The Green Bay Packers Week 15 matchup against the Lamar Jackson-less Baltimore Ravens was a thriller down to the very end. Ultimately, the Packers were able to pull off the win and clinch themselves a playoff berth and the NFC North title. Now able to focus on the playoffs and achieving their ultimate goal of hoisting the Lombardi Trophy, the Pack lock in on securing the best possible seeding for the postseason.
While the Packers escaped with a win in Week 15, it’s somewhat concerning the performance they allowed Ravens backup Tyler Huntley to display. Huntley had two passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns in the game, nearly leading Baltimore to a comeback win. Still, the Packers defense stepped up at the end of the game to deny the Ravens a walk-off 2-point conversion. There are improvements to be made heading into Week 16’s matchup with the Cleveland Browns, so with that in mind, here are three Green Bay Packers’ Week 15 takeaways from their 31-30 win over the Baltimore Ravens.
*Watch the NFL LIVE with fuboTV (click for free trial)*
Green Bay Packers Week 15 Takeaways
3. The defense and special teams need to be consistent
The Packers defense didn’t have a truly terrible game on Sunday, despite surrendering 30 points to the Tyler Huntley-led Ravens. When it mattered most, the Packers defenders came up with big stops, most notably to cut out the Ravens’ attempted game-winning 2-point conversion. Still, allowing a backup quarterback to put up monster numbers like that is worrisome, and also creates some concern as to how Green Bay can lineup against tight ends. Mark Andrews was a one-man wrecking ball in Week 15, racking up 10 receptions, 136 yards, and two touchdowns on 13 targets. If the Packers can’t figure out a way to slow down game-changing tight ends, come the playoffs, teams may utilize that as a means of exploiting their defense.
Special teams, on the other hand, has been an issue for the Packers all year. Whether it’s Mason Crosby’s inability to consistently knock down the kicks we’ve seen him make throughout his career, or complete mental mistakes while defending punts, the Packers are getting burned by their special teams unit far too frequently. We saw some gaffes from the unit once again on Sunday, and that will need to be cleaned up going forward.
2. Doubling Davante Adams just opens up the other options
It’s no secret that Davante Adams is arguably the most dangerous receiving weapon in football. The Ravens were well aware of that heading into the Week 15 matchup, and with an already-weakened secondary, they opted to double team Adams in order to limit his impact. It was a rather effective strategy, holding Adams to six receptions for 44 yards and a touchdown. But even when
Unfortunately, Aaron Rodgers has a decent rapport with other receivers on the team, too, completing passes to a total of eight different players. Marquez Valdes-Scantling caught five passes for 98 yards and a touchdown in the game, while Mercedes Lewis and Josiah Deguara each caught three passes. While Adams is clearly the go-to guy in Rodgers’ approach, if the defense doubles up the star wideout, Rodgers won’t hesitate to fling it elsewhere, and usually does so with considerable success.
1. Aaron Rodgers deserves to be the favorite for NFL MVP
Aaron Rodgers’ heroics on a football field are becoming second nature to fans of the sport. It’s an expectation, at this point, that the quarterback will excel each and every time he steps out onto the field. Despite battling a toe injury, one which has generated far too much press, Rodgers was on the top of his game once again in Week 15. Even with Davante Adams facing double coverage at virtually all times, Rodgers still managed to find his favorite target six times, including once for a touchdown. He then managed to get eight other weapons involved, seven of whom caught passes from the reigning MVP. No matter what the Ravens’ defense threw at Rodgers, he threw it back harder, and more accurately, resulting in a pristine outing that saw him complete 23-of-31 pass attempts for 268 yards and three touchdowns.
On the year, Rodgers is up to 30 touchdown passes and just four interceptions, having guided the Packers to an early NFC North title and a potental No. 1 seed in the NFC playoff bracket. If that doesn’t scream MVP season, what does?