PACKERS FOOTBALL IS BACK! Not just training camp back or preseason back but like, really back! The Packers started their regular season Thursday night at Soldier Field and beat the Chicago Bears, 10-3. If you were not a Packer or Bear fan, that game would’ve been brutal to watch, but I enjoyed every second of the defensive masterpiece.
Before we get into who I thought was the offensive and defensive players of the week, we need to talk about Green Bay’s punter. Yes, the punter, JK Scott. He’s not defense, he’s not offense, but he was Green Bay’s MVP Thursday night. Scott punted the ball NINE times and had 5 inside the 20 with zero touchbacks. Having 5 inside the 20 is actually more than last year’s First-Team All-Pro punter, Michael Dickson, had in a game last season. Scott’s best punt of the night came on his last punt when he kicked it 63 yards and made Chicago start their final drive on their own 14 yard line. A lot of people don’t care about punters but Thursday proved just how important it is to have an elite punter like JK Scott on your team.
There’s nothing like watching a dominant offense…it didn’t happen in this game though.
The offense only put up 10 points the entire night so it was tough to find somebody who really stood out and changed the game due to their play. Marquez Valdes-Scantling had a good game and Aaron Rodgers made plays when he had too, but my Offensive Player of the Week goes to the guy who had the only offensive touchdown of the game…Jimmy Graham.
Jimmy Graham finished the game with 3 catches for 30 yards and a touchdown which don’t look dominating but he made some of the biggest plays of the night. His first catch of the night and the season, came early in the second quarter on an 8-yard touchdown pass from Aaron Rodgers. On the pass, Rodgers had a lot of time in the pocket while Graham ran an out route to the back of the end zone and the play looked like it would be dead. However, Rodgers rifled the ball to Graham who was essentially standing still, and Jimmy made a nice, strong, two-handed catch on a 50-50 ball against Bears’ defensive back, Deon Bush. This one touchdown means he is already halfway to tying his season total from last year. His second catch showed that he can still be explosive when he caught the ball, ran with it, and hurdled All-Pro safety, Eddie Jackson, for a gain of 16 yards right before the end of the first half. His last catch was an easy play for a gain of 6 yards. In a game with limited offensive standouts, the guy with the only touchdown of the game seemed to be the logical choice for my Offensive Player of the Week. Runner-Up: Aaron Rodgers
Let’s Talk Defense…
The defensive side of the ball is where things get tricky. The entire Packers defense played incredible and only gave up 3 points and 254 yards to the Bears. They also sacked Chicago quarterback, Mitch Trubisky, 5 times for a loss of 20 yards. There were so many players I could have given my award out to this week like Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, Blake Martinez, Jaire Alexander, Kenny Clark, should I keep going? Even with all of these players stepping up big, there was one player whose name was being talked about the most when the game ended and that was safety, Adrian Amos.
As many fans know, the Bears had given up on Amos this offseason leading him right into the Packers’ arms so you know he wanted to prove something going into this game, and he did. Amos finished the game against his former team with 5 tackles, including one on a crucial 3rd and 1 forcing a punt and one game changing interception. His interception could not came at a better time. There was 1:58 left in the game and Chicago was marching down the field and they looked as if they were going to tie the game. Trubisky went for the end zone but Amos snuffed it out and made the catch over his left shoulder while covering Allen Robinson II. In an on-field interview immediately after the game, Amos talked about the interception saying, “It feels good…I’m a little emotional, it’s a big win for us.” Well Mr. Amos, your interception felt good for fans too because that was the moment everyone knew the game was over. Runner-Up: Preston Smith
The Packers are 1-0, you gotta love it. Next week they take on the Vikings at home in what should be a higher scoring game. The Bears’ defense is out of this world good so I’m still excited to see the full extent of what Matt LaFleur’s offense can be. See you next week.
Offensive POTW Tracker:
First Place: Jimmy Graham (1)
Runner-Up: Aaron Rodgers (1)
Defensive POTW Tracker:
First Place: Adrian Amos (1)
Runner-Up: Preston Smith (1)