Clear Eyes….Heavy Hearts

Fellow Packers blogger packersgeeks was at the game yesterday (read all of his game thoughts here.) He had an interesting observation that you couldn’t see watching on TV:

“Let me say this up top here before delving into more detail – the team looked weighed down emotionally. Occasionally guys would try to get the crowd pumped up by waving their arms on the sideline, but most of the times I looked over at our sideline the general emotion level looked flat to me. After a series ended, players were walking off the field – or walking onto the field. I didn’t see much jumping up and down or playoff excitement going on. (The one exception to that of course was Jarrett Bush – and even though he’s always like that, at least he was busy being intense out there.)  I am not necessarily accusing the guys of not trying – but I am saying that something seemed to be interfering with their collective emotion out there and I don’t think it’s a stretch to say the tragedy involving Michael Philbin may have been part of that. I also think this may have affected the team’s ability to recover from their mistakes. Yes the mistakes killed us, but great teams (like the Saints yesterday) can usually collect themselves and get back on track. We didn’t do that at all today and it seemed more a mental factor than anything.”

I don’t want to seem like I’m looking for an excuse, but weren’t you feeling this while watching the game? Lang loses his father after battling a long illness, then Philbin loses his son unexpectedly. We’ve seen people use their emotions to propel inspiring performances (Brett Favre after his father died is the ultimate example). But sometimes the burden is too much. Maybe this was one of those times.

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