The Green Bay Packers were embarrassed at home on Thursday night, losing 34-20 against the Detroit Lions. It was Detroit’s fourth consecutive win over Green Bay, and it did not seem as close as the two-touchdown difference would make it appear.
Of course, this is because the Packers spent most of the night battling from down multiple scores. After Rudy Ford intercepted Jared Goff on the first series of the game, the Packers offense could generate nothing and settled for a field goal.
That 3-0 lead early in the game was the only lead the Packers would see. The offense was shut out for the remainder of the half while the Lions put up 27 unanswered points. The defense did the team few favors in the game, but it was not like they were given much time to rest. The offense went three-and-out time after time after time in the first half.
In short, it was a complete team failure from all three phases. In the locker room afterwards, Aaron Jones had some strong words for all the young players on the offensive side of the ball.
Green Bay Packers Running Back Aaron Jones: “We Can’t Spot Teams Like That”
The Packers’ failures on offense cannot all be laid on one player or position group. Jordan Love played well in the second half, but once again struggled to get his team going in the first half. The offensive line allowed 22 pressures on 36 drop backs, the most they’d given up in a single game in nearly two years.
The wide receivers did not always run the correct routes either. The communication between pass catchers and Love was not where it should have been, as evidence by the interception Love threw near the goal line when Romeo Doubs broke off his route.
It is frustrating because it is obvious that the Packers’ offense is so close to being an elite unit. However, they make a lot of mistakes that keep them from reaching their full potential. Perhaps this is to be expected with such a young team, but it is also a team that expects to win now.
According to Ryan Wood of USA Today, Jones, the longest-tenured player on the offense with David Bakhtiari going on IR, stood up and sent a strong message to his young teammates after the game:
“I just told them that these teams in the league are good, and we’re a good team too, but you can’t come out and spot teams like that. We did it last week, and it worked out for us, but that’s not always going to be the case.
“I told the guys that I’m proud of them because they showed their character, that we’re not going to give up, and we’re not going to quit, but we’ve got to start a lot faster. And we’ve got to keep our defense off the field for as long as they’re on the field.
“Because when you need a stop, they’ve been on the field for the while game. But it’s going to take one play at a time, and it’s just a mentality. I think now that we’ve had these past two games, they feel what urgency is when your back is against the wall, and if you can just play like that all the time, it’s deadly.”
Like Sunday’s game against the Saints, the Packers offense did not find the end zone until the second half. They did not even pick up a first down until late in the second quarter, and that initial first down was due to the Lions’ committing a penalty and third and short.
Aaron Jones Could Help the Green Bay Packers Get Off to a Faster Start
Jones, playing for the first time since injuring his hamstring in Week One, got six total touches and gained just 14 yards. He had five rushes for 18 yards and one reception for -4 yards.
In Green Bay’s Week One win over the Chicago Bears, Jones had 11 touches (nine rushes and two receptions) for 127 yards and two touchdowns.
But in that game, too, Green Bay did not start giving Jones the ball much until the second half. He is clearly the most dynamic player on offense, yet it seems like head coach Matt LaFleur forgets that he has him.
Again, the offensive line struggled and perhaps trying to rush the ball more with Jones would not have been very successful for most of the game. However, the Packers never attempted to establish the run early. Of course the defense was left out on the field for so long! Green Bay didn’t attempt to run the ball until the second quarter.
One really has to wonder if Jones was 100% healthy after injuring his hamstring against the Bears. If not, and if they were only going to give him six touches, why activate him in the first place?
Dive deeper into the Green Bay Packers’ recent performance and Aaron Jones’ strong message to the offense after their loss to the Detroit Lions. Understand the dynamics, challenges, and key moments of the game. For more insights and updates, check out our Green Bay Packers News section.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, Aaron Jones is expected to play in Week 4 for the Green Bay Packers. Despite being listed as questionable on Friday's injury report with a hamstring injury, he is active for the game against the Detroit Lions.
Aaron Jones of the Green Bay Packers signed a lucrative four-year, $48 million contract in 2021, demonstrating his value as a running back. Despite some struggling to secure fair compensation, Jones secured a significant payday.
Aaron Jones took a pay cut because he believes in being a team player and helping the team bring in more talented players. By freeing up some money, he shows his commitment to the team's success. His decision reflects his selflessness and dedication to supporting the organization.