How the Packers Overcame Injuries to Montravius Adams and Vince Biegel

The Packers defense received the typical criticism in the wake of the 35-31 victory over the Cowboys. In my opinion, the Packers defense held up remarkably well against a Dallas roster built to exploit Green Bay’s weaknesses.

Third-round picks Montravius Adams and Vince Biegel were both sidelined by injuries shortly after arriving in Green Bay that have limited their availability. Adams has been active once – Week 3’s overtime win against the Bengals – and played four snaps. Biegel has yet to suit up in either a preseason or regular season game and remains on the PUP list.

In years past, the Packers would have expected both Adams and Biegel to play significant roles from day one. Their injuries would have meant increased opportunities for preseason standouts like Reggie Gilbert, Brian Price and Christian Ringo.

In their place, Green Bay added veterans Ahmad Brooks, Quinton Dial and Ricky Jean Francois.

Imagine a Green Bay defense without Brooks, Dial or Jean Francois on the field. In their place are raw young players like Brian Price, Christian Ringo and Reggie Gilbert against Dallas’ formidable offensive line. For what it’s worth, only Price has made a significant contribution to another team this season, playing about 28 percent of the defensive snaps for the Cowboys.

Can you see Dak Prescott being under as much pressure as he was Sunday? Would Ezekiel Elliott have been held to 15 carries for 32 yards through three quarters?

The margin of error in a win like Sunday’s is so thin. Consider these two scenarios:

  • Down 21-15, Green Bay’s defense forced Dallas to punt early in the third quarter. On 3rd and 12, there was the veteran Brooks to take away Prescott’s first read on the pass. The Cowboys weren’t able to convert, and Aaron Rodgers led the Packers offense to a touchdown to take a 22-21 lead.
  • With 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, the Cowboys had the ball with a two point lead. On second down, Prescott hurried his throw thanks to Green Bay’s pass rush, and wide receiver Terrance Williams tipped the pass right into the hands of cornerback Damarious Randall.

Credit the Packers front office and coaching staff for seizing the opportunity to acquire quality veterans. It’s signings like these that will give Green Bay a better chance for postseason games at Lambeau Field.

AnalysisGary Zilavy