In the season’s first six weeks, the Packers’ defense, led by former Washington defensive coordinator Joe Barry, had allowed 15 touchdowns on its opponents’ 15 trips inside the red zone. Washington crossed the Green Bay 20 four times in the second half alone Sunday and managed one measly field goal with the game all but decided in the fourth quarter.
Coupled with a block on Chris Blewitt’s first career field goal attempt and a turnover on downs in the second quarter, Washington scored three points on six trips inside the Green Bay 30. Terry McLaurin had a big game, finishing with seven catches for 122 yards and a 40-yard touchdown grab in the first quarter, but he also had a rare drop in the end zone.
Taylor Heinicke makes one crucial mistake: Heinicke was charged with a lost fumble when he was hit from behind on Washington’s opening drive of the second half, and he threw an interception in the end zone late in the fourth quarter, but the Washington quarterback’s biggest blunder in his first career game against the team he and his late father bonded over came on a short run that should have capped an impressive drive with a touchdown.
After the Packers took a 21-7 lead in the third quarter, Heinicke led Washington to the Green Bay 3. On third down, he tucked the ball and scrambled to his right. While he appeared to have a clear path to the end zone, he initiated a dive forward just short of the goal line. After he celebrated his apparent score with a Lambeau leap, officials reviewed the play and ruled that he had given himself up before the ball crossed the plane. Heinicke was stuffed for no gain on a quarterback sneak on the ensuing fourth-down play.
Aaron Rodgers stays hot for Green Bay’s pass-heavy attack: The NFL’s reigning MVP capped Green Bay’s opening drive with a 17-yard touchdown pass to his favorite receiver, Davante Adams. Washington did a decent job limiting Adams — who finished with six catches for 76 yards — for the remainder of the game, but Rodgers had plenty of success spreading the ball around to his other targets.
On a nine-play scoring drive before the half, Rodgers connected with Allen Lazard five times, including for a 10-yard touchdown on a back-shoulder throw with Danny Johnson in coverage. Lazard had 10 catches all season before Sunday. On the third play after Heinicke’s lost fumble to start the second half, Rodgers picked on rookie linebacker Jamin Davis, who was no match for Robert Tonyan on a 20-yard touchdown grab. Rodgers finished 27 for 35 for 274 yards and three touchdowns and shouldered the load for an offense that had only 15 carries for 57 yards.
Defense gets pressure: The front four was the least of the Washington defense’s problems against the Packers. Montez Sweat registered a sack on Green Bay’s first drive, and Jonathan Allen forced a three-and-out by dropping Rodgers for a loss of 13 yards on the Packers’ next possession. Allen added another sack in the first half, and he and Sweat combined for all six of Washington’s quarterback hits.
Washington forced at least one turnover for the third straight week, but Landon Collins’s fumble recovery came with the Packers leading by 17 and looking to run out the clock in the fourth quarter. Getting off the field remained an issue for defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio’s unit; the Packers converted 6 of 12 third downs.
Read below for highlights from the game.