The Green Bay Packers have a defense. (I know because Aaron Rodgers said so.) Every week thus far, the defense has had to bail the team out. (When was the last time anyone said that about the Packers?) Sunday’s game versus the Denver Broncos, was no exception.
Green Bay didn’t get out to as hot of a start as they did in Week 2 against the Vikings, but they did stake this defense to another lead early. Once again the Packers were able to matriculate the ball down the field with ease. Then, same as last week, the offense stalled. This is concerning, but would be alarming without a defense that is on the cusp of being elite. (I said on the cusp. It’s only Week 3, folks.)
When the Packers offense didn’t move, the defense made sure the Broncos offense didn’t move. (For the most part. Green Bay’s defense got gashed on the ground for the second straight week, to the tune of 149 yards.) Six sacks of Denver quarterback, Joe Flacco, showed that.
The Packers’ defense gave the offense extra possessions to try and rectify their struggles. An interception, two forced fumbles, and two fumble recoveries, gave Green Bay’s offense workable fields to put points on the board. They took advantage.
When the dust settled, it was a 27-16 victory for the
green blue and gold. (My Quick TO:SS prediction was 27-17, Packers. If not for a Brandon McManus missed extra point, I would have been spot on. Just saying. *shrugs*) This wasn’t 27 points and a victory willed by Rodgers, because he was pedestrian. (Yeah I said it.) This was another inconsistent offensive performance and bailout by the defense.
For well over a decade, its been Rodgers who’s had to put on the cape and save the game. It’s been Rodgers who’s grabbed the headlines. Not this season. As the offense works to find traction, it’s the defense who is in the spotlight. The defense is the headline, and that’s a good thing.
Eventually, the offense will start to cook. If the defense continues its march towards elite, you’re looking at a dangerous, headline grabbing squad. Until then, a 3-0 start will have to suffice.