As we continue to prepare for the start of our countdown of the Green Bay Packers’ best plays of 2017, we reveal two more honorable mentions -- 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, we look back on similar great plays from wide receivers Jordy Nelson and Davante Adams.
Nelson: Before Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone and sent the season into a tailspin, the Packers found themselves in an unexpected Week 3 dogfight against the Cincinnati Bengals. Despite hosting the game at Lambeau and Bryan Bulaga making his regular-season debut, Green Bay could shake Cincy. A final drive brought Rodgers and company into the red zone with under a minute remaining and a chance to force overtime.
Adams: The Packers have struggled to move the ball for nearly four full quarters against the winless Cleveland Browns, but Brett Hundley manages to pull himself together during his team’s final possession of regulation. Largely by targeting Davante Adams, Hundley manages to move Green Bay inside the red zone with less than two minutes remaining. After a few short gains through the air and on the ground, the Packers face first and goal with just over 20 seconds to work and no timeouts.
Nelson: The Packers come out in shotgun with Adams alone to the left, tight end Martellus Bennett off the right tackle and Geronimo Allison and Jordy Nelson to split out on the right. Just before the snap, Nelson shifts closer to the slot receiver to create extra space along the boundary. Nelson then runs a 3-yard out with plenty of cushion between him and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick. Though Kirkpatrick makes a valiant play on the ball to close the passing window, Rodgers fits it past the diving defensive back. Nelson catches the pass cleanly while landing both feet in bounds.
Adams: In a shotgun formation with two receivers to either side and Adams located furthest to the left, the Packers try to exploit a size mismatch by throwing to an end-zone fade. Adams starts his route by faking inside before breaking back to the corner over Jason McCourty. Adams turns McCourty around and hauls in a well-placed Hundley pass for the equalizer.
In both instances, the touchdowns and subsequent extra points force overtime. The Packers would ultimately emerge victorious in each game, with Rodgers setting up the game-winning field goal via a 72-yard shot to Geronimo Allison and Adams delivering a spiraling catch-and-run score to notch Green Bay’s final win of the season.