ReFo: Packers @ Vikings, Week 12
The Packers were rolling coming into this game and the Vikings had been struggling with a couple of tough losses in recent weeks. This had all the makings of a one-sided affair that should never have been a contest. Though Minnesota ended up losing again, the fact it was as close as it was says something about how they played, and had a couple of plays swung their way they could have pulled off the upset.
For the Packers, you accept that division games are always tough, and they’ll be happy enough with getting out of dodge with the victory, however it came.
Packers – Performances of Note
Eddie Lacy, HB: +6.0
Breakdown: Eddie Lacy is a fantastic running back, and more importantly for a team like Green Bay – a complete back. He was the driving force behind their offense in this game, gaining 138 yards from scrimmage and scoring a pair of touchdowns.
Signature Stat: 58% of Lacy’s rushing yardage came after first contact.
David Bakhtiari, OT: -4.2
Breakdown: He held up pretty well in pass protection, which in today’s NFL is more than half the battle, surrendering just two hurries from 35 pass blocking plays, but Bakhtiari struggled far more in the run game, causing several holes to collapse and runs to be re-routed.
Signature Play: Q3, 10:33. Here Bakhtiari was beaten badly inside by DE Everson Griffen for a TFL, only compounding the error by holding him in the process.
Mike Daniels, DE: +1.2
Breakdown: Being honest, nobody else really stood out either way for Green Bay, so I’m picking a player that flashed and has really been playing well this season in Daniels. He notched a sack, two more hits and four hurries in the game, but many were a product of the QB being flushed his way rather than any immense work on his part.
Signature Play: Q2, 8:10. On this play Daniels gets a nice push up front, but needs Bridgewater to move to his leverage to get the hit.
Minnesota Vikings – Performances of Note
Joe Banyard, HB: +2.3
Breakdown: Much was made of the Vikings signing Ben Tate during the week, but this was the week we finally got to see Joe Banyard given a chance, and he looked like Minnesota’s best running back (AP set aside). Banyard split time with Jerick McKinnon but was the more impressive in this game.
Signature Stat: Banyard played 30 snaps to McKinnon’s 39 but outgained him 5.6 yards per touch to 3.6
Matt Kalil, OT: -0.5
Breakdown: We have given Matt Kalil a lot of flak this season so it’s only fair to point out when he holds up OK. As you can see, his grade has a minus sign in front of it, so that’s about as far as we can go in terms of praise this time, but it represents only his third game not graded in the red this season and his second in three weeks.
Signature Stat: This was the first game all season that Kalil has not allowed his quarterback to hit the ground. He surrendered three hurries, but no sacks or knockdowns.
Xavier Rhodes, CB: +2.1
Breakdown: This is really a joint performance of note with both Rhodes and Josh Robinson holding up very well against the Packers receiving corps and Jordy Nelson in particular. They still got beaten on occasion, but were rarely out of position badly and were all over their receivers at the catch point on several occasions.
Signature Stat: Combined Rhodes and Robinson were thrown at 16 times, allowing eight catches for 72 yards while breaking up two of them. Rhodes, in particular, allowed just two catches for 18 yards.
PFF Game Ball
There is nowhere to look for this other than Eddie Lacy. He was the standout player of the game and the final game-sealing drive was his performance in a nutshell, grinding out tough yards to seal the win.
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