On a night in which the Atlanta Falcons opened up their new stadium, they came out on fire in a convincing 34-23 win against a new look Green Bay Packers defense. The Packers did not have an answer for them on defense throughout the night. They looked overwhelmed from the beginning and they will fall to 1-1 to begin the 2017 season. Here are the biggest takeaways.
Week Two Green Bay Packers Takeaways
Defense Wins Championships
If the Packers want to contend for a Super Bowl bid in 2017, they must find a way to limit the scoring of the opponent. They have made it a bad habit to allow an insane amount of points per game for the opposing team. As good as Aaron Rodgers is, he cannot routinely put up 40 plus points to outscore the opposition. In a crucial point of the game in the fourth quarter, the Packers needed a stop and had the Falcons in third down situations two different times, and could not hold them. If the Packers want to truly contend, this will not be good enough. Dom Capers should be on the hot seat if the Packers don’t improve defensively throughout the year.
Kevin King Shines in Debut
After a shaky preseason, Packers first round cornerback Kevin King did not allow a reception on four targets. King looked up for the task on every play that went his way, taking over for a struggling Damarious Randall in the first quarter. He successfully defended Julio Jones in the end zone and made a very nice tackle on a swing pass from Matt Ryan midway through the second quarter. If he continues to take advantage of his opportunities, he could be the Packers starting corner before the season ends.
Don’t Blame the Tackles
Coming into week two, the Packers were without right tackle Bryan Bulaga, and left tackle David Bakhtiari. The Packers turned the reins over to Kyle Murphy and Justin McCray. Murphy was a sixth round draft choice in 2016 and started last week at right tackle and performed well in the win against Seattle. Despite a few early mistakes, Murphy settled in and did a respectable job protecting Rodgers’ blindside. McCray is a undrafted free agent who was a long shot to make the Packers’ roster. McCray committed a few penalties, but overall had a good game against one of the better pass rushers in the league, Vic Beasley.
Overall, this will be a tough loss to swallow for Packers fans. The defense was not up for the task and the offense is still trying to find its identity after a very sluggish start to the season.