The Green Bay Packers dropped their sixth straight road game this season, falling to the Minnesota Vikings 24-17 at U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday night. The Packers (4-6-1) now need to win all five of their remaining games and get help to find a spot into the post season playoffs.
The Packers were quick to start again, jumping out to 7-0 and 14-7 leads, but like previous games, the Packers fell apart. Nothing seemed to go right for the Packers the rest of the way.
The Green Bay defense couldn’t get a take/away, while Tramon Williams turned it over on a punt return which gave the ball back to the Vikings. Minnesota wouldn’t score after going for it on fourth and short, but they did take more time off the clock.
The Packers have struggled on third downs all season and finished 2 for 10 on Sunday night, scoring just three points in the second half. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers threw for just 198 yards and one touchdown. He missed throws he usually makes, including a pass to a wide open Davante Adams in the end zone in the fourth quarter, that was overthrown.
The Packers have had a number of issues on offense, some of it can be related to play-calling. But Rodgers is paid more than any player in the league to make plays and he’s not making enough of them. It’s something that will have to change immediately if the Packers have any hopes of the playoffs.
Defensively, the Packers had no answer for Kirk Cousins, who completed 29 of 38 for 342 yards and three touchdowns. The Packers struggled to get any heat on Cousins, sacking him only two times with both being coverage sacks by Kenny Clark and Dean Lowery.
Adam Thielen had 8 catches for 125 yards and a touchdown. Stefon Diggs had 8 catches for 77 yards and a touchdown and Kyle Rudolph had 7 receptions for 63 yards.
Injuries continue to come into the picture for the Packers, losing left tackle David Bakhtiari to a knee injury. Bakhtiari returned to the game, then left again and finished on the sidelines.
Whether the Packers get any help down the stretch remains to be seen. But winning five straight games might be an even taller order.
The Packers have lost back-to-back games twice this season. They have never won two straight on the season.
It would appear likely that the Packers chances at the playoffs are very small and the Mike McCarthy era could be coming to an end soon as the Packers are facing the possibility of missing the playoffs in back-to-back seasons.