The Green Bay Packers were tied for first place in the NFC North when they headed to London last month as 8 1/2-point favourites to the New York Giants. That started a seven-game stretch in which the Packers have gone 1-6, putting their playoff hopes in peril. The Packers (4-7) didn’t get a week off after the London trip at their own request because they wanted the rest later in the season. Packers coach Matt LaFleur wonders now whether that was the right call.

LaFleur has learned plenty of tough lessons this year in contrast to his first three regular seasons as Green Bay’s coach, all of which finished with 13 wins and the NFC North title.
Barring a historic collapse by Minnesota (8-1), the division is out of reach this year. A wild-card playoff berth is still possible. The Packers believe they can turn their season around, but they acknowledge they’re running out of time to do so.

Every team has the same goal coming into the season,” LaFleur said. “I think for some, it’s more realistic than others, and I think we were one of those teams that definitely believed. And I’m not saying that it can’t happen, but we’re going to have to play a hell of a lot better and we’re going to have to coach a hell of a lot better and just truly take it that one game at a time.”But I think you’re always fighting for something. Every one of these guys, myself, all the coaches, you’re always fighting for your job. Always. Every time you go out there. And that’s just the reality of the league we live in and we work in. So that’s always going to be the mindset. Whether you’re in the race or not, to me, you’re always fighting for your job.”