It was ugly but the Green Bay Packers will take it.
The Packers offense was not firing on all cylinders Sunday without their top two receivers in Greg Jennings and Jordy Nelson, but thankfully the defense was up to the task against a relatively impotent offense as the Packers hung on in an ugly 24-15 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Aaron Rodgers was good but not stellar as he missed his two favorite targets and Alex Green had a fair if not unimpressive performance against the Jaguars. The defense, despite a third quarter touchdown, played solid in the red zone and kept the Jaguars out of the end zone for the rest of the game.
It would be unfair to say the Packers offense suddenly regressed thanks to injuries at wide receiver, but the running game needs to get going. The defense also has been hobbled by injuries, but some bad habits seem to be resurfacing despite the unit’s overall solid play in the win.
Here’s who stood out and who didn’t in the win over the Jaguars.
S Morgan Burnett
People were watching to see how the secondary would do with the loss of Charles Woodson and Burnett came up big. He had an interception, a sack, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and led the team with nine tackles.
When he wasn’t forcing turnovers, Burnett was constantly around the ball. He showed solid tackling technique and took care of business in the defensive backfield. It’s not enough to help people forget about a special talent like Woodson, but it’s a reminder of how much young talent the Packers have in their secondary that will continue to improve with experience.
LB Brad Jones
Not to be outdone by Burnett, Jones played well in place of both the injured DJ Smith and Desmond Bishop. Jones was touted at one time as the heir apparent to Aaron Kampman but thanks to the Packers’ commitment to the 3-4 scheme and the emergence of Clay Matthews, Jones became a forgotten man on the linebacker depth chart.
Thanks to Bishop and Smith landing on season ending injured reserved, Jones finally gets another chance and made the most of his chances against the Jaguars. Jones also had one sack and a forced fumble plus he finished behind Burnett with seven tackles.