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4 Packers players most responsible for Week 2 win vs. Bears

NFL, Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears, Aaron Rodgers, Aaron Jones, Sammy Watkins, Preston Smith

The Green Bay Packers defeated the Chicago Bears 27-10 on Sunday night at Lambeau Field, bringing their record to 1-1.

It wasn’t a flawless game, but the Packers’ prime-time game against the Bears was a significant improvement from Week 1. Head coach Matt LaFleur effectively released his powerful backfield tandem, with Aaron Jones, in particular, stepping out as the centerpiece of the green and yellow onslaught. Despite a couple of fumbles, the Packers exited Week 2 with a victory in hand, sweeping against Justin Fields and the Bears to return to .500 in the NFC North.

Here are the four Packers players most responsible for their Week 2 win over the Bears.

4. Preston Smith

Preston Smith was an absolute beast in this game. For the Packers, he had seven tackles and two sacks.

Green Bay’s defense never let Fields settle in as a passer, challenging the Bears to unleash their young quarterback loose. Smith, who came off the edge and rushed like crazy, was the face of that aggressive defense.

LaFleur was pleased with the defense’s performance in this game.

“All in all, our defense regrouped,” he said post-game. “Every time I looked out there, we were playing pretty physical. To give up 10 points in this league, that’s pretty special.”

3. Sammy Watkins

In this game, wide receiver Sammy Watkins made an appearance. He made some key plays, including a fourth-quarter long shot that effectively sealed the win.

Watkins grabbed three of four receptions for 93 yards in the Packers’ first win of the season.

His four targets were enough to give him sole control of the team lead, making him the most productive receiver in a run-first Green Bay game versus Chicago. The veteran wideout gained the most of his yards on a 55-yard reception in the fourth quarter. In Week 3 against a Tampa Bay team that is strong against the run, the Packers will almost certainly have to throw more. This may mean more targets for Watkins in a Packers receiving corps that has yet to establish a clear pecking order.

2. Aaron Jones

Aaron Jones emerged as the focal point of the green and yellow offense. Jones made Chicago tacklers miss on his way to 132 yards and a touchdown on 15 rushes. He also had three catches for 38 yards and another score on a flip toss off jet action. Jones’ 18 touches more than quadrupled his previous week’s eight, but the team captain never grumbled and just prepared for whatever task was in store.

1. Aaron Rodgers

Star QB Aaron Rodgers finished 19-of-25 for 234 yards, two touchdowns, and a 131.1 passing rating. He demonstrated on Sunday that he can move the ball well by spreading the wealth. He connected with eight different receivers and gained 10 first downs through the air. Consequently, Rodgers continued to own the Bears.

Four different players caught three passes each: Watson, Aaron Jones, Sammy Watkins, and Randall Cobb. Watkins was the only one who saw four or more targets that night.

Take note that Rodgers is unlikely to force-feed the football to just one pass-catcher this season. As a result, we may not see Rodgers put up MVP-caliber stats. However, by playing smart, efficient football, Rodgers can still make this one of the top attacks in the NFL.

Having Allen Lazard back in the lineup after missing Week 1 with an ankle injury helped, but Rodgers seemed much more at ease with his receiving corps on Sunday than he did in Week 1.