Sports

Instant Reaction: Packers 17, Seahawks 9

The Green Bay Packers overcame a sluggish start on offense en route to a 17-9 victory over the Seattle Seahawks in the 2017 regular season opener at Lambeau Field.

Some initial thoughts on the win:

  • The most obvious takeaway from week one will be the play of the defense, particularly along the defensive line. Most notable were the performances of Nick Perry and Mike Daniels, who finished with 1.5 sacks apiece while helping to torment Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson and plug up the Seahawks running game all afternoon. Daniels most significant defensive sequence came early in the second half, when on back to back plays he got to Wilson, forcing a fumble on the second. The turnover set up a Ty Montgomery touchdown run to put Green Bay up 7-3, and they never looked back. It was a promising performance as a whole defensively, though the challenge will be amped up next week in Atlanta.

  • Green Bay’s offensive line was noticeably weaker without Bryan Bulaga at right tackle. Granted, Seattle’s defensive front will be among the toughest the Packers will face this season, but it was clear at certain points that Aaron Rodgers was uncomfortable due to the constant stream of pressure coming his way. The Packers found it extremely difficult to get the running game going as well, though the holes seemed larger and more frequent as the game wore on. The lack of consistent positive runs made things a little easier on Seattle defensively, and the Packers will hope they can get better production in that area as the season goes along.

  • Despite being sacked four times, Rodgers had his usual moments of brilliance, including a 32-yard third quarter touchdown strike to Jordy Nelson on a free play where the quarterback caught Seattle with 12 men on the field. The two-time MVP finished with 311 yards on 28 of 42 passing, including the scoring toss to Nelson as well as a head-scratcher of an interception on the team’s first possession of the ballgame. All in all, an efficient enough performance for week one.

  • The Packers somewhat showed off the multiplicity in their offensive attack, with Rodgers completing passes to six different receivers. Randall Cobb led the way with nine catches for 85 yards, with Nelson hauling in seven passes for 79 yards and a touchdown. The two new free agent acquisitions at tight end both got involved, too—Martellus Bennett caught three passes for 43 yards, while Lance Kendricks snagged two for 18 yards. Meanwhile, Ty Montgomery, in his first full season as a running back, carried the rock 19 times, including the first touchdown of the game on a six-yard run. It was interesting to finally see the diverse attack in a meaningful game, and it will only get more interesting as the personnel groupings and formations get more creative.

  • The Packers made it out of week one without any devastating injuries. Recently signed free agent Ahmad Brooks did leave the game with a concussion, so he will need to clear the protocol before he can return. Damarious Randall left the field briefly due to cramping, but ultimately returned and finished the ballgame. The only other injury of note was Jason Spriggs with a hamstring issue. Overall, nothing too worrisome.