09/24 01:23 CDT A-Rod driven to drink as Packers digest 31-17 loss to Skins
A-Rod driven to drink as Packers digest 31-17 loss to Skins
By HOWARD FENDRICH
AP Pro Football Writer
LANDOVER, Md. (AP) --- So, Aaron Rodgers was asked, what do you say to your
Green Bay Packers teammates after winning just one of the season's first three
His reply: "I would probably just tell them, 'Go home and have a Scotch.'
That's what I'm going to do."
Sounds about right.
Things have not gone all that well for Rodgers and Co. so far, and as the
Packers (1-1-1) look ahead to hosting the Buffalo Bills next week, there is
plenty to work on.
"We've got to clean our own house," coach Mike McCarthy said. "It's sloppy
That was certainly the case in a 31-17 loss at the Washington Redskins on
Sunday, when Green Bay fell behind 14-0 and trailed 28-10 at halftime after
giving up TD drives of 74, 75, 79 and 98 yards.
Among McCarthy's laments were his team's 11 penalties for 115 yards ---
including three for pass interference on one drive --- and the most-discussed
among those flags was linebacker Clay Matthews' for roughing the passer after
he sacked Alex Smith late in third quarter.
"Unfortunately, this league is going in a direction that a lot of people don't
like. I think they're getting soft. The only thing hard about this league is
the fines they levy down on guys like me that play the game hard," Matthews
said. "Maybe now pass rushers, guys getting after the quarterback, you'll just
have to attack the ball."
The Redskins (2-1), meanwhile, head into their bye with some positive momentum
they hope to maintain when they travel to play at the New Orleans Saints on
Oct. 8 after the early break.
"The big thing is just to stay focused, stay humble and move forward," Redskins
coach Jay Gruden said. "Handle the bye week like pros and come back ready to
Here are things we learned about the Packers and the Redskins moving forward:
PETERSON'S STILL GOT IT
A week after gaining 20 yards on 11 attempts, Adrian Peterson went for 120
yards on 19 runs with a pair of 2-yard TDs. He's 33, but he still can carry a
team. "He fell into our lap at a critical time," said Gruden, whose club signed
Peterson after rookie Derrius Guice tore up his knee in the preseason. "We
needed a player, and he was there for us. He is everything as advertised."
Rodgers said he expects to start against Buffalo after again dealing with an
injured left knee, which he hurt in Week 1. He wore a bulky brace on his left
knee against Washington, and he came up hobbling a bit after some plays where
he moved around in the pocket or scrambled for a gain. "I got a little banged
up," said Rodgers, who was 27 for 44 for 265 yards passing with two TDs, "but
finished the game." Added Rodgers: "It can be painful at times moving around,
especially lateral movement. But I'm going to be out there if I'm up to it and
try and get this thing back turned the right direction with a win next week."
The Redskins' defense continues a potentially difficult stretch when it takes
on Saints QB Drew Brees next, after taking on Rodgers and Colts quarterback
Andrew Luck the past two games. Cornerback Josh Norman characterized his unit's
inconsistency this way: "It's kind of like, 'Wow! All right. OK! Ugh. All
right. OK. Finally. Let's go!' It's been that kind of thing, like: Up. Down.
Up. Down. Have great days, have bad days. I don't know. We find our niche at
one point and then we come back down. Then we find it again. It's a seesaw."
WORK IN PROGRESS
Green Bay is still trying to get its offense going in the right direction.
There were several key drops that stood out and a ground game that was limited
to 15 carries for 87 yards by running backs. That included six attempts for 42
yards by Aaron Jones, who returned to action after missing the first two games
while suspended for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy. "We're a work
in progress on offense. We've got to keep finding ways to get Davante (Adams)
more attempts and Jimmy (Graham) more involved. We've got to find the run game,
too, because we have three talented backs," Rodgers said. "We need to start a
little faster. We haven't been starting fast in games."
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