Sydney Speaks! What was needed!

Former Packers assistant coach and fullback Harry Sydney provides an analysis of the offense, defense and coaching in the wake of Green Bay's victory over the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.

Every now and then things just fall in place and that's what happened when the Packers and Seahawks met. The Packers needed to face a team that was one dimensional and that's what the football gods did for the Packers. This team needed to get some confidence. I know that sounds crazy but it's not. The Packers needed to get a chance to believe what they are doing is working because sometimes it's not just "coach talk," it's fact. Of course I will explain:

Coaching — For a while now Mike McCarthy has been saying that they were going to clean up the penalties and they did, especially on the offensive line. I believe they only had a couple. Then he said that he really wanted to run the ball and finally he did, even though the numbers weren't big for Grant, it wasn't for lack of trying.

McCarthy had the offense ready to play. I could see it in the way Aaron Rodgers stayed patient in the passing attack. The Seahawks, at times, would only rush three and give up the underneath, and that's exactly what the Packers did as Rodgers took advantage of the sidelines getting the ball early in Donald Driver's hands.

Defensively, Bob Sanders blitzed early and probably would have had more, but didn't need to because the front four were getting plenty of pressure. In my opinion, that was a smart move because it allowed them to regain confidence in their abilities. Trust me, after three straight losses and not many sacks that game will give them a shot in the arm and it couldn't happen at a better time with the Indianapolis Colts coming into town.

The only issues I had with any coaching decision was when they were going to go for a long field goal and used a timeout in the first half. At first I thought they were going to snap it to Mason Crosby and he was going to attempt a pooch punt, but when they called the timeout I knew they were serious. Thank goodness they thought about it because the last thing they wanted to do was to give a team that was in Seattle's situation hope. As coaches you never want to give an underdog any opportunity to believe it can win when there's no way it is supposed to. That was the best timeout used this year so far!!!

Players — Let's start with the offense, which is being led by a very poised Aaron Rodgers who just seems to be getting better and better. I really like the way he stays patient in the game and never forces it all the while realizing that sooner or later the big play will happen and it did as he and Greg Jennings connected for another long touchdown.

I know that Rodgers seems to hold the ball too long like when he got sacked and fumbled and I know he will improve that with time. Remember that was only his sixth start in the NFL.

It was good to see Ryan Grant get 33 carries, but I would hope that in time there would be more production with the numbers of carries. Ryan seems to be rushing himself and nothing he is doing seems natural. Once he stops pressing I think he will make better decisions because he's leaving a bunch of yards on the field.

I thought the offensive line did a very good job for the most part, giving Aaron time to throw and allowing the backs room to run. It was good to see Driver being part of the mix as well. I like how Jordy Nelson has filled in nicely has he has become another weapon for McCarthy. I also think that Greg Jennings is quietly becoming one of the best receivers in the league. Even though he leads in many categories, he hasn't gotten the respect he deserves, but if he continues to play this way he will.

On the other side of the ball it was nice to see Aaron Kampman get a couple of sacks and get rewarded for his hard work. I want to say that this defense played great, but I can't because it played against a horrible offensive team. This defense was supposed to play good against a team that can't throw with it's third string quarterback. Having said that I think that cornerback Tramon Williams has played better than anyone could have expected and that Charles Woodson is at Pro Bowl form with four interceptions already, which reinforces what McCarthy believes about his defense.

With Indy coming in on Sunday, I think the win over the Seahawks was exactly WHAT WAS NEEDED to turn things around.

Harry Sydney is a former fullback and assistant coach for the Green Bay Packers. E-mail him at

Packer Report Top Stories