By the time the first quarter was over, the Green Bay Packers had fallen behind 21-0 to the Tennessee Titans. In what was the worst performance of the season, the Packers suffered their third straight defeat, falling to the Titans 47-25.
The Packers allowed 111 points in the three games and have dropped four of their last five overall. The Packers allowed 30 or more points in each of the four losses.
Aaron Rodgers was sacked five times and the Packers (4-5) were penalized 12 times, including four personal foul penalties.
Throw in the fact that the Packers lost starters Jake Ryan (ankle), T.J. Lang (ankle) and David Bakhtiari (knee) during the game, hardly anything went right.
The 21 points that Tennessee scored against the Packers defense turned from 21 in the first quarter to 35 by halftime.
The Packers are 9-12 over the last 21 games. The only saving grace is the fact that the Packers still remain just a game behind the Vikings and Lions in the NFC North Division with seven games left to play.
But the Packers still have two more road games left before returning to Lambeau Field. They’ll play at Washington in prime time on Sunday night, then face another prime time game at Philadelphia the following week.
The big matchup going into the game was the Packers top ranked rush defense against the NFL’s third ranked rush offense. That matchup went away early when DeMarco Murray found a gaping hole in the Packers defensive line and ran 75-yards for the games first touchdown.
Murray finished the game with 123 yards rushing on 17 carries with a touchdown. He averaged 7.2 yards a carry. Derrick Henry also rushed 9 times for 31 yards and the Titans finished had 162 yards on 30 carries for the game.
It could have been worse, but the Packers filled the box to try to stop the run. The Titans decided to take advantage of the extra space on the backside by throwing the ball. Marcus Mariota completed 19 of 26 for 295 yards and four touchdowns. His passer rating was 149.8.
The Packers defense gave up 446 total yards, six touchdowns and two field goals on the day.
The Packers had some encouraging performances from wide receiver Davante Adams (6 rec. 156 yds) and Jordy Nelson (12 rec. 126 1 td). But the positives end there.
In previous years, Mike McCarthy’s team did some of its best work when their backs were against the wall. That hasn’t been the case this season.
The Packers have no running game, and any effort to try to get James Starks going proved difficult when the Packers fell so far behind.
The Packers have been to the playoffs for seven straight seasons, but falling short could cost Mike McCarthy and Ted Thompson their jobs.
The message from the coach and players after games is the same. We have to correct the film, get back to work and get it done the next week. It’s the same response. But what else can they say?
They’re extremely fortunate that the NFC North Division is so weak that the Packers still have the division title in the picture. But it’s looking more and more like the Packers, even if they could find a way to win their division, would be a quick out in the post season. And the post season may soon be a pipe dream if the players and coaches don’t find a way to turn things around quickly.