How did Packers lack energy in Week One?

Green Bay Packers v New Orleans Saints
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Of all the things said and not said in the aftermath of the shellacking the Packers endured in Week One, the most significant came from quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who told Pat McAfee on Tuesday that “our energy level was a little bit low” on Sunday.

While that may explain why they lost by 35 points to the Saints at a neutral site, it doesn’t explain why the energy level was a little bit low.

IT WAS WEEK ONE. How was the energy level anything other than maximum? If a team isn’t fully energized for the first game of the season, something deeper is going on.

Maybe it’s the bizarre and conspicuous tendency of the Packers to crap the bed when they travel to California or Florida (1-5 combined under Matt LaFleur), a tendency that becomes more noteworthy given how well they’ve played everywhere else (27-4 combined under Matt LaFleur). Maybe it’s the lethargy that flows from the extended drama involving Rodgers’s total disengagement from the team from January to July and/or the lingering perception that it’s his last ride. Maybe he’s partially responsible for failing to light a fire under his teammates in certain circumstances; of all the things we know about Tom Brady, we know he wouldn’t let his teammates enter the first game of the season with anything less than a full tank of give-a-damn.

So it’s alarming. It’s very alarming. While it’s fixable, it had better be fixed, quickly. To fix it, the Packers need to understand what caused it. And if they determine that the cause traces to the extra layers of distraction flowing from the tenuous status of Aaron Rodgers, that leads toward some potentially interesting outcomes — if they can’t quickly get everyone refocused for a game on Monday night against the Lions that the Packers should win, but could lose.

Fall to Detroit, and a Sunday night visit to the 49ers makes 0-3 a very likely start to a regular season following a pair of 13-3 finishes.

59 responses to “How did Packers lack energy in Week One?

  1. “A full tank of give-a-damn”. Excellent play on words.

    I guess the next trend will be to “open up a can of GAD”.

  2. Good gosh, if anybody watched that game it was obvious the Packers lacked intensity and energy. It also showed that not having their starters play a snap in preseason was the wrong move. Packers were rusty, out game planned and confused. 3 OL at new positions and a different defense with a new “leader” .. it showed in a real game they didn’t have a clue. To use a phrase I hate, it’d better get cleaned up!

  3. If you’re not excited for the season to start, how can you be excited for it to continue?

    Rodgers looks tired and I don’t think he cares

  4. The QB, by definition, is the team leader. Rodgers has failed miserably in this area. I understand that he’s a “complicated fella”, but even he should be embarrassed by his behavior this past off season. He has tarnished himself and his legacy.

  5. A physician friend of mine repeatedly told me that people are what they appear to be. As of late, Rodgers looks more like a California beach bum than a $30/year NFL QB.

  6. The Vikings should make that awkward call and just see if they want to swap Rodgers for Cousins. Minnesota adds a pick to sweeten the deal.

  7. A couple years ago the Packers traded away a first and 3rd round pick to move up higher into the first round to draft a new QB. That QB isn’t even playing, and those draft picks could have helped them win the super bowl last year. They already had an MVP QB. That will zap a team’s energy.

  8. A few years ago KC and NE played on opening day, and KC destroyed New England…. New England was bashed and everyone said they were done, Tom was old, his love for the game was over and the magic was gone… They went on to win the Super Bowl. There’s nothing more unusual than the backlash people put on teams for games early in the season. With all the history, we should know better than to judge a team based on early September games. But it’s a atory…

  9. Losing to the Lions would be like losing to Houston, grounds for firing. At least the Jags tried to mount a comeback last week. Rodgers basically didn’t care. He’s got that turned in my two week notice vibe.

    That being said, there’s no way the Pack can’t blow out a bad team that just lost it’s only starting caliber CB for the season. Right?

  10. I still find it a remarkable stat that TB has won more NFC championship games at Lambeau Field than Aaron Rodgers has. Real question….How has Rodgers NOT won more ??

  11. Listen I question Rodgers as a person as much as the next man, but there’s no such thing as “fixed, and quickly” with him.

    He’s what, gone on 8, 10, 7 etc game win streaks after starting 1-3 2-5 etc.

    He may not be 1 of those elite QBs that will will his team to championships but he is 1 of those elite QBs who will run through regular season opponents and get his team to the playoffs.

  12. Aaron Rodgers is no Tom Brady, that’s for sure

    Brady has more “give a damn” in his little finger at this point than Rodgers does in his whole body.

  13. how long until we see a rodgers meltdown mid-game? maybe a nice screaming match on the sidelines with his coaches?

  14. Here’s some free betting advice: Over the course of the year, the number of Favorites who cover the spread vs the number Underdogs who cover the spread will be almost a 50/50 split…that’s how the Casinos ensure they make their money…the juice covers the loss and that wouldn’t work if say Underdogs covered the spread 75% of the time or vice versa…

    …Week 1 saw a lotta underdogs cover the spread…so expect more favorites to cover the spread this week…good luck!

  15. I’m likely drunk right now says:
    September 15, 2021 at 8:44 am
    I still find it a remarkable stat that TB has won more NFC championship games at Lambeau Field than Aaron Rodgers has. Real question….How has Rodgers NOT won more ??

    4 0 Rate This


    His GM and Coach. Brees and Rodgers would have loved BB. Manning, too.

  16. The lack of preseason work was also a factor. The starters didn’t play a snap in a live game.

    The lack of effort is on the coach first, players second. I’m old enough to remember Vince Lombardi and his teams. There never was a lack of motivation. Mike Holmgren was the same way. LaFleur has to stop being pals with everybody, especially Rodgers, and get the professionals to do their jobs.

    However, as dysfunctional as things are now, a loss to the Lions is not out of the question.

  17. Even if we start the season 0-3, with 14 games left we could still end up 14-3, or maybe 3-14. Who knows?

  18. Rodgers will not finish the season in Green Bay, Love will. Rodgers will get his wish and be traded before the season is out.

  19. And maybe it was because Joe Barry who has been a failure at every stop put a crappy defense on the field.

  20. There’s a different feel this year in GB. Who knows how it will all work out. BUT…demanding Cobb to be acquired may not have sat well with some teammates. He’s washed up and holding a roster sport that could’ve been used for someone deserving of it. Team vibe/energy is complex, and Aaron could be responsible for drainage.

  21. If this had been a boxing match it would have been considered fixed. The league cares more about gambling revenue and pandering to Twitter “activists” than it does about what a catch or a 20 yard spiraling “fumble” into the end zone looks like, so naturally it is becoming as uncompelling to the players as it is to the audience.

  22. I don’t expect the Lions to beat Green Bay this week. Their defense is terrible. They really don’t have a shot unless Green Bay plays like they did last week. But even if Green Bay gets a big lead, the Lions showed they’ll keep fighting. This could wind up being an exciting game.

  23. Relax, relax. These things happen. Just not normally to the Packers. We’ll be fine. We are the epitome of a franchise that can deal with adversity. The NFC North should very worried that the sleeping giant has been disturbed.

  24. How Jay Gruden hired Joe Barry with that track record is a mystery to me. Then the Packers hire him and expect something different? Pretty sure every place he’s been he’s been about the worst defensive coordinator they ever had. But he keeps getting opportunities? Very strange.

  25. Could be the play of the saints for numerous reasons. When your qb has 25 percent of the total passes go for a td that is game plan. When you are run on at will that is scheme and refused to make adjustments to stop the run. When you only get anything going when number one corner is getting a x-ray in the locker room that poor adjustments.

    They were beaten to soundly to blame on flat.

  26. In 2003 Brady’s Patriots opened the season in Buffalo and lost 31-0. Everyone jumped on the Buffalo band wagon and buried the Patriots. Patriots then went 14-1 the rest of the way and won the super bowl while Buffalo went 5-10 to finish out (including losing to NE by the same 31-0 score to finish the season ironically). Not saying this situation will mirror that one but I’m not ready to bury GB or jump on the Saints bandwagon after one week.

  27. A lot of things go into individual game outcomes, and none of those outcomes from week 1 really mean that much.

    But it sure looks like this being the first game play for the starters has a lot to do with the outcome of this game and others as well. We saw some real sloppiness from teams whose starters were just now getting real game play.

    Winston just went through a few weeks of fighting for his job in live games. I figure that has to be meaningful.

  28. blackqbwhiterb says:
    September 15, 2021 at 10:33 am
    How Jay Gruden hired Joe Barry with that track record is a mystery to me. Then the Packers hire him and expect something different? Pretty sure every place he’s been he’s been about the worst defensive coordinator they ever had. But he keeps getting opportunities? Very strange.


    Agree completely. Firing Mike Pettine over one decision, however crucial it was, is a mistake. Pettine can coach and scheme circles around Joe Barry.

  29. If they lose to the Lions, they are in trouble. Until then based on past history they will be alright….

  30. Kinda looked like the same as the last game they played, the NFC championship. Hail Mary’s don’t work all the time.

  31. First of all don’t let one game throw everybody into a tailspin. Secondly I think the Rogers drama had a lot to do with their performance but not in the way everyone is thinking. There was so much talk about needing Rogers to come back, and how much he meant to the team, that I think once he showed up at practice everyone relaxed and said good he’s here we’re set. I think it’s a simple as that. I think his return after all that speculation gave everyone a sense of all is well and a collective sigh of relief. They felt confident they were going to win now and forgot they still had to go out and do it. Too much importance focused on him, and not enough on the team, and they reflected it. They’ll be fine this year, they just needed to wake up out of the sweet dreams and play up to their potential. I am a Vikings fan, but I know they’ll do it.

  32. They keep talking about how Aaron Rogers and the Packers played terribly while disrespecting The New Orleans Saints, whose defense was brilliant in keeping Rogers on his butt and overpowering their offensive line with 2nd and 3rd string players. Not only that, The Saints offense took advantage of every single opportunity the Pack gave them . How else could Winston throw 5 TDs to no name players (except Kamara) while only throwing for 148 yds? The Saints O-Line allowed him to stay upright. Remember, The Saints had to practice in Dallas at TCU because of Hurricane Ida and play their home game in Jacksonville. The odds were against them, but they rose to the occasion.

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