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Cheese Curds, 9/26: Packers win ugly, but Bakhtiari’s return spurs confidence

Happy victory Monday to everyone, but especially the Packers’ left tackle.

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NFL: Atlanta Falcons at Green Bay Packers Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

A win is a win, and the Green Bay Packers now sit at 2-1 on the season with a head-to-head tiebreaker over a key NFC rival. Yes, 2022 is starting out much the same as the 2021 season for the green and gold, but this year’s week 3 victory in Tampa was uglier than last year’s week 3 win in San Francisco.

Still, an ugly win is still a win, and the Packers can take what happened on Sunday afternoon and build on it. Of course, one of those building blocks is the return of all-world left tackle David Bakhtiari, who played 34 snaps while alternating series with Yosh Nijman. Bakhtiari looked like his old self — though he did in his comeback attempt last year as well — but this time he sounds much more excited about how he felt in his return than following the week 18 game in Detroit last season.

Bakhtiari coming back should be an emotional lift for this team moving forward, but it is also a tangible benefit. Beyond just his own elite ability, the Packers have helped Nijman out with lots of chip blocks from running backs and tight ends, something they have felt less necessary when Bakhtiari is out there. And moving Nijman back into a key backup role will only be a benefit for the depth on the offensive line.

All in all, things are looking up for this team. 2-1 after three games is about where many expected them to be, though they may have made their way on a different path than anticipated. Now they have a chance to plow through a favorable stretch before playing the Buffalo Bills in about a month’s time.

Frustrating, yes, but ‘bigger picture’ not looking too bad for 2-1 Packers |
There's no reason to apologize for a win like Sunday's. It came over one of the NFC's top teams, on the road in a place that has been a house of horrors for the Packers, and against an excellent defense.

De'Vondre Campbell said Packers defense anticipated two-point play |
The play the Bucs called from the 7-yard line was one the Green Bay D had practiced against all week. Campbell made the play, but even if he hadn't, Darnell Savage's alert play had him in position to break it up as well.

David Bakhtiari returns, Romeo Doubs steps up and more notables from Packers win - The Athletic ($)
This should have been the Doubs breakout game, and it probably would have been if the Packers' offense had kept up its strong early play.

Bakhtiari Returns Against Buccaneers, Says Comeback Feels ‘Completely Different’ -
The Packers' left tackle says he feels "physically completely different" than he did coming out of last year's week 18 game in Detroit. That's a great sign for his recovery and chances of staying in the lineup for next week against the Patriots.

Matt LaFleur explains rotating LT David Bakhtiari during first game back | Packers Wire
Meanwhile, the rotation between Bakh and Yosh Nijman actually worked reasonably well -- the pass protection was good and neither player's play seemed to suffer. LaFleur mentioned the weather as a factor, but also noted that he was in Houston when the Texans tried something similar back in the late 2000s.

Swarm of bees inhabits goal post in Green Bay Packers-Tampa Bay Buccaneers game | ESPN
Apparently FOX showed this issue on the broadcast, but I definitely missed it. Aaron Rodgers has wondered in the past about why bees are disappearing -- maybe they're just all going to Florida.