About the Author
Recent posts by Dan Arkush
PFW executive editor and resident Packers expert Dan Arkush identifies three players or position groups on the rise as well as three players or position groups going in the opposite direction.
QB Matt Flynn: While Flynn's stock with the Packers remains the same with likely league MVP Aaron Rodgers entrenched as the starting QB, his stock in the upcoming free-agent market is soaring after his record-breaking performance in place of Rodgers vs. the Lions. The 26-year-old Flynn was masterful vs. Detroit, setting team highs in TD passes (six, including four of at least 35 yards and a game-winning four-yard score to TE Jermichael Finley with 1:10 remaining) and passing yards (480).
WR Jordy Nelson: Truth be told, Nelson is far more deserving of a Pro Bowl berth than teammate Greg Jennings, who missed the last three regular-season games with a knee injury. Nelson was Flynn's primary target against the Lions, turning three of his nine catches for 162 yards into scores. He finished the regular season with a team-leading 15 TD catches (six in the last four games).
OLT Chad Clifton: After missing nearly three months with hamstring and back injuries, the veteran starting left tackle was back at his customary spot in the regular-season finale, playing all 25 snaps in the first three series. While he struggled a bit, he was no worse for wear at the end of the game and was proclaimed the starting left tackle for the postseason the next day by head coach Mike McCarthy.
CB Tramon Williams: After doing a marvelous job defending Lions star WR Calvin Johnson in the first game this season against the Lions on Thanksgiving Day, Williams was taken to lunch by the man known as "Megatron" on Sunday. Johnson had his way with Williams, catching 11 passes for a career-high 244 yards and one score. With 3:37 remaining in the game, Williams got hit with a 36-yard pass-interference call that eventually led to a TD by Lions TE Tony Scheffler that gave the Lions a 41-38 lead.
ROLB Erik Walden: The steady fall from grace continued for Walden, a free agent unlikely to be retained. The starter at right outside linebacker most of the season, Walden had another terrible day at the office, getting faked out on an end-around and getting called for a stupid late hit right after a sack by rookie OLB Vic So'oto.
DE Mike Neal: Probably the team's most disappointing player this season, the 2010 second-round pick who was expected to replace the departed Cullen Jenkins was active on Sunday but failed to even show up on the stat sheet.