Sherman's numbers take beating

Records at home and in playoffs are mediocre

Though Mike Sherman insisted Wednesday that his team was ready to play Monday night against the Baltimore Ravens, the Packers showed no motivation from the get-go against a similarly subpar team and endured the franchise's most lopsided defeat since a 61-7 rout imposed by Chicago 25 years ago.

"Everything went as planned, the walkthroughs, the meetings," Sherman said. "I had no inclination that we would play this poorly."

Green Bay's fifth-rated defense gave up a season-high 435 yards as the offensively challenged Ravens set a team record for points.

"All season, we haven't given in to the adversity. (Monday), at times, we gave in to all of the negatives," defensive end Aaron Kampman said.

Added cornerback Ahmad Carroll: "We got behind and just kind of laid down. Defensively, we were horrible. I don't even want to watch this film."

Fullback William Henderson, one of only a handful of long-tenured veterans on the team, shared Kampman and Carroll's frustration and went so far as to call out teammates afterward for quitting.

Worse yet, the humiliation unfolded in front of a national TV audience.

"We normally play on 'Monday Night Football' pretty good and have a show," veteran receiver Donald Driver said. "But, instead, the Baltimore Ravens had a show, and we were just there."

At 3-11, the Packers are in danger of finishing with their worst record since the 1958 team went 1-10-1. They wind up the season playing host to Chicago on Christmas Day and Seattle on New Year's Day - a pair of division-leading teams vying for home-field advantage in the NFC playoffs.

General Manager Ted Thompson has been noncommittal about Sherman's future, other than the sign of good faith shown just before the regular season by extending his contract two years through the 2007 season.

Since then, however, Sherman's solid track record as a head coach has taken a big hit. He went 53-27 in the regular season his first five years with the Packers, including three straight NFC North titles from 2002-04.

While those are redeeming credentials that invariably work in Sherman's favor, his resume is pocked by a 2-4 record in the postseason, as well as a dubious 12-13 mark at once-inhospitable Lambeau Field since the end of the 2002 season.

The unequivocal embarrassment of Monday night left the Packers with a 1-7 road record this season, their poorest in 26 years.

Even though Thompson says it's a full body of work from which he'll base his decision with regard to Sherman's future, the old adage that "you're only as good (or bad) as your last game" may not be discounted so quickly.


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