As we continue to prepare for the start of our countdown of the Packers’ best plays of 2017, we keep going with an honorable mention — one of the plays that just missed out on our top ten.
Ten APC contributors voted on last year’s best plays, and we’ll begin our official countdown on Monday. But for now, let’s look back on a great play from Brett Hundley and Davante Adams in the latter stages of the season.
It’s the Sunday after Thanksgiving, and the Packers are in Pittsburgh to play the 8-2 Steelers. Brett Hundley is starting his fifth straight game in relief of Aaron Rodgers as the Packers enter off a brutal 23-0 shutout loss to the Baltimore Ravens at home.
On this play, Green Bay faces a third and 3 for the Packers on the opening drive of the second half. The score is tied at 14 with the Packers moving the ball a bit and nearing midfield.
Brett Hundley lines up in the shotgun with Adams split wide to the right side of the field, Jordy Nelson wide left, and Randall Cobb in the slot on the right. Steelers cornerback Coty Sensabaugh is giving Adams about a seven-yard cushion. With just three yards to go, a slant-flat route combination with Adams and Cobb would make for an easy pickup and a move of the chains; however, Adams runs a stutter-and-go, getting Sensabaugh to bite hard on his double-move.
Hundley rears back to heave the football up the right sideline, and Adams already has three yards of separation by the time he comes into the television frame. The ball is a bit underthrown, as Adams slows a bit to catch the ball at the Steelers’ 23. Seeing safety Mike Mitchell closing from the middle of the field, Adams cuts inside at the 15-yard line, making Mitchell’s momentum carry him too deep as #17 easily avoids a shoestring tackle attempt. With Nelson blocking for him downfield at the five-yard line, Adams takes a great angle to the far hash mark to avoid Sensabaugh and leap over the goal line for a go-ahead score.
This was Hundley’s third touchdown pass on the day, and it gave the Packers a seven-point lead early in the third quarter. The Packers got an interception from Blake Martinez on the next series, but an attempt to extend the lead to two possessions was no good on a 57-yard field goal try. The next series after that saw Pittsburgh tie the game; the Steelers would eventually win on a field goal by Chris Boswell as time expired, pushing the Packers’ record down to 5-6 on the season.
Stay tuned for the full top ten countdown, which kicks off on Monday.