The Green Bay Packers improved to 9-3 after a convincing 36-28 victory over the visiting Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, and in all honesty, the game wasn’t as close as the score indicates.
Despite an unfathomable amount of key injuries, the Packers just continue to find a way to win. If we’re being honest, the Packers might just be the best team in the NFC, and maybe the NFL.
It was a classic Matt LaFleur game script: running the ball 32 times, taking better care of the football than his opponent, and controlling the time of possession 39:40 to 20:20.
So, without further ado, after a re-watch of the game, here are my five takeaways from the Week 12 win over the LA Rams.
Adam Stenavich deserves a raise
No offensive line has had to overcome more adversity than the Green Bay Packers. No David Bakhtiari, no Elgton Jenkins, no Josh Myers – no problem.
The Packers ran out an offensive line consisting of Yosh Nijman, Jon Runyan, Lucas Patrick, Royce Newman, and Billy Turner.
That group held up terrific in pass protection on Sunday, against a Rams front consisting of Aaron Donald, Von Miller, and Leonard Floyd. In fact, they allowed just one sack on 45 pass attempts, and if you want to get technical it came on a play that Aaron Rodgers stepped up in the pocket and was tripped up from behind. It was truly impressive how this group played considering how little time they’ve had together.
I’m not sure what Adam Stenavich does, but he seems to have every lineman that’s forced into duty ready to play at a moment’s notice. He was a Matt LaFleur hire some were worried about due to lack of experience, but I think it’s fair to say nobody is worried in the slightest anymore.
It won’t be long before Stenavich is off to greener pastures because his work isn’t going unnoticed.
Randall Cobb still has something left in the tank
Prior to exiting the game due to injury, Randall Cobb was putting on a clinic in the first half. Cobb registered four catches for 95 yards and a touchdown, and appeared to still have a little juice.
When GM Brian Gutekunst traded for Randall Cobb just before the season, it was a move done to appease 12 – that was no secret. Thankfully, his production has proven to have been a worthwhile investment for the Packers. He still offers sure hands and offers a unique skill-set out of the slot. Hopefully he won’t be forced to miss time, because this receiving corps needs the veteran.
Equanimeous St. Brown made a big impact
I would be remiss if I didn’t at least mention the impact EQ made on Sunday. The box score will read that he recorded just one catch for seven yards that went for a first down. But, that’s not where his greatest impact was felt.
EQ downed a Corey Bojorquez punt on the one-yard line, and he also registered a nice tackle on a punt return that would have surely given up a chunk of yards had the returner gotten past him. His impact on special teams was impressive, and he’s taking advantage of every chance he gets on the field.
It’s also worth noting that Equanimeous St. Brown is one of the Packers’ best blocking receivers, and with the way that Allen Lazard has been struggling as of late, it could offer added opportunity for EQ.
Rasul Douglas played like a starting cornerback
The Packers’ secondary was without Jaire Alexander and Kevin King on Sunday, which would be a tall order most weeks. Against the Rams, Rasul Douglas turned in one of his best performances of the season – registering six tackles, four pass breakups, one interception, and one touchdown.
It’s truly hard to wrap my head around how he was sitting on another team’s practice squad prior to signing with the Packers. Even when King returns, Douglas has shown more than enough to retain the starting gig. Brian Gutekunst may even have to give re-signing Douglas in the off-season some consideration.
Rashan Gary isn’t going anywhere
The former first-round pick continues to impress week in and week out. On Sunday, Gary had four pressures and a sack despite playing hurt. Gary now has seven sacks on the season, five of which have been recorded in his last four games.
All of the added pressure from Gary is finally turning into sacks. The way he’s played of late is nothing short of stardom, and at just 23 years of age – the best is yet to come.