One week after suffering a sloppy yet hard-fought loss to San Francisco, the Packers delivered the exact type of performance necessary to keep pace in a tough NFC North division. Aaron Rodgers tied a franchise record for passing yardage and could have easily added more. While this win may have more about Washington’s shoddy play than dominance from Green Bay’s end, the Packers carry momentum into a difficult Week 3 meeting in Cincinnati.
Defensive Front Seven
Dom Capers dialed up pressure at precisely the right time against the Washington offense, forcing rushed throws and one interception from Robert Griffin. Inside linebacker Brad Jones was especially instrumental in the defense’s success, helping shut down the run in the first half. Down linemen like Johnny Jolly have done an excellent job swatting passes down at the line of scrimmage.
Playmaking from Offensive Skill Positions
James Jones erupted with career numbers in the first half alone while James Starks stepped in nicely for Eddie Lacy, who suffered a concussion on the first series of the game. Randall Cobb and Jermichael Finley shined for a second week in a row, both picking up considerable yardage after the catch. The amount of talented depth on offense is becoming increasingly evident as nearly any back or receiver is capable of putting up big numbers on a given week.
In an otherwise impressive performance by the defense, the Packers routinely missed tackles on Redskin ball carriers. Sam Shields stood out as particularly guilty of this poor tackling, despite having a solid day in coverage. With a suspect pass rush to begin with, the Packers cannot afford to give up substantial yardage after the catch through missed tackles.
Though the unit gave enough to produce an electric first half on offense, Aaron Rodgers was dropped four times for 39 yards. The young and inexperienced offensive front is clearly still in the process of developing chemistry but needs to begin to gel if the offense is to maintain any sort of consistency. As of now, the offensive line is ill prepared to face the difficult defensive lines of Cincinnati and Detroit in the coming weeks.