The first start of Brett Hundley's career did not provide many bright spots, but then again, the Packers did not win for a full month following Aaron Rodgers' broken collarbone in 2013, and still made the playoffs.
The goal right now is to learn from mistakes, and learn fast right now.
“It's a starting point for us as a football team,” coach Mike McCarthy said. “I think it clearly shows how important it is to do the little things in all three areas. We didn't accomplish that.”
The Packers' coaches spent time on self-scouting sessions with the offense critiquing the defense and vice versa.
And, while the downfield passing game was AWOL last week, Mike McCarthy argues it wasn't all about a conservative approach.
“I think we need to make sure we are focused on the facts here,” McCarthy said. “I get what the numbers say, but the offense had 50 plays and the defense had 75 plays. Hundley wasn't given a lot of opportunities.”
“We kept it in a manageable down and distance,” offensive coordinator Edgar Bennett said. “If we convert a couple of the short-yardage situations, then we are getting more opportunities and more plays. I think that helps the situation when you have more plays.”
As for the throws Hundley missed, or didn't pull the trigger on in time?
“He will do better because the majority of his issues were in the area of time clock and timing,” McCarthy said. “Some were understandable. I mean we had some protection errors that were unfortunate for him.
“You have to take in all the information. You can't let him feel the weight of the world. That's part of playing the position, I get that. Is the game plan as big as it was the week before it? Absolutely not. Frankly it's going to get smaller. We need to get more creative. At the end of the day when you call a football game you need to get the ball to your playmakers. We didn't get that done. Jordy, Davante, Marty, and Randall need to touch the ball. We didn't get that done.”
And don't forget, Aaron Rodgers lost 3 of his first 5 starts and Brett Favre lost 4 of his first 6 starts.
“Use Aaron for an example,” McCarthy said. “When he started in 2008, you were on his ass until he won a Super Bowl. And now once he wins the Super Bowl, he has to play that way all the time. It's just part of the deal here and Hundley has to remember where he is playing quarterback at. That's real.”
Another key to success when the team picks up play a week from Monday could be a healthy offensive line. In 7 games, the Packers have started 7 different line combinations. Lane Taylor hopes to be back following the bye to give the team its full compliment of starters for just the 2nd time this season. The only previous time all hands were on deck was in Minnesota, where 3 of the 5 starters then dropped out before the game was done.