The Green Bay Packers were upset by the San Francisco 49ers in Week 1 of the 2012-13 NFL season on September 9, 2012. The 49ers won 30-22. The 49ers used a balanced offensive attack and a suffocating defense to overwhelm the Packers at Lambeau Field.
Here were some observations from that contest.
Defense: Pass Rush
The most-encouraging sign from this game was that Clay Matthews had 2.5 sacks. Charles Woodson added another 1.5 sacks. Alex Smith had to scramble away from a couple sacks.
The Packers' defensive backfield was a mess. There was so much miscommunication. How is Randy Moss uncovered in the red zone? Throughout the first half, the defensive backs were far too conservative. The 49ers were dink-and-dunking their way with no challenge whatsoever. The 49ers also had 186 rushing yards.
Offense: Run Game
Cedric Benson had nine rushes for 18 yards. The Packers were unable to create running lanes against the NFL's best run-defense in 2011.
Offense: Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers completed 30-of-44 passes for 303 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Rodgers got away with some bad decisions. Receivers continue to drop passes (looks at Jermichael Finley). Randall Cobb had nine receptions for 77 yards. He also had a 75-yard punt return for a touchdown (that should've been called back).
The Packers should've gone into the locker room with a 13-7 halftime deficit. However, Mike McCarthy was aggressive against a stout 49ers' defense. The 49ers eventually got the football back with enough time to get David Akers in range for a 63-yard field goal. The 49ers would take a 16-7 lead.
This clock mismanagement was one of the instances where the Packers were out-coached by the 49ers.
That was the most-poorly officiated football game that I've ever witnessed. Correction: it was the most-poorly officiated sports game that I've ever witnessed (boxing excluded). The only positive thing about the officiating was that it was horrendous for both teams. A double negative equals a positive?
With that said, the majority of bogus penalties went against the 49ers. The missed block in the back by Terrell Manning (#56) was a momentum changer. Without Cobb's punt return, the 49ers might have blown this game wide open.
Here's an irony: immediately after this game was finished, FOX zoomed into the Seattle Seahawks and Arizona Cardinals contest. Due to an officiating error, the Seahawks were rewarded a fourth timeout. The Cardinals held on to win.
The 49ers are the better team. A football team just beat a gimmicky team. Jim Harbaugh and Vic Fangio out-coached Mike McCarthy and Dom Capers. I'm amazed when I see the 49ers' defense swarm to the football. As a fan of defensive-minded football, they're a pleasure to watch.
For the Packers, they won't have to deal with the media attention from "16-0." The defensive backfield is a work-in-progress. It was frustrating to see them play so far off the receivers. I was encouraged with the pass rush. Then again, the 49ers' offensive line is suspect in pass protection.
It's Week 1. I'm not too concerned with it. The Week 2 game is much-more important because it's a divisional opponent. That's a must-win game. The defensive backs must tighten up their coverage. Dom Capers needs to get this straightened out.
Run Offense: F
Pass Offense: C
Run Defense: D
Pass Defense: F
Officiating: YF (You're Fired)
The Packers have a short week of preparation ahead of them. They'll host the Chicago Bears in the NFL Network Thursday Night Football opener on September 13. The Bears have a 1-0 record. They defeated the Indianapolis Colts 41-21.
Joshua Huffman graduated from Middle Tennessee State University as a marketing major in 2009. He's been a Middle Tennessee resident from 1986-88 and 2001-present. He lived in the Upper Peninsula and Northern Wisconsin from 1988-01 and for approximately eight months in 2009-10 as he completed a 20-game volunteer position with the USHL's Green Bay Gamblers. His favorite sports organizations include the Green Bay Packers, Chicago Cubs, Nashville Predators and Tennessee Titans. He can be found on Twitter HERE.
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