Green Bay Packers Week 16 Top Performers

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DEFENSE

A.J. Hawk (50) returns an interception in the 3rd quarter during the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports photograph

A.J. Hawk – Hawk had one of his best overall games of the season. Among six tackles and one pass defensed, the eighth-year linebacker was involved in two key turnover plays in the game.

First, with the Packers down 17-14 and Pittsburgh backed up on their own two-yard line, Hawk burst into the backfield and wrapped up the ball carrier as Jamari Lattimore came over and popped the ball out. With a Tramon Williams recovery, the Packers offense converted the turnover into seven points.

With the Packers offense coming off a pick-six and three-and-out, Green Bay was nearing the end of the third quarter down two scores.

The game appeared to be slipping from the Packers. On a first-and-ten and the momentum well in Pittsburg’s favor, Hawk made an athletic move to tip a Ben Roethlisberger pass over the middle of the field and brought it in for the interception, giving the ball back to Green Bay’s offense on Pittsburgh’s 23.

It was the second impact play in the game made by Hawk and the Packers defense.

Micah Hyde (33) returns a kickoff for 70 yards before being tackled in the 4th quarter. Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports photograph

Micah Hyde – Hyde had a solid day on defense, recording six tackles, making plays against the run, and deflecting a handful of passes as the nickel defensive back. But Hyde had an even better day as a kick returner.

He nearly got the Packers back in the game with a 70-yard kick return with a little over a minute left to play in the game. Hyde also had returns of 40 and 35 yards and was a real factor in putting the Packers offense in advantageous field position. Hyde can be a difference maker on special teams or defense. Sunday showed his versatility.

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