The Packers Defense is Back

The Packers absolutely manhandled the Bears in week 1, and the defense had a lot to do with it. Don’t get me wrong, the offense did put up 31 points on the Bears’ “solid” defense, but I think it was extremely noticeable how Justin Fields and their offense couldn’t get going.

Fields was tormented the entire day, and realistically the Bears only ended with 14 points scored on us. There were several reasons why the Packers defense was so dominant, but we have to give credit to how terrible the Bears offensive line is. Outside of that though, our defense showed out at the highest level for opening week.


The Pass Rush

In recent years, the Green Bay Packers have invested heavily in their defensive line. Additions of Devonte Wyatt, Colby Wooden, Lukas Van Ness, Karl Brooks, TJ Slaton, and Kingsley Enagbare all have shown flashes of huge upside for the Packers. Some of them are rookies or barely played last year, but when they do hit the field they make the most of the opportunity and absolutely crush it.

Keeping around Kenny Clark, Rashan Gary, and Preston Smith provides veteran leadership and elite play for youngsters to look up to. Everybody did their job to an excellent level, especially Gary who played limited snaps. He only had 10 pass rush snaps and totaled 5 (yes five!) pressures in those snaps. To put that into perspective, the Packers had a total of 36 pressures, which was half of Justin Field’s dropbacks.

Another guy who really stood out was Devonte Wyatt, who led the team in 6 pressures. I loved the guy coming out of college and I’m so glad to see him finally start to break out after having a solid few games as a rookie last year. It was such a monster performance from the defensive line, posting 4 sacks, a forced fumble, 4 tackles for loss, and 2 passes defended.

Overall, I’m extremely impressed with the production from this group and I’m extremely intrigued to see how the younger guys develop this year and in the future.


The Secondary

The safety situation brought me some concerns for the Packers heading into the game, but safe to say, we’ll be just fine.

I would like to apologize to Darnell Savage for believing he fell off after last year, because WOW! The guy flew from spot to spot and led the team in tackles. He also only allowed 2 catches for 28, had 3 plays for a loss, and didn’t miss a tackle the entire game. This is the same player as last year who got benched because he couldn’t tackle a chair. He was the third-highest-graded safety in week 1, and it feels great to see him play as his 2019-2020 self again.

Back to the safety group as a whole, everyone did their job at a high enough level to not be cooked the entire time. Part of it though was how Fields was running for his life nearly every play, but still, they locked it down long enough for not a whole lot of good to come out of the Bears offense.

The corners had a day themselves too, with Jaire and Rasul doing the usual and locked down their top 2 guys. Darnell Mooney did get lost at one point allowing a huge play, but the defense hunkered down after that and sealed the deal. Mooney and Moore combined for 6 receptions for 78 yards and 1 touchdown off of 9 targets. Jaire and Rasul both had a pass defended and made 11 tackles combined.

Another guy who stood out in the tackling department was Keisean Nixon with 8 total tackles. I was genuinely surprised by how well he played, although he wasn’t great in coverage, but as long as he can tackle he’ll be a solid player for us on defense.

Carrington Valentine didn’t get to play much so he didn’t really do anything, but he did lock down DJ Moore in the endzone which is a plus.


Quay Walker

Quay Walker has that DAWG in him.

Walker is by far in a way one of the most versatile players the Packers have on the roster right now. He was the third-highest-graded linebacker in week 1, posting a ridiculous 92.7 on PFF. Walker recorded an interception, a touchdown, a tackle for loss, 4 total tackles, and probably a concussion after playing against the Bears. He was all over the field and did a great job reading Justin Fields the entire game.

The main thing that stood out to me was the way he held himself the entire game. I was worried coming into this year that his shenanigans on the field would be a recurring problem, but not once during the game did it ever seem like he would pull that crap again. I heard reports that he had matured a lot over the offseason and didn’t really believe it. I’m so glad that he proved me and a whole lot of other people wrong about his personality.

I gotta give De’Vondre Campbell some love too as he was a tackling machine all game with 7 total tackles. 


Final Thoughts

I think a slept-on aspect of the team this year is the mentality. These guys are hungrier than ever because everyone is sleeping on them. On offense and defense, dudes were hyped after every single play. Especially on defense, with Jaire leading the group with energy.

The special teams unit also had tons of energy and electric plays. Jayden Reed’s long punt return and several big hits when covering the ball made the momentum stay with us. I’m so impressed with how this team is carrying themselves, and this is probably the most energy a Packers team has had in a long time. It truly is a new era in Green Bay and I’m all here for it.

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x