Preseason Game 4: Packers fall 27-13

The Green Bay Packers lost to the Tennessee Titans 27-13 in tonight's preseason finale. Eight Packers did not play tonight, and the starters played only one series. We have some notes from before, during and after the game.

Postgame notes

- Among a handful of injuries, first-round pick B.J. Raji exited in the first half with a sprained ankle. Coach Mike McCarthy said he'd know more in the morning but said he had no reason to believe the injury was serious.

- In their first game of the preseason, linebackers Nick Barnett and Clay Matthews III both had two tackles. McCarthy said "they definitely moved very well" but needs to look at film to see how they got off blocks. "You definitely felt their presence. I thought they definitely made an impact when they were on the field," McCarthy said.

Said Barnett: "It felt good, getting out there and getting some live action, some live contact and executing the defense. I had a couple little schematic things, but other than that, I thought I did good."

- The second quarter "was not the type of football we were looking for." The Packers were outscored 17-0 in the period to fall behind 20-3 at halftime.

- The defense did a good job of "battling" with injuries to Raji, safety Anthony Smith (concussion), cornerback Pat Lee (knee) and cornerback Brandon Underwood (stinger). Lee said he hyperextended his knee on his impressive 41-yard kickoff return and hopes to be back in a week or so.

- Aaron Rodgers and the No. 1 offense went three-and-out for their first (and only) possession. "I think we established an identity as an offense. We had one punt in 13 possessions, and did a great job. Ran the ball well, threw the ball well, protected well."

- By the numbers: Tyrell Sutton was the leading rusher with 37 yards on 10 carries compared to nine for 34 for Kregg Lumpkin and six for 11 for DeShawn Wynn. Jeremy Kapinos averaged 52.2 yards per punt but two touchbacks gave him a net average of 38.8. Desmond Bishop led the team in tackles with eight.

- Brian Brohm completed 20-of-28 passes but had only two completions of at least 10 yards: 13 to Jake Allen and a 33-yard catch and run by Jordy Nelson.

- Ruvell Martin muffed a punt late in the game for a turnover. Martin has barely taken a rep as a punt returner in training camp. And speaking of special teams, Mason Crosby hit 2-of-3 field goals, with his miss coming from 53 yards.

- The final cuts to 53 players must be made by 3 p.m. Central on Saturday.

Final: Titans 27, Packers 13

With the starters playing only one series, the Packers lost 27-13 at Tennessee in the preseason finale on Thursday night.

Green Bay finished the exhibition slate at 3-1: The same record as when they won Super Bowl XXXI following the 1996 season.

The young players and backups played most of the game, with this being their last chance to shine ahead of Saturday's final roster cuts.

With starting corners Al Harris and Charles Woodson getting the night off and with Pat Lee (knee) and Brandon Underwood (stinger) exiting with injuries, receiver Brett Swain had to play had to play most of the second half at cornerback.

Brian Brohm played most of the game at quarterback, completing 20-of-28 passes but for only 154 yards. The Titans won the rushing battle 174-87.

Halftime: Titans 20, Packers 3

The starters played only the first half. Aaron Rodgers completed 2-of-3 passes but failed to get a first down, and the Packers punted. The defense - minus starting corners Al Harris and Charles Woodson - gave up a field goal.

Brian Brohm led the offense to a field goal on his first possession by completing his first five passes before the drive stalled inside the Titans' 20-yard line.

B.J. Raji exited with an ankle injury but coach Mike McCarthy didn't have an update.

The Packers were outgained 199-123 in the first half, including 117-26 on the ground. Brohm was 10-of-12 for 95 yards, but most of those were easy completion in which he was able to throw to his No. 1 read.

Pregame notes

— Several players will not face the Titans. Veteran cornerbacks Charles Woodson and Al Harris will get the night off. Running back Brandon Jackson (ankle), safeties Charlie Peprah (knee) and Aaron Rouse (hamstring), cornerback/returner Will Blackmon (thigh), receiver Greg Jennings (concussion) and defensive end Justin Harrell (back) are out. Quarterback Matt Flynn (shoulder) will be limited to holding for kicks.

James Jones will start in place of Jennings, Tramon Williams and Brandon Underwood will start at cornerback, and Korey Hall is replacing John Kuhn at fullback. Without Blackmon returning kicks, DeShawn Wynn, Tyrell Sutton and maybe Pat Lee will return kickoffs, and Brett Swain and Jordy Nelson will return punts.

— This will be the eighth consecutive year in which the Packers and Titans squared off in the final game of the preseason. Generally, the Titans have used this game as a dress rehearsal while the Packers have used it to look at younger players. So, it's not a surprise that the Titans are 5-2 the previous seven years.

The Titans, however, are playing their fifth preseason game and kick off the regular season on Thursday, so there will be more of a level playing field.

— Two members of the Titans' coaching staff played for the Packers: new defensive coordinator Chuck Cecil (1988 through 1992) and assistant secondary coach Tim Hauck (1991 through 1994). Packers GM Ted Thompson played linebacker for 10 seasons for the Houston Oilers.


Live chat during the game

As he will do throughout the regular season, Packer Report publisher Bill Huber will chat live with subscribers during the game. For information on subscribing to Packer Report, click here. To join tonight's chat, which will begin shortly before the 7 p.m. Central kickoff, click here.




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