GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Forget all this talk about Mike Daniels as a budding superstar on the Green Bay Packers' defense.

He’s there already.

He was there even before Sunday’s regular-season opener against the Seattle Seahawks, a game he single-handedly turned in the Packers’ favor early in the third quarter. But Sunday’s performance should convince anyone who wasn’t quite sure. It is certainly worth NFL iron on transfers.

In what was a surprisingly impressive showing by the Packers' defense -- which was last seen getting run out of the Georgia Dome in the NFC Championship Game -- it was Daniels who dominated in the 17-9 opening-day victory at Lambeau Field.

"Mike was dominant from what I saw," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. "The film will tell the whole story, but it seemed to me he was in the backfield all day."

In a span of three plays on the Seahawks' opening drive of the third quarter, Daniels had a shared sack with Nick Perry and then a solo sack and forced fumble on quarterback Russell Wilson that linebacker Kyler Fackrell recovered at Seattle's 6-yard line.

To that point, the difference in the game was McCarthy's timeout usage. McCarthy called his last two of the first half -- one with 48 seconds left in the half after a first-down run and another with 43 seconds left after a second-down run -- and then Seattle hit two big plays that led to a last-second field goal for the only points of the first half. What McCarthy should have considered was that without a third timeout (they previously burned one on defense after the first play of the game from scrimmage), he wouldn’t have been able to get the ball back before halftime anyway.


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