Frustrated Packers meet fitting end at Ford Field
DETROIT, Mich. - It was a fitting end to a frustrating Packers season Sunday, one which went in like a lion and out like a lamb in their 35-11 loss Sunday to Detroit at Ford Field.
"Obviously we didn’t end the way we wanted to," quarterback Brett Hundley said. "We didn’t make the playoffs, we didn’t finish strong, we didn’t win our last two, we finished 7-9. That’s not what you want."
A team which prides itself on playing fundamental Green Bay Packers football showed exactly how far away they’ve deviated since their 4-1 start at Dallas back in week 5.
In total, the team committed four backbreaking turnovers, two by the offense in the red zone early, halting the road squad's ability to take a commanding lead early. Without star quarterback Aaron Rodgers, it’s easy evidence of why this team finished under .500 for the first time since 2008. Mental and uncharacteristic mistakes keeping head coach Mike McCarthy's squad from winning winnable football games.
"Very disappointing loss," McCarthy said. "I think the starting point was the -4 turnover ratio, the way we took care of the football today was unacceptable."
In what could be Dom Capers final game as the Packers defensive coordinator, the unit continued to give up big plays. On Sunday it was three passing strikes from Matthew Stafford of 50+ yards, eventually leading to a trio of touchdowns from the veteran quarterback.
"We have to be more exact in everything that we do," defensive tackle Mike Daniels said. "We can’t get more basic than that, we need to get back to the fundamentals. We've got the guys, we've got it done before. This year we just happened to come up shorter than we have in the past."
The Packers have already started to look to the 2018 campaign. The team resigned wide receiver Davante Adams & center Corey Linsley this week and several reports say the team will part ways with Capers. The first of many moves in what should be a busy off-season in Titletown.
"Not so much fuel as much as our standard we want to play up to," Linsley said. "I think that moving forward it's going to drive us to play back up to our standard."
Plus there's the other incentives like finishing 2-4 in the NFC North and being swept by the Lions for the first time since 1991.
"Clearly frustration, it is what it is," wide receiver Randall Cobb said. "The season is over now, probably take the next month or so looking at the season and the missed opportunities."
Opportunities the Packers will look to grab hold of, when they return to the football field next September.