In an attempt to make sure Matt LaFleur did not lose two consecutive games for the first time in his head-coaching career, the Green Bay Packers decided to play one of their most sound games, top to bottom, as they beat the Los Angeles Rams, 38-26.
Needing to record a win to help end a 1-2 slide over their past 3 games, the Packers were stout on offense and defense, even though there were special teams mishaps yet again that took away from their performance. Green Bay helped keep the Rams on their recent slide, as they harassed Matthew Stafford and mostly kept their receiving core in check, albeit for a few chunk plays.
Green Bay’s offense was led by Rodgers (28/45, 307 yards, 3 total TDs), AJ Dillon (25 touches, 90 yards, 1 receiving TD), and Davante Adams (8 receptions, 104 yards), who helped stymie a Rams unit that has a lot of big names on it but certainly has not produced like in previous seasons.
Even with his broken toe, Rodgers held command of the pocket for the majority of the day (and ran for a short score), as he was only sacked once by the strong pass rush by the Rams. Replacing the injured Elgton Jenkins was Yosh Njiman, who more than held his own against Von Miller and Aaron Donald at left tackle, showcasing that this offensive line unit will never get enough credit.
On defense, the pass rush took Stafford down twice, as Kenny Clark and Rashan Gary each recorded a sack. But the star of the game was the defensive backfield for the Packers, as the tandem of Eric Stokes and Rasul Douglas combined for nine tackles, six passes defended, and one interception, which Douglas returned for a touchdown.
The Packers got out to an early lead, as the lone score of the first quarter came via Rodgers’ one-yard scamper on a mesh read-option play, as he outran Jalen Ramsey into the end zone. Mason Crosby’s first of three field goals (on four attempts) kicked off the second-quarter scoring, which was quickly followed up by a 79-yard TD from Stafford to Van Jefferson.
The two teams traded field goals next, which made it 13-10 GB. Randall Cobb hauled in a nifty seven-yard throw from Rodgers, and Stafford found Darrell Henderson for a short score that made the game 20-17 Green Bay going into halftime.
Green Bay scored all of the 17 points of the third quarter, as Dillon went in from five yards out through the air, Crosby hit another short field goal, and Douglas housed his interception of Stafford to put the game out of reach, 36-17.
The Rams’ last scoring efforts came via a Stafford deep ball to Odell Beckham Jr. from 54 yards out and a field goal, which put the game at a one-score affair. But the Packers shut it down from there, as Adrian Amos recovered an onside kick and that was all she wrote.
The Packers will be going into their bye week with a 9-3 record and their head held high after a much-needed win over a tough opponent. Needing to rest up and get some big-time reinforcements back after the bye week is what this team is looking forward to, so the likes of Jaire Alexander, David Bakhtiari, and Za’Darius Smith could very well return to the field when this teams needs them the most.뿓뿓뿓
Mike Johrendt has been an avid fan of the Packers ever since he can remember. He is now a writer at PackersTalk and you can follow him on Twitter at @MJohrendt23