The Green Bay Packers were missing a number of key players on offense in Monday’s game against the New York Giants, and that list may well continue to grow by the time they play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this coming Sunday. The week 14 loss to the Giants saw the team without Christian Watson in addition to Aaron Jones and Luke Musgrave, and another pair of wide receivers went down with injuries late in the game, putting their statuses for next weekend in doubt.
Rookie Dontayvion Wicks was the biggest recipient of additional playing time and targets with Watson unavailable, but he was largely unable to take advantage. Much of that was due to early inaccuracy from Jordan Love, but a late ankle injury forced him off the field and makes it unlikely that he will play for another couple of weeks.
Meanwhile, Jayden Reed also saw his snap count tick up a little bit and he saw the second-most touches on the team in this game, trailing only AJ Dillon. But he will be dealing with his own injury issues this week, as he was pulled off the field for a concussion evaluation at the very end.
Those injuries may well mean that the Packers have a primary receiver group of Romeo Doubs, Malik Heath, and Samori Touré when they take on the Buccaneers in week 15. Keep an eye on the injury reports all week long, but here’s how the team divided up its playing time in Monday’s loss.
OFFENSE (68 TOTAL SNAPS)
Jordan Love 68
Love had his worst game in months, and perhaps his worst game of the year in this contest. His accuracy looked off from the very beginning of the game, and he made a few poor decisions that led to a pair of turnovers — one interception and one fumble. His final stat line of 25/39 for 218 yards, a score, and a pick probably looks a bit better than he did for much of the game, but he did make a few key plays and great throws in the fourth quarter when the Packers needed them to make a comeback.
AJ Dillon 36, Patrick Taylor 32
With Aaron Jones out again, Green Bay stuck with Dillon and Taylor, and the latter in particular was very efficient with his touches. Dillon had 53 rushing yards on 15 carries for just a 3.5-yard average, but he also added a 35-yard reception to help his overall efficiency. Taylor, meanwhile, carried just four times but picked up 30 yards, and he added another 22 yards on two receptions.
According to the box score, new Packer Kenyan Drake did not see the field, despite the commentators saying that he made an appearance late in the first half.
Romeo Doubs 56, Jayden Reed 47, Dontayvion Wicks 43, Malik Heath 23, Samori Touré 18
No Christian Watson meant that Wicks’ snaps jumped back up over 60%, while Heath and Touré’s workloads expanded considerably as well. Wicks, Doubs, and Reed each saw at least six targets in the game, but it was odd to see Heath only targeted twice — and both on the final drive — while Touré had four passes thrown his way.
Reed’s efficiency in this game was abysmal, however, particularly on passes. The Packers desperately tried to get him going on the edge with jet sweeps and pop passes, and he had a 16-yard carry for the team’s first touchdown plus another 20 yard rush. But when targeted with passes, he caught 8 of 10 for just 27 yards, a total of 65 yards from scrimmage on 14 combined targets and rushing attempts. He left the game at the very end to be evaluated for a concussion, however, making his status this week critical to monitor.
Doubs led the rest of the receivers with 4 catches on 7 targets, but for just 32 yards. Meanwhile, Wicks saw a season-high six targets, but caught just two for 20 yards before exiting late with what appears to be a high ankle sprain. It looks like he will probably miss a few weeks in the final part of this season.
Tucker Kraft 68, Ben Sims 10, Josiah Deguara 7
Luke Musgrave’s continued absence means that Kraft remains the Packers’ primary tight end, and in this game he played every offensive snap plus another 12 on special teams for a total of 80 plays. Kraft continues to deliver, however, as he caught four passes for 64 yards, including a huge 43-yard gain in the fourth quarter. Sims and Deguara were exclusively package players in this game, seeing the field only occasionally.
Elgton Jenkins 68, Josh Myers 68, Zach Tom 68, Jon Runyan 56, Rasheed Walker 51, Yosh Nijman 17, Sean Rhyan 12
The Packers’ slight rotations continue on at left tackle and right guard, with Nijman and Rhyan each getting a couple of drives per game. The line as a whole seemed to struggle in this one, however, with a few highlight-reel blown blocks that will surely show up during tape study this week.
DEFENSE (56 TOTAL SNAPS)
Kenny Clark 47, T.J. Slaton 34, Devonte Wyatt 29, Karl Brooks 24, Colby Wooden 7
The Packers got a few splash plays from their interior line on Monday, as Clark recorded a pair of tackles for loss with Wyatt picking up another one along with a handful of QB pressures. However, they were entirely unable to contain Tommy DeVito and prevent him from stepping up and scrambling, and they got gashed by the run late in the game. Perhaps the most frustrating play was seeing Slaton time the snap count perfectly, end up three yards in the backfield, and be unable to bring down running back Matt Breida, who would slip through the line and pick up a first down.
Rashan Gary 39, Preston Smith 39, Kingsley Enagbare 20, Lukas Van Ness 14
Along with the line, the edge group was almost entirely unproductive in this game. Gary recorded the team’s only two hits on DeVito, but the team was entirely unable to turn pressures into sacks, despite going up against a banged-up and struggling Giants offensive line.
De’Vondre Campbell 56, Isaiah McDuffie 40, Eric Wilson 1
McDuffie continues to play well against the run when called into action, as he was in this game with Quay Walker injured. He had 7 tackles to tie for the team lead, including one excellent TFL on Saquon Barkley in the run game. Campbell continues to look slow, however, and had an opportunity to make a great play in coverage downfield but overran the play. Wilson’s only snap was a big one, as he came up to make a stop on Barkley for no gain on a 4th and 1.
Jonathan Owens 56, Darnell Savage 53, Rudy Ford 3
Savage left the game briefly with an injury, but was back on the field almost immediately and tied McDuffie with 7 total tackles. He should have had more, however, but whiffed on a few ugly open-field attempts including one where DeVito juked him out of his cleats. Owens was largely quiet in this game and did not show up much on the good or bad side of the tape.
Ford came up with a recovery of a muffed punt on special teams, but also was flagged for kick catch interference early in the game.
Corey Ballentine 55, Carrington Valentine 55, Keisean Nixon 44
Green Bay’s corners were not asked to do much, but they did allow a couple of big completions in key moments. Nixon in particular struggled against shifty slot receiver Wan’Dale Robinson, who led the Giants with 79 receiving yards. Valentine’s big play was a recovery and return of Barkley’s self-inflicted fumble, which set up the late go-ahead touchdown, but Joe Barry’s choice to call soft coverage on the ensuing drive led to the Giants putting the game away.
SPECIAL TEAMS LEADERS
Eric Wilson 22, Robert Rochell 17, Kristian Welch 17, Enagbare 16, Zayne Anderson 14, Owens 14, Ford 13, Taylor 13, Kraft 12, Anders Carlson 11