling, Rolling, Keep That Offense Rolling

To say the Packers offense was rolling on Sunday would have been a bit of an understatement. Actually, it would have been a very large understatement.

In reality, the Cowboys just couldn't get the Packers offense off the field. The Green and Gold scored on their first seven possessions, making it virtually impossible for them to lose at Lambeau Field.

Tackle Mark Tauscher said the Packers' key to success was a simple one.

"We were just moving the chains," Tauscher explained. "On third down we were in manageable spots. When we're in manageable third downs we're tough to beat."

So are the Packers where they want to be after a dominant showing for the second consecutive week?

Tauscher doesn't think so.

"It's coming, but I still think we have a ways to go," Tauscher said. "I don't think we're running the power as well as we'd like. Our outside running game has been very effective for us. If we can get that back to where it was last year we're going to be pretty excited about our running game."

Bubba Franks, who caught his third touchdown of the season, said the seven consecutive scores had a lot to do with the Packers' desire to reward the Lambeau Field crowd.

"That's guys wanting to win at home big time," Franks said. "We were really focused. We've lost some big games here and we didn't want the fans to count us out. They have supported us the whole time and we were going to dig deep for this one and all the rest of them we have at home."

Dominance Means An Uneventful Day For Barker

You know it's a good day when you score 41 points including scores on seven consecutive possessions. You also understand that things are going well when you have a halfback throwing a touchdown pass. Certainly, a star running back setting records doesn't hurt the cause, either.

But maybe the most telling statistic of the day came from a player that only registered two plays on the day. The services of punter Bryan Barker were not an issue Sunday and it's always positive when you can keep your punter on the bench.

Barker came for his first punt with only 9:36 remaining on the clock in the fourth quarter and boomed the ball 60 yards. A penalty wiped that play out, but Barker still ended up with only two punts on the day.

"He had a great punt there at the end when he had to punt," GM/Head Coach Mike Sherman said. "If we can keep our punter on the bench and he can come in and do the job he did, that's a great thing. I thought he had a nice punt that put them down there and that turned into great, great field position for us."

On a day with so many great accomplishments, the lack of punts for the Packers could have been the most telling stat.

Only Difference Is Execution

Much has been made of the fact that Sherman has been calling the plays in the last two weeks, both of which turned out to be lopsided Packer wins. While the offense's production has been remarkable during that time, Sherman and some of his players say it has more to do with the players' execution than the calls.

According to Sherman, it was only a matter of time before the team's talented offense got untracked.

"The last couple ball games I think we have come into our own a little bit," Sherman said. "I wish we could have come into our own sooner, but we made some strides today converting nine out of 12 third downs. Certainly when you do that and you are pretty good in the red zone you are going to score points and move the football. That's what it was today.

"Trust me, it's not the plays, it's the players making plays. When they go up and make plays - throws, catches, runs and blocks - it's easy to call the game."

Tauscher couldn't have agreed more with his head coach.

"I'd say it's almost all execution," Tauscher said. "When Tom (Rossley) was calling the plays we were executing really poorly. Now everyone is asking who should be calling the plays, but it comes down to us. The coaches coach and I don't think Tom and Mike have any difference in opinion of what they do. I think they sit down and talk over what they are going to call.

"We just have been blocking things better. I think the most important thing is we're not down 17 to nothing. We've been able to do what we want to do instead of have to play catch up and that's been a big difference."

Clearly the Packers have been a dominant team lately. Regardless of who is calling the plays, the wins are coming and you can bet that is all anyone cares about at 1265 Lombardi Avenue.

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