Week 5 – Minnesota @ Green Bay: Four days is a long time in football

Just four days ago, Minnesota appeared to have resurrected its season. First round draft pick Teddy Bridgewater threw for 317 yards and helped the Vikings to a 41-28 upset of the Atlanta Falcons which moved them to 2-2 on the year.

Unfortunately, Bridgewater sprained his ankle in that game, and with the NFL schedule makers sending Minnesota to the not-yet-frozen tundra of Green Bay for a Thursday Night Football matchup, it was up to third string quarterback Christian Ponder to save the day.

Ponder has many things going for him, including his lovely and talented sideline reporter wife, but as far as leading an NFL team, he’s average at best. He struggled big time, throwing two first half interceptions and getting sacked six times.

Meanwhile, the Aaron Rodgers fantasy football roller coaster continued on the other side of the ball. Rodgers, a prolific fantasy scorer, turned in a stinker of a performance two weeks ago in a 19-7 loss to Detroit. His 162 yards passing would have consigned a number of fantasy players to big defeats.

But last week, the ex-Cal star rebounded with a 302-yard, four touchdown performance against Chicago and today he was back with another surgeon-like effort. He threw two first quarter touchdowns, an 8-yarder to Randall Cobb and a 66-yarder to Jordy Nelson, before tossing a second quarter TD to Davante Adams.

Truth be told, the Pack didn’t need Rodgers to do much more, which was bad news for the fantasy folk. He ended up throwing just 17 passes and completing 12 for a paltry 156 yards. Of course, there were those three touchdowns.

For a change, two of Green Bay’s much-maligned units actually stepped up. The running game came alive, led by Eddie Lacy’s 105 yards and two touchdowns, while the defense forced three turnovers, scored a touchdown and provided one of the day’s funniest highlights.

New signing Julius Peppers intercepted a Ponder pass and scrambled 49 yards for a touchdown, but then had to be told by his teammates to engage in the traditional Lambeau Leap. The exhausted big fellow did as he was told, but only made it into the stands with some help from above and below.

The Packers travel to play mercurial Miami in Week 6, while the Vikings – who hope to have Bridgewater back – will host dynamic Detroit.

Oct 2
Lambeau Field, Green Bay WI (78,054)

Minnesota 0 0 0 10 – 10
Green Bay 14 14 14 0 – 42

Passing: Christian Ponder (MIN), 222 yds, 2 INT’s
Rushing: Eddie Lacy (GB), 13 car, 105 yds, 2 TD’s
Receiving: Jordy Nelson (GB), 1 rec, 66 yds, 1 TD
Pigskin Almanac “Beer and a Brat” award: Eddie Lacy (GB)

About Ed Wyatt

Ed Wyatt grew up in Halfway, Maryland, following the Baltimore Colts like his football coach father. When he lost his Bert Jones #7 jersey at the Lincolnshire Elementary School playground, he should have taken it as an omen, since the Colts left Baltimore for Indianapolis. Ed has managed to avoid full time work by talking on the radio, smiling on the television and tapping on the keyboard of his computer. He won a number of local Emmy awards with the Seattle-based comedy show Almost Live! and hosted the Super Bowl live on Australian television for nine years. He is a graduate of Stanford University.

Comments

  1. Away teams may as well treat Thursday Night Football as a bye or extra pre-season game and play there backups. Short week plus travel means a blowout loss unless you are the vastly superior team.

    Coming up
    Colts@Texans where Texans play in their home state this week. So bank a Texans win.

    Jets @Patriots. Jets are an inferior team plus the travel hands a big edge to the Patriots. Although is the Pats lose to the Bills the week before there may be all kinds of chaos in New England leading up to this game.

    Chargers@Broncos. This game may play a part in deciding the AFC number 1 ranking so what a shame it’s not on Sunday or Monday night. If the Chargers get blownout here it should sound the death knell for TNF unless both teams are coming off a bye.

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