Packers offensive line faces massive test vs. Eagles defensive front

Now healthy, the Green Bay Packers offensive line has played some of its best football in the last two games. However, this group will be tested against a very good Philadelphia Eagles defensive front.

Of the many issues plaguing the Packers offense this season, offensive line play has been one of the biggest problems, as mentioned above, due to injuries.

Through 11 games, the Packers have used nine different offensive line combinations this season. In fact, before the Dallas game, Green Bay opted to start the starting five for the entire game.

The previous issues negatively affected the rest of the offense, including, most importantly, limiting the playbook. Green Bay felt the need to rely heavily on the quick passing game, which led to a reluctance to push the ball downfield. This led to a shorter field by playing closer to the defensive line.

Robert asked Tonyan to chip, which would limit his impact in the passing game. There was also a reluctance to rely on the run game at times – not to mention Aaron Rodgers looked skeptical in the pocket on several occasions.

But things have gotten better in the last two games, even if things haven’t been perfect. Green Bay racked up over 200 rushing yards against Dallas, and the offensive line held up against two very good pass-opening units, but the running game was terrible against Tennessee.

Like the Titans, the Eagles have a defensive front that has been one of the best in both run stopping and after quarterback. According to PFF ($$), Philly ranks second in run defense by DVOA, along with the seventh-most pressures and third-most sacks, according to PFF ($$).

“Collectively, it’s all guys,” Matt LaFleur said Wednesday when discussing the Eagles’ defensive front. “You can’t turn a guy into a zero. They do a good job of showing some of the situations, whether it’s in down situations where the offense is offering each other for their guys and having each other’s matchups, and I think they all feed off each other. So I think it’s one of the best defensive lines in all of football.”

The Eagles are able to generate this pressure mostly by rushing the quarterback and rarely blitzing. That’s, in part, why the Eagles’ defense leads the NFL in turnover differential, including the most sacks. With four rushing to the house, that means extra linebackers can drop into coverage, and it allows Philadelphia’s secondary to play much more aggressively.

“They have a really good scheme,” LaFleur added. “I think they’re enough to keep you off balance and make you think in an offensive way. But they can press with four players, or whether they play with five linemen or four players, they can press like that and it opens you up a little bit. The more people in coverage, the easier it is to hide people and get those interceptions.”

For the Packers, any success they can get offensively by continuing to play the running game, as it creates opportunities in the passing game and sets up the play action that Green Bay has been so effective at this season.

The Packers tried to do that early against Tennessee, but fell short. This led to more drop shots, less use of key LaFleur concepts, and more reliance on the passing game – something the team simply wasn’t good enough to execute on a regular basis.

Tennessee put the Packers in a no-win situation. Either continue to run the ball for two or three yards or try to spread things out, which is not the strength of this offense.

I expect the quick passing game to be a part of Green Bay’s game plan in an effort to reduce the Eagles’ pass rush, but it can’t be the only way they move the ball — trying to string together long coverages regularly. not a good recipe for a lot of points. The Packers should once again try to establish the run immediately — for the reasons mentioned above — and they may try to run out more of their guns, which is what they were most successful at against Tennessee.

Just like the Titans were able to do, the Eagles are well-equipped to put the Packers in a no-win situation on Sunday because of their dominant defensive front. It won’t be easy, but the Packers’ offensive line will need a top-level performance to win. Otherwise, it will be another long night for the Green Bay offense.


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