DENVER – Packers Coach Mike McCarthy was a study in humility following the Packers’ 29-10 loss to the Broncos on Sunday night.
“I’ll start with congratulations to the Broncos. Clearly the better team. For us, a humbling loss. Gary Kubiak had his team playing a lot faster than I had my team playing. I was not happy about the way we performed. A very humbling loss,” McCarthy said.
The Packers suffered their first loss of the season to a Broncos team that got out to a 17-0 lead and then poured on the pass rush, sacking Aaron Rodgers three times – once resulting in a safety – hurrying him seven times and knocking him to the ground repeatedly.
“Calling passes is fun. This isn’t about having fun. That wasn’t fun. You have to be able to run the ball against an excellent pass rush like Denver has,” McCarthy said, his postgame demeanor best described as resigned.
Rodgers completed 14 of 22 passes for a mere 77 yards, no touchdowns and a 69.7 passer rating. Randall Cobb was Rodgers’ leading receiver with six catches, but for just 27 yards.
“You have to compliment Denver. It was a very humbling loss. I haven’t had my (butt) kicked like that in a while,” McCarthy said.
The Packers gained just 140 total yards, as compared to the Broncos’ 500. That comparison is the telltale stat of the night.
“We didn’t break their rhythm on offense. They ran it well. The explosive gains were clearly lopsided in Denver’s favor.
You want to get into run and pass rhythm. We couldn’t sustain that,” McCarthy said.
The Packers had their best run-pass balance late in the second quarter, but they weren’t able to sustain it following the intermission. The Packers cut the Broncos’ lead to 17-10 on a 56-yard field goal to begin the second half, but the Broncos dominated the action the rest of the game.
Peyton Manning threw for 340 yards and a 96.9 passer rating. He was especially effective throwing deep. Demaryius Thomas caught eight passes for 168 yards, including one reception for 47 yards. Manning was not sacked.
“Both teams felt good and were healthy. They ran their offense. They ran it effectively. It started with the run. We needed to stop the run and get Peyton Manning off the spot. We didn’t accomplish that at all,” McCarthy said.
Denver’s C.J. Anderson rushed for 101 yards, including a 28-yard touchdown run through the middle of the Packers defense, one play after Clay Matthews left the game due to injury. Matthews would later return, but the damage was done.
Ronnie Hillman added 60 yards rushing and two touchdowns.
“We lost the game. We’re 6-1. We have to correct these things and move on,” Rodgers said. “Tonight was more about what we didn’t do. We didn’t execute in the run game, the pass game, we didn’t covert third down and got beat.”
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