The Green Bay Packers won 14 games in 2019, compiling a 13-3 regular season record and a home victory in the Divisional round of the playoffs. Many tremendous individual plays contributed to that success, and with the summer upon us we at Acme Packing Company have ranked our favorites from the entire season.
Compared to 2018, when the Packers finished 6-9-1, 2019 was much more fun and had far more memorable plays to look back on. This year’s countdown was one of the toughest to decide in recent memory, with the top two plays separated by a single point. 11 APC contributors pitched in, each ranking our 15 favorite plays in order. After compiling the rankings, we finalized our top ten and will present them in reverse order over the next several days.
Keep it here at APC over the next two weeks as we reveal our picks for the top ten plays of the Packers’ 2019 season. Today we begin the countdown at number 10 with a tremendous combination of play-calling and individual effort at a crucial point in a postseason game.
The Packers have a stronger recent playoff history with the Seahawks than any other team outside of the San Francisco 49ers. Seahawks fans no doubt remember Brett Favre’s final playoff win with the Packers as well as Matt Hasselbeck demanding the ball and declaring his intention to score. And while Packers fans don’t have any recent crushing playoff losses at the hands of the Seahawks to avenge, other than [MEMORY REDACTED], Seattle has been a persistent obstacle and presented a formidable challenge in the 2019 playoffs.
The Packers had the advantage of getting the Seahawks at Lambeau Field, but found out shortly before the game that they’d be without starting right tackle Bryan Bulaga. A bit shorthanded on offense, the Packers needed to execute well and then bank on a solid performance from their occasionally hit-or-miss defense to put the Seahawks away.
The Packers raced out to a 21-3 halftime lead, but for some reason, no lead against the Seahawks seems safe. Seattle seemed primed to play spoiler early in the second half, too. Russell Wilson and the Seahawks offense took the opening kickoff and marched 69 yards in 10 plays for a touchdown. As Wilson heated up, the Packers need a response.
They got one on the next drive.
After Aaron Rodgers threw incomplete on the first play of the drive, Aaron Jones carved out four yards on the second. Faced with a 3rd and 6, Rodgers found Jimmy Graham for 27 yards and a first down, one of three times the former Seahawk helped the Packers convert a third down.
After another four-yard run by Jones, the Packers found themselves in a 2nd and 6 from the Seahawks 40-yard line.
Perhaps in a preview of their 2020 offense, the Packers lined up for this play in a three tight end set featuring Jimmy Graham, Marcedes Lewis, and Jace Sternberger. Davante Adams, the lone receiver, was split wide to the left of the formation.
Facing man coverage from Tre Flowers, Adams motioned to a short split just before the snap, then cut up and across the field as though he was running a crossing route. As Rodgers executed a play action fake to the left, Adams stuck his foot in the ground and cut abruptly toward the left sideline, creating a huge throwing window for Rodgers.
Adams snagged the pass and quickly turned upfield, angling around Flowers as he tried to close the gap and outracing safety Jordan Simone to the end zone for his second touchdown of the day.
Though it had a relatively simple design, this play accomplished something significant: it put Davante Adams in a position to do what he does best — embarrass a single defender with precise route running. Adams, in a play reminiscent of his catch-and-run TD in the playoffs against Dallas as a rookie, did just that.
More importantly, though, Adams’ touchdown gave the Packers some crucial cushion in their lead over the Seahawks. Wilson and the Seattle offense rallied throughout the second half and actually had a chance to take the lead with their final drive of the game. Had it not been for a timely call by Matt LaFleur and the ultra-precise route running we’ve come to expect from Adams, Seattle might have instead been trying to run out the clock, with the Packers scrambling to get another chance to get the win.