Brett Hundley, Packers Crumble in Season Finale

Uninspired. Lackadaisical. Putrid.

There are all kinds of words that can be used to describe the Green Bay Packers' season finale in Detroit on Sunday, but those three likely stand out among the rest. In fact, they were the only things standing out for the team missing five starters.

Clear-cut and to the point, unlike some of the decisions that will more than likely be made at 1265 Lombardi Avenue this offseason.

One of those changes is expected to be the firing or retirement of defensive coordinator Dom Capers, as reported Saturday night by ESPN's Adam Schefter. If anything, Capers built his case for potential removal with his unit's performance against the Lions the day after the news of his inevitable fate.

The Packers surrendered 27 unanswered points to the Lions after jumping out to a 3-0 lead in the first quarter. Their first three offensive drives showed they had no problems moving the ball down the field -- nine plays, 30 yards on their first drive, eight plays, 45 yards on the second and five plays, 59 yards on the third -- had it not been for costly turnovers jeopardizing potential scores.

Quarterback Brett Hundley's first of two interceptions came on the Packers' first drive. It was tipped off the hands of running back Jamaal Williams and into the waiting hands of Lions linebacker Jarrad Davis. 

Later in the first quarter, the Packers' third drive was stalled when Hundley fumbled after diving for a first down and having Lions safety Glover Quin punch the ball free. In the first quarter alone, the Packers lost -- at the most -- 14 points. Even if they were forced to settle for field goals on those aforementioned drives, six points could've changed the flow of the game from an early standpoint.

The turnovers were the lowest point of the day and potentially the season for Hundley, who hadn't thrown an interception in a road start this season until Sunday.

"We just didn't make the plays that needed to be made," Hundley said after the game. "We just stopped ourselves."

After recording a 30.2 passer rating in last week's loss to the Minnesota Vikings, Hundley didn't do much to improve. He sported a 59.7 rating against the Lions, which is still better than three of his other starts this season. 

According to Pro Football Focus, Hundley recorded a passer rating of 10.7 when he was under pressure and 92.0 on plays without pressure.

"I gave it my all, and that's all I can do. Obviously, it didn't end the way we wanted it to. 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.

"From here, we just have to regroup and figure some stuff out and go from there."

The Packers did get a look at journeyman quarterback Joe Callahan, who would naturally be the third-string quarterback with Aaron Rodgers in the lineup. For now, he was Hundley's backup and despite desires that have been well-voiced amongst fans, has yet to see the field.

That changed with about two minutes left on Sunday when the Packers pulled Hundley and allowed Callahan a brief audition on the Packers' final seven-play drive that netted just 11 yards. On that drive, Callahan completed 5-of-7 passes for just 11 yards. He averaged 1.6 yards per completion, essentially silencing the Callahan Crowd -- at least for now.

On top of some staff decisions the Packers may very well make, there's a possibility they'll look into a more formidable backup for Rodgers, who missed nine games this season with a broken collarbone in his throwing shoulder.

"For me, this is the first year that I've ever gotten to play as a starter in the NFL," Hundley said. "It was fun, it was exciting. There are ups, there are downs. There are great times, there are low moments. Through it all, I've learned a lot through these eight, nine games, and it's something that I'll hold with me forever.

"I'll be able to learn a lot this offseason from it and get better moving forward."

__________________________

Zachary Jacobson is a staff writer/reporter for Cheesehead TV. He's the voice of The Leap on iTunes and can be heard on The Scoop KLGR 1490 AM every Saturday morning. He's also a contributor on the Pack-A-Day Podcast. He can be found on Twitter via @ZachAJacobson or contacted through email at [email protected].

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Comments (41)

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KenEllis's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:02 pm

Since 2010.

Uninspired (Ted). Lackadaisical (Mike). Putrid (Dom).

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Marxman's picture

December 31, 2017 at 11:34 pm

Close: Mike, Dom, Tom

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badaxed's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:06 pm

Wauuuggggghhhhhh! (Sound of throwing up) this team is putrid and the smell of this teams effort is enough to make anyone throw up. Time to fire the cooks and the kitchen help.

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Bearmeat's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:08 pm

I said is before and I'll say it again:

The end of the TT/MM/DC/AR Packers occurred in January of 2015 after THAT game in SEA. It's been stale ever since. Understandable really. Teams have hit the reset button over less. GB should have done so. They won't win it all again until there is completely new blood.

Glad Dom is gone. Now finish cleaning house. Or ARod will turn into Dan Marino with one ring.

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mcduff67's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:10 pm

As a long time Packer backer, I started my faithful belief with the "Ice-Bowl" Bret Hundley needs to be traded in this off season. He has failed in every facet of the game. this is no longer Oh well there is next year. The coaching staff is no longer getting the job done. It was a hard to swallow year.

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Marxman's picture

December 31, 2017 at 11:45 pm

Trade him for an undrafted rookie punter and a pack of gum?

I can't believe they rode him til the very end (surely for the reason you stated, but his value only depreciated exponentially, imo).

I can honestly say I can't remember the last time I've seen such poor QB play. No awareness, blitz recognition, timing, vision, or accuracy over 5 yards. Receivers dropped a few easy balls surely because they were shocked it hit them in the hands.

I'd take Trent Dilweg over this guy.

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mcduff67's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:10 pm

As a long time Packer backer, I started my faithful belief with the "Ice-Bowl" Bret Hundley needs to be traded in this off season. He has failed in every facet of the game. this is no longer Oh well there is next year. The coaching staff is no longer getting the job done. It was a hard to swallow year.

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OrganLeroy's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:33 pm

Who's gonna' trade for Hundley, the Salvation Army?

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GVPacker's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:58 pm

Ted Thompson might be able to get a $10 Dunkin Donuts Gift Card for Hundley but thats about it!

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badaxed's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:08 pm

"Ted Thompson might be able to get a $10 Dunkin Donuts Gift Card for Hundley but thats about it!"

Great trade to for it.

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HankScorpio's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:16 pm

I wouldn't even try to barter them up to $20, Just take it and bring in a nice treat to a select offseason meeting.

"The donuts are on John Dorsey!"

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:13 pm

Trade him trade him nobody wants him

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HankScorpio's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:16 pm

Sounds good!

I'd take a bag of practice footballs.

I'm not sure anyone will offer.

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HankScorpio's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:14 pm

It didn't take long to see that Hundley was bad. After a couple of games, it was obvious that things would go badly south with him at QB. It did to the tune of a 3-8 finish.

And yet we still did not see Callahan until the final 2 minutes of the year. Since I don't believe MM is a dummy, that must be his way of saying Callahan was no better or even worse.

Both should be cut. A guy like Matt Flynn, who was .500 in his Packer career, is not terribly hard to find. Or maybe I should say it is not a terribly lofty goal to find him. Either way, the Packers need to be better prepared at backup QB in 2018.

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OrganLeroy's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:36 pm

Callahan was a fan favorite that pre season because he's a gamer and plays hard, BUT he's an UDFA for a reason, to think he would've been any better than Hundley is asinine and only shows a lack of football intelligence, neither one of them are 2nd string material!

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HankScorpio's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:04 pm

Hundley was a 5th round pick for a reason, too. That isn't that far off UDFA.

So the option was fail with the same bad QB week after week or fail with a different one a time or two. If you think one side of that is so clear cut that you're willing to insult anyone that disagrees, god bless you.

Callahan would have likely sucked just as bad. But all we really know for sure is that Hundley did suck so bad he cost the Packers games and he was used ahead of Callahan until the final 2 minutes of the year.

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Marxman's picture

December 31, 2017 at 11:57 pm

Like I stated above, I can't remember the last time I've seen QB play this bad. His only good numbers were because of YAC.

I can honestly only remember 2 really good throws. Both were to Adams vs. Chicago.

Callahan couldn't have done much worse than an NFL record 160+ throws at home without a TD. A record from the 1950's. They went for broke trying to drive up his market value and it fell through. Joe had already been cut twice from other teams, but he seems to have better instincts at least.

Guess we (and Joe) never know. Shame.

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lou's picture

January 01, 2018 at 10:24 am

Marxman, I grew up within walking distance of the original City Stadium and have been watching QB play since the Parilli//Rote/Starr days and the only worse QB play I have seen was Jim Del Gaizo who Devine acquired for 2 #2 draft picks from the Dolphins after he had back to back good exhibition games backing up Bob Greise (that was his entire body of work). Del Gaizo like Hundley had no anticipation and could not step up in the pocket and still holds the record for being sacked for a safety in the end zone vs the Rams on consecutive possesions, both by Fred Dryer who had he not become a TV star that would have been his major accomplishment.

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GVPacker's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:03 pm

This is the second time Teddy and Mikey M failed to prepare for a catastrophic injury to A-rod. And once again the braintrust gets caught with its jock strap around their ankles. Time to bring in a veteran qb who can at least give them a respectable chance to win a game against an average team!

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HankScorpio's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:10 pm

Both times were based in over-estimating MM's ability to turn a sow's ear into a silk purse. Graham Harrell was no better than Hundley. Both were much-hyped "MM QB School" students. Both failed their standardized tests.

At least in 2013 they recognized it at final cuts and took steps to correct it by adding Seneca Wallace. He might not have done anything but he never got a chance to show one way or the other.

They really need to take the position much more seriously than they have. They could have turned 2-3 of those losses into wins with a backup that rises to the level of mediocre.

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GVPacker's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:36 pm

Good point Hank, McCarthy is no QB guru that's been proven this year! Draft and Develop... na more like Draft And Disappoint!

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Turophile's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:26 pm

And this too shall pass
(sometimes attributed to King Solomon)

It was painful, but eventually it ends.

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jimtalkbox's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:32 pm

We got an extra preseason game for 2018, but it was today. Offseason priorities:

1.) Make Rodgers the highest paid QB in the league.
2.) Get a new D-Coordinator
3.) Find a way to get better at rushing the passer
4.) Solidify the right side of the OL

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Roadrunner23's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:38 pm

Yep, throw that season in the dumpster, but there is hope going into 2018 as of mid-night.
>A new Defensive Coordinator and new attitude on Defense
>A bunch o' draft choices and drafting higher than usual
>After a season like this there will be a "soul searching" from the management to the players, this is separates the men from the boys in the NFL. Im banking on positive changes in 2018
>Some young players who blossomed Jamaal Williams, Justin McCray, Blake Martinez, Kenny Clark, Justin Vogel,
Aaron Jones, Damarious Randall
>The return of the man: Aaron Rodgers
Bring it on 2018 - Happy New Year!

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:10 pm

They will propably promote someone from within the organization. .lol

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jhalwas611.com's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:44 pm

I believe that if Mark Murphy doesn't see a need for changes through out the organization then he needs to step down. Lack of depth and uninspired play just didn't cut it this year. The lack of improvement in Hundley's play exposes a lack of coaching. I think Ted needs to let younger minds find the right talent and MM needs to get better assistants.

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Mags's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:28 pm

Murphy is more worried about building ice skating rinks and sledding hills.

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HankScorpio's picture

January 01, 2018 at 10:11 am

Good. It beats him meddling in football operations and distracts the Board of Directors from wanting to do the same.

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badaxed's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:49 pm

Letting Callahan play in the last two minutes is like letting someone come off the bench with 60 seconds left in a basketball game down by 30 points and expecting him to hit the three pointers. A true test would have been to at least have given him an opportunity at least playing the second half. McCarthy reminds me of the character who played "Custer" in the movie "little big man" "Once a Custer decision has been made there can be no reversal".

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dobber's picture

January 01, 2018 at 05:40 am

"Letting Callahan play in the last two minutes is like letting someone come off the bench with 60 seconds left in a basketball game down by 30 points and expecting him to hit the three pointers."

Sorry, but nobody expected Callahan to come in and win that game, and this isn't our 7th grade kids playing ball, where we expect that even the poindexter at the end of the bench with knock-knees has to be allowed to play at some point as a reward for sticking out the season. There's no "so-and-so deserves a half of football" rule.

What we learned by MMs sticking with Hundley is just how little the staff actually thinks of Callahan. If that's the case, they needed to find a vet to sit behind Hundley when ARod got hurt...just long enough to learn the offense enough to take over after the first Lions game or maybe the Baltimore game when it was clear that Hundley couldn't play. But if they felt Callahan was really so bad, he should have never come off the PS.

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Marxman's picture

January 01, 2018 at 12:03 pm

Granted he played DIV III at Wesley, but how bad can a guy be throwing for over 5,000 yds and 55 TDs in 12 games and rushing for another 7? The guy threw 7 TDs in the 1st half one of those games. He obviously has SOME talent.

It just baffles me they didn't give the guy a shot when they had nothing to lose.

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Malland56's picture

December 31, 2017 at 05:58 pm

You know what I think was a damn slap in the face and disrespectful of a player on the Packers was MM putting in Callahan with 2 minutes left in the game.

If I had a rubber hose I'd whip him with it. Why the hell didn't he put him in the 2nd half at least. We could have probably watched a better game. But no, Hundly is his pet project. Well if he hasn't shown anything good since he has started all those games this season what makes you so sure he will be better next year. He has had what, 3 years now and not shown me anything that makes him a good starting QB in the NFL.

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:01 pm

I agree totally that was a crappy thing to do by Mike McCarthy

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dylan schurman's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:58 pm

\

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Roadrunner23's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:02 pm

Callahan Played - Season Complete haha :)

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

December 31, 2017 at 06:03 pm

I mean that tells you right there that he's keeping Brett Hundley next year because if it was me I'd let him play last two minutes because that's the last time you're ever going to play again buddy

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Houndog's picture

December 31, 2017 at 07:33 pm

Hundley said. " There are downs, there are low moments, and it's something that I'll hold with me forever. "I'll be able to learn a lot from it"

Yes Brett, learn from it, and then get on with your career managing a Jiffy Lube franchise!

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Bure9620's picture

December 31, 2017 at 11:41 pm

Not giving up on Biegel as a pass rusher. His season and development was essentially lost. His measurables are there and I still think he can be a true edge rusher. Gilbert needs to be on the 53 next year, he's disruptive on every play. I'm Also excited about Montravius next year, crazy athleticism, he could have some interieor rush to him. I really like our young D-line.

Other than that, this defense is hot garbage. They lack talent, they lack real veteran leadership, there are no playmakers, they're poorly coached AND lack effort!!! They are a mishmosh of washed up veterans, JAGs and guys whom think they're better than they are. (Ha Ha, yes thats you). They need a hard ass DC. One whom will get after them. Tell them what they are. I have literally have SEEN lack of effort these last 2 weeks and that is simply unacceptable in professional sports. It's just not professional. I don't see any significant improvement in '18 without a great draft and dipping into FA.

Hundley, CM3 (there's an out), RR, and one reciever (Jordy or Cobb) need to be released.

Really not sure what to do with Bulaga. I believe he is done. Too many injuries. He carries a large cap number and releasing him would be a significant dead money hit, TT will not do that.

Do not resign RR, Brooks, Dial, House, Janis, and if Burnett is resigned do not break the bank.

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Ferrari Driver's picture

January 01, 2018 at 02:58 am

There is a resistance to change in the Packers management.

About the most likely change for next year is Ticket Prices will go up in 2018

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bodei1newbie1's picture

January 01, 2018 at 04:45 am

myself i can't wait for the draft and let's see if ted will trade his top pick for lower draft picks let's wait and see

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

January 06, 2018 at 08:13 pm

Just cut him and move on!!

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