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Packers Snap Counts, Week 11: Matthews injury shuffles OLB unit

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The Packers got a very good performance from one of their young linebackers on Sunday, but it went for naught as the offense couldn’t get out of its own way.

NFL: Baltimore Ravens at Green Bay Packers Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers fell flat on their faces on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens, turning the football over five times — three on interceptions and two on fumbles — along with three turnovers on downs. The defense largely kept the Ravens’ offense in check, doing an excellent job against the run and keeping Joe Flacco and company under 200 total passing yards.

However, it was the mistakes that killed Green Bay on Sunday. The first drive of the game had Lambeau Field buzzing, as Hundley was slinging the ball around and the team reached the five-yard line in just five plays. However, his interception in the corner of the end zone set the tone for the entire game, as the next two series both also ended in turnovers and the offense could never sustain a drive again.

A heavy rotation went in place for the Packers at the outside linebacker position in this game, necessitated by an injury to Clay Matthews early on in the game. Fans got to see a few more snaps for Wisconsin native Vince Biegel, but it was Kyler Fackrell who saw the biggest uptick in playing time. And for all the criticism that we have given Fackrell since he was drafted, it’s fair to note that he played probably his best game as a pro on Sunday.

Here’s how the playing time broke down.

OFFENSE (67 plays)

Offensive Line

LT David Bakhtiari 67, LG Lane Taylor 67, C Corey Linsley 67, RG Jahri Evans 67, RT Justin McCray 45, RT Jason Spriggs 22

Even before McCray’s injury, the Packers were struggling on the offensive line, unable to provide significant running room for their running backs and allowing pressure on Brett Hundley with regularity. Hundley was sacked six times for 49 yards, most of which appeared to be due to early pressure through the line.

Spriggs’ return to the field was necessary due to McCray’s injury, but it was no more successful than his preseason performances as he allowed pressure on Hundley off the right side as well.

Running Backs

Jamaal Williams 59, FB Aaron Ripkowski 10, Devante Mays 5, FB Joe Kerridge 3

Devante Mays had the worst possible first offensive play that one can imagine. Running off the left side, Mays was stopped up for a loss of two but failed to secure the football with both arms and Matt Judon stripped it out. That came on the third series of the game for the Packers and was a painful blow to a team that had seen Hundley throw picks on each of the first two drives.

Williams occasionally picked up some tough yardage on short-yardage situations, but he was stopped on a fourth-and-one at Baltimore’s 36, one play after failing to pick up the necessary yardage on third-and-two. All told, Williams had a similar stat line to last week with 18 carries for 57 yards.

Wide Receivers

Davante Adams 64, Jordy Nelson 62, Randall Cobb 48, Geronimo Allison 8, Trevor Davis 1

Adams was the one bright spot on the day for this team, as he continues to demonstrate that he is deserving of #1 wide receiver money. He caught eight of ten targets for 126 yards, more than doubling anyone else’s production. Cobb caught just three passes for 34, while Nelson had two receptions for 24 yards.

Tight Ends

Lance Kendricks 38, Richard Rodgers 37

Neither tight end made any impact as a receiver, as each had just one catch for single-digit yardage.

DEFENSE (59 plays)

Defensive Line

Mike Daniels 51, Kenny Clark 37, Dean Lowry 29, Quinton Dial 24, Lucas Patrick 1

Once again, the Packers’ run game was stout, thanks in large part to the guys up front. They allowed fewer than 70 yards on the ground for the third straight game, as Alex Collins and company averaged just 2.2 yards per carry.

It’s clear that when the unit is fully healthy and playing in base, most other teams will not be able to run the ball on them. However, Clark’s injury will put that to the test in the coming weeks if he is unable to play.

Outside Linebackers

Nick Perry 39, Kyler Fackrell 34, Ahmad Brooks 26, Vince Biegel 16, Clay Matthews 13

After recording an early sack, Matthews left the game with a groin injury and he did not return. That left another 30-plus snaps to be divided up among the three backups, and Fackrell ended up taking the most. He actually had one of his best games as a pro, with five total tackles including a sack and a pair of tackles for loss.

Biegel was active in the run game, recording a TFL of his own, and he pressured Joe Flacco from the front side when Lowry got his sack, getting to the QB a split-second after the defensive lineman.

Perry did not record a tackle in the game, but he hit Flacco three times while Brooks added a TFL.

Inside Linebackers

Blake Martinez 59, Jake Ryan 45

Martinez was his usual active self in the running game with eight tackles and one for loss. However, he struggled in coverage and it appeared that the Ravens were scheming around getting him moving and out of the middle of the defense. Regularly they shifted a running back or tight end out wide to get Martinez matched up one-on-one along the sideline.

Ryan nearly matched Martinez with seven tackles and one TFL of his own. With the team playing so much base 3-4 in this game due to the Ravens’ struggling passing game, Ryan saw a heavier dose of playing time inside than usual, as Dom Capers was less inclined to drop Josh Jones down from safety to linebacker.

Safeties

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix 59, Josh Jones 59, Marwin Evans 15, Jermaine Whitehead 11

The aforementioned Jones played primarily strong safety in this game, and he had another seven tackles. Clinton-Dix had a better game on Sunday than his previous few contests and finally recorded his first interception of the year — he was in perfect coverage on Danny Woodhead up the left sideline and made a great leaping catch inside the five-yard line to take away a sure scoring opportunity.

Evans and Whitehead pitched in on the few occasions that Jones did drop to Nitro or when the Packers went in dime on third-and-long.

Cornerbacks

Davon House 58, Damarious Randall 45, Josh Hawkins 28

With Kevin King out due to his shoulder injury, the Packers lined up heavily in base with House and Randall. When they did go to nickel, Hawkins came in on the outside with Randall sliding into the slot.

None of the three players made any significant plays, and Mike Wallace was able to make a ridiculous catch over Randall for the only passing touchdown of the game — a play that saw Randall land awkwardly on his head. The corner went to the locker room immediately to get checked out but returned to the field a few minutes later, presumably being checked for a concussion or a neck injury and being cleared by the medical staff.