Not everyone shares that opinion Green Bay Packers T-Shirts , as Greinke has some social anxiety issues and he rubs a lot of people the wrong way; but he’s a fascinating quote-machine and almost certainly one of the most cerebral, and interesting people in baseball. Greinke has always had a deep interest in scouting and Sabermetrics, and in his brief stint with the Brewers he was a fixture in their draft war room. Perhaps my favorite thing Greinke ever did, was to conduct an experiment with his pitching over the course of a few seasons. Greinke has been good for ages, but it was never enough for him to be good — he also wanted a deep understanding of why he was good and how he could get better.For those of you who don’t follow baseball, we know that there are a few things that pitchers have control over and a few things they don’t. That’s a bit of an oversimplification, and modern research has revealed that it’s more like there are some things they control a great deal, and some things they control less — but the point stands, and at the time Greinke did his little experiment he relied on FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching):”I try to get ahead of the count without leaving it run down the middle in a person’s power zone... That helps me not walk guys, and then, when I get two strikes, I try to strike guys out. And that’s how I try to pitch, to keep my FIP as low as possible.”The FIP stats are strikeouts, walks, and home runs, and historically FIP is a better predictor of future ERA than ERA itself. Greinke’s theory was that by focusing on the elements of FIP, that he could make himself even more efficient than he already was. That’s not how it worked out.Greinke’s FIP did decrease significantly but his ERA didn’t, due to an increased Batting Average on Balls in Play (BABIP). BABIP is usually a fairly random statistic, fluctuating with a few bloop singles or diving catches https://www.thepackersfanshop.com/hats , but in this case it’s more likely that Greinke’s strategy was having some unforeseen consequences. When you focus on raising strikeouts and limiting walks above all else, hitters are going to know that you will be throwing strikes, and strikes are easier to hit and hit hard. Greinke doesn’t suffer failure well, and he eventually abandoned the experiment, returning to his former approach and repertoire, with extremely great success. FIP is a good statistic for quantifying a pitcher’s production, and it’s not controversial that strikeouts are good for a pitcher, while walks and home runs are bad. So why didn’t Greinke’s strategy work, and what does any of this have to do with Aaron Rodgers?FIP and InterceptionsThe problem with pitching to FIP is that FIP isn’t a recipe on how to pitch. FIP measures the good and bad things that happen while you go about pitching as well as you can. Minimizing walks to an absurd extreme will get you hit hard, and trading a few walks to fool a few additional hitters is worth it.In the NFL, throwing an interception is seen as just about the worst thing you can do, and no one throws fewer picks than Aaron Rodgers. However, there is such a thing as being too careful with the ball, and I suspect that Aaron is falling victim to the same kind of thinking as did Zack Greinke. It’s easy enough for a QB go an entire season without a pick by simply throwing the ball directly into the ground on every snap. Your offense won’t be very effective, but it will be “safe,” and Rodgers does a version of this on his many, many throwaways and third-down sacks. Avoiding interceptions should not be an end unto itself. The mark of a great quarterback is the ability to execute all types of plays and use the entire field while limiting mistakes; it is not to take out all possible risks to limit mistakes. When Rodgers was at his best he was still very careful with the ball, but he also made big plays look routine and threw a huge variety of passes. He didn’t throw interceptions because he was insanely accurate and had one of the NFL’s best arms, not because he was a bit of a chicken. Rodgers still rates fairly well in stats like ANY/A that reward a lack of picks Green Bay Packers Hoodie , but I suspect this is a bit like Greinke fooling FIP but not ERA.The narc on Rodgers this season is his completion percentage, which is one of the worst in football. Completion percentage isn’t everything, but in this case it is telling. Just as Greinke traded walks for harder hit balls, Rodgers is trading completions for fewer picks, and given the sacks he’s taken, that completion percentage probably understates things.Rodgers has, since 2015, given up a lot of what once made him great. When he holds the ball for a long time we often see it as Rodgers waiting for the big play, but I don’t think that’s right. I think it’s more about ensuring he doesn’t make the big mistake. Rodgers is now defined by that interception streak more than is healthy. He is supposed to be defined by brilliance that just happens to include care of the football as the icing on the cake.An overly careful Aaron is both ineffective and boring to watch, and if he doesn’t realize why interceptions are actually worth avoiding, the Packers dynasty is as good as over. MINNEAPOLIS — Once Kirk Cousins and the Minnesota Vikings took the lead on Green Bay, they played with a fierce refusal to let it go.They held onto the ball with the same determination.More Packers coveragePhotos of the Week: 7/21/19 – 7/27/19Packers rookie Gary’s biggest critic is himselfTop Tweets: Former Badger TJ Watt has impressive four-year transformationPHOTOS: 2019 Green Bay Packers training campPackers’ Rodgers, LaFleur ironing out offense, building chemistryCousins bounced back from his worst game of the season with 342 passing yards and three touchdowns without a fumble or an interception, and the Vikings overcame some early gaffes to outlast the depleted Packers for a 24-17 victory on Sunday night.Completing 29 of his 38 attempts, Cousins found Dalvin Cook , Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen for scores. Diggs and Thielen had eight receptions apiece.“It just kind of shows his character, shows what kind of player he is, to be able to just not really care what people talk about him Elgton Jenkins Jersey , not really care about what happened last week,” Thielen said of Cousins, adding: “The throws he was making, his full game was really impressive. That’s what you expect out of him.”Sheldon Richardson had two sacks to lead the defense’s game-long stifling of Aaron Rodgers, and the Vikings (6-4-1) pushed the Packers (4-6-1) further back in the NFC wild card race.The Vikings won a night game for the first time this season after losing to the top three teams in the NFC: to the Rams in Los Angeles, at home to the New Orleans Saints and at Chicago in a two-interception game by Cousins against the first-place Bears. The Vikings entered the weekend with the fourth-most turnovers in the NFL, and Cousins has been charged with 13 of the 16 giveaways. Coach Mike Zimmer was so impressed by the way Cousins played against the Packers that he gave him the game ball in the locker room afterward .“Last week left a bad taste in our mouths,” Cousins said, “and the chance to come back on Sunday night football against a division rival at home was a great opportunity, and I’m glad we made the most of it.”Rodgers threw a touchdown pass to Davante Adams and Aaron Jones scored on a short run for a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter, but the Packers fell to 0-6 on the road this season and 1-5-1 against the Vikings in their last seven meetings. Their final seven possessions produced only one field goal, with five punts and one turnover on downs.“We’ve all got to play better, myself included,” Rodgers said. “Started off the game nice. We had a couple good drives. We’re rolling there. We hit our unfortunate typical lull and didn’t get it going again.”With Randall Cobb out (hamstring) for a sixth game this season and rookies Equanimeous St. Brown (elbow) and Trevor Davis (hamstring) forced out in the second half, Rodgers didn’t have much to work with down the field. Left guard Lane Taylor (quadriceps) departed in the first half and left tackle David Bakhtiari (knee) was sidelined in the second half, leaving the protection shaky at best. Rodgers finished 17 for 28 for 198 yards, without a turnover.The Packers failed to move the chains on eight of 10 third downs. Jones was stuffed on fourth-and-inches by Harrison Smith, Danielle Hunter and Eric Kendricks midway through the third quarter, giving the Vikings the ball at the Green Bay 44. That set up a 37-yard field goal by Dan Bailey for Minnesota’s first lead of the game.“We’re definitely not in the position http://www.thepackersfanshop.com/Darnell-Savage-Jr.-Jersey , record-wise, we thought we would be in coming into the year or even after this game. We thought we could get the victory. But unfortunately we ran out of gas,” Packers linebacker Clay Matthews said. “We’re beat up, no doubt about that. But give them credit: They put in a full four quarters.”SLOW STARTThe Vikings outgained the Packers 280-139 in total yardage in the first half, but they had to settle for a tie at the break. About to go for it on fourth-and-inches on the opening drive following a timeout to strategize, they were penalized for 12 men on the field and had to punt.Diggs collided with Thielen when Jaire Alexander crashed their pick play on the second possession, and after Diggs tried to circle back the other way with an ill-fated salvage attempt he lost 10 yards on that reception to lead to another punt.Bailey’s wide left 48-yard try wasted another highlight-reel catch by Thielen in between Alexander and Josh Jones that went for 33 yards. Later in the second quarter, after some mismanagement of the clock, the Vikings had to hustle to set up a 51-yard kick for Bailey. That one was good, but Rashod Hill was called for a false start. The 56-yarder sliced right, the fifth straight missed field goal against the Packers after rookie Daniel Carlson went 0 for 3 in Green Bay and was cut the next day.PACKED AND HAPPY HOUSEThe announced attendance of 66,872 was the largest for the Vikings in three years at U.S. Bank Stadium. A handful of Minnesota players were introduced in the first quarter with Paul Bunyan’s Axe, the trophy the Gophers repossessed from the rival Badgers in Wisconsin on Saturday to end a 14-game losing streak. Randy Moss kept the crowd fired up in a halftime ceremony to receive his Pro Football Hall of Fame ring.INJURY REPORTPackers: In addition to the carnage on offense, SS Kentrell Brice aggravated an ankle injury in the first quarter and was knocked out of action in the third quarter with a possible concussion. CB Kevin King and CB Bashaud Breeland were already inactive with injuries.Vikings: RT Brian O’Neill left in the third quarter for evaluation for a possible concussion. … CB Xavier Rhodes limped off with an apparent injury to his right hamstring in the fourth quarter.UP NEXTPackers: Host Arizona (2-9) next Sunday afternoon.Vikings: Play at New England (8-3) next Sunday afternoon.