How the Green Bay Packers shut down San Francisco

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October 4, 2015; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) runs with the football against San Francisco 49ers outside linebacker

Aaron Lynch

(59) during the third quarter at Levi

Rodgers On The Move

Every week, Aaron Rodgers seems to find a new way to impress us…well, either a new way or yet another impressive interpretation of something we’ve seen before in a somewhat less awe-inspiring form.

Last week against Kansas City, he was routinely slinging the ball out in under half a second all night long. The week before against Seattle, he displayed his insanely-excellent footwork in moving around the pocket and freeing himself from pressure.

This week we saw more of that Seattle-style display, but it manifested in its own unique way.

The offensive line didn’t have its best day; both of the usually-stellar guards each had penalties called on them, and the Bakhtiari-Barclay tackle combination was allowing tons of pressure off the edge. It was especially bad in terms of Barclay, who was routinely abused by Aaron Lynch.

Due to the near-constant pressure being allotted to the defensive front, Rodgers had to move around in and out of the pocket often to try making something happen.

His movements allowed him to toss his only TD on the day, where he expertly stepped away from multiple pressures and out of harm’s way on a handful of occasions to find an opening behind the defense to pass into. They also surfaced in his ability to take off on any given play if they protection broke down and the coverage held up.

Rodgers attempted three scrambles on the day. The first extended an early drive. The second wasn’t quite as productive, but he was decently close to maneuvering past two defenders for another first down. The third took a long third-&-goal and nearly saw him take it all the way for a score on a clearly unsuspecting defense (had his foot not touched out on his last step, it would have been).

His end stats — as well as that of the offense — weren’t overly suited for what we tend to expect out of Green Bay, but his performance goes far beyond simple yardage totals. His subtle plays and little adjustments set him apart from the others at his position as much as any other area.

With the Rams and their well-known disruptive front coming into Lambeau next week, we may well see even more of his footwork on display real soon.

Next: A Little R&R