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Boomer Esiason on D&C: Packers coach Mike McCarthy missed opportunity

12.20.10 at 9:46 am ET
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CBS Sports NFL analyst Boomer Esiason checked in with the Dennis & Callahan show Monday morning to talk about the Patriots’ 31-27 victory over the Packers and other NFL news. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Esiason said he was impressed with Packers quarterback Matt Flynn, who exposed the Patriots’ problems on defense. “The young man played a fantastic football game. I don’t know how else to put it,” Esiason said. “But it kind of shows you the Patriots’ Achilles’ heel. To me, if they’re playing against a team that has a good pass offense and they can’t get any pass rush ‘€” no matter who that quarterback is, especially if it is the Green Bay Packers, with that great group of wide receivers ‘€” they can move the ball down the field. I think we saw yesterday they had trouble getting off the field on third down. I’m sure it was just frustrating for Patriots fans to watch it.

“But at the end of the day, really what you saw is you saw a team that was led by a veteran quarterback who could make the big plays in the big spots. I never really was worried that the Patriots were going to lose the game. I just was more amazed at how well Matt Flynn did play for that 58-minute stretch.”

The Packers had a chance to put the Patriots in a deep hole in the fourth quarter, but on fourth down at the 1-yard line, they played it safe and kicked a field goal. Esiason questioned the Packers coach for that call. “To me, Mike McCarthy gave in right there,” he said. “I thought with all my heart that with the way that they were running it, they way that [John] Kuhn was getting yardage, the way that Matt Flynn was standing tall in the pocket, that they were going to go for it. I was thinking that he probably went into this game saying, ‘When I get the opportunity, I’m going to go for it.’ And you know what? When the opportunity knocked, he decided to go against I believe what his pregame plan was.”

In other NFL action Sunday, the Giants blew a 21-point lead in the fourth quarter and lost to the Eagles on a punt return for a touchdown by DeSean Jackson with no time left. “This thing was just an absolute and total meltdown,” Esiason said. “And you know, guys, it really could be an organization-changer if the Giants don’t come back and play well the next two weeks.”

Esiason said it will be interesting to see where the Giants go from here. “Either they respond, and Tom Coughlin keeps his job and the team responds to him and really puts forth a great effort. Or, it’s a collapse, and it will go down as one of the great collapses ‘€” or one of the worst collapses, however you want to look at it ‘€” in Giant history,” he said.

Added Esiason: “I was a part of that epic loss to the Dolphins in ’94 [the Dan Marino fake-spike game], and there’s never a day where it doesn’t seem like ‘€” during the football season, anyway ‘€” that I’m not reminded of it. And I remember how sick I felt that next day. I can’t even imagine how Matt Dodge, the punter, feels today for not punting that ball out of bounds.”

Read More: boomer esiason, Matt Flynn, Mike McCarthy, Tom Coughlin
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