The Packers went into Washington and got beat up by a good team, losing by two touchdowns. Aaron Rodgers still playing on one knee made enough play to give the team a chance to win, but the Packers could not take advantage of the opportunities they created. For a two touchdown loss to a team that missed the playoffs last year (I think they’ll make it this season), there were some positives shown by the Packer’s young core.
Jamaal Williams: The Packers starting running back isn’t getting the complimentary headlines this week, in fact most of the headlines are asking McCarthy to start, and give most of the work load to Aaron Jones. Even Aaron Rodgers asked to see Jones more stating, “When you bring 33 back on the field like we did last week, you kind of forget the type of dynamic abilities he can bring to a game with his running style. He’s a different type of runner than we’ve had here in a while. You’ve gotta find ways to get him the ball.”
Make no mistake, Williams had a really solid game against Washington, picking up 29 yards on five carries, and two catches for 16 yards. The second year player didn’t get a ton of opportunities, but he made use of nearly every touch he received. He may not have the explosiveness of Jones, but Williams is as reliable as they get.
Geronimo Allison: This game had the potential to turn into a blow out in the first half. The Packers were down 21-3, after failing to slow down the Redskins’ offense, and looking just a little too off on offense. In a moment the team needed someone to help Rodgers out, Geronimo beat his man early in his route, leaving him wide open in the middle of the field. Rodgers hit him, as you would expect him to, leaving Allison to run it in essentially uncontested. That’s what this offense has been missing for years, if someone beats their man, Rodgers is almost certainly going to make the play. It’s been good to see Allison and Cobb create space for Rodgers to fit one in so far this season, especially as Aaron’s mobility is so limited.
Allison hasn’t had a break out game this season, but he sure has been steady. He’s averaged about 70 yards receiving this season with two touchdowns. That’s exactly what the team needed from him, and possibly why the front office decided to move on from Jordy Nelson. I don’t think the organization or QB1 is surprised by Allison’s start to the season.
Kenny Clark: The third year player out of UCLA is looking like the Packers most successful first round pick in too many years. He led the defense in total tackles last week, something that was almost exclusively owned by Blake Martinez last season. Sadly, he may be the defensive hero due to the overall domination by old foe, Adrian Peterson. I think it felt like old times for everyone involved, us fans, the organization, and AP. Still, we desperately needed someone to slow him down, and Clark was the man who stepped up. The defense steadied in the second half, giving the Packers a chance to get back into the game. They would not have been able to do it, if he wasn’t playing out of his mind. With Wilkerson out for season, we lost a ton of depth, but the pairing of Clark and Daniels should be disruptive. Kenny has two pass deflections in three games, he’s showing to be an all around play maker.
Kentrell Brice: Brice is getting a lot of slack from Packer’s nation. The media is questioning the safety position, and the fanbase is pointing their finger towards Brice, hoping Josh Jones is a hero when he eventually returns. Brice gave up an easy deep ball to Alex Smith for a touchdown early in the game. He’s struggled to start the season reading the route, and tracking the ball. In the current world of overreacting about everything and everything, let’s not forget how well Brice played against the Bears. He’s been inconsistent this season, but don’t start the ‘Sit Kentrell’ campaign just yet. McCarthy believes in him, and he’s not going anywhere anytime soon. Josh Jones is his backup, it’s as simply as that.
Jaire Alexander: This rookie is something else, man. Not only is he reliable in pass coverage, he has the intangibles and skill set to start dreaming of four seasons from now. We use this comparison far too often, as there will never be another, but he has a little Charles Woodson to his game. He can make a play at any level, including special teams. He’s another football player who has the ball skills that reminds me of a basketball player. His movements, his awareness of the ball, everything. I wanted the team to select Josh Jackson in the first round, and was unsure of Alexander, even though he was Louisville’s best defender. Well, I got everything I wanted and more. Jaire had seven tackles in week three, and it wasn’t due to him just getting beat by the receiver.
The Week Three Youngin of the Week: Aaron Jones
The second year, sweetheart of a human being, made his season debut after being suspended two games for having some pot in his pocket. I don’t want to get off topic, but this dude seemed genuinely excited to be named “Youngin’ of the Week” after his first start last season. That’s how nice of a man he is. I’m beyond sick of the NFL for a number of reasons (I can’t wait for the game tomorrow), but Jones missing two games over a tax plant is one of their more lovely decisions.
The NFL made us wait for it, but every Packer fan saw exactly what we were hoping to see from him this season. When Rodgers handed him the ball, chunks of yards were gained. He only received six carries, as the offense did a nice job giving each back some work, yet he still finished with 42 yards. Finishing the game with 42 yards doesn’t do him any justice for how well he played. His elusiveness is off the charts, and went along with the quickness, and vision to give the offense the biggest boost in the run game they’ve had since rookie year Eddy Lacy.
I think we have three special backs, and a quarterback that deserves to pass on second and third down. Aaron Jones will probably struggle to get the ball as much as he deserves, but it’s going to be increasingly more difficult to not give him the ball more as we dive deeper into the season. The good news, I don’t think he’ll develop anything near a diva mentality about sharing the workload, he’s the perfect weapon for this offense.