Green Bay Packers: The Good, the Bad & the Ugly through 10 Games

GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - NOVEMBER 10: Aaron Jones #33 of the Green Bay Packers celebrates a first down against the Carolina Panthers during the third quarter in the game at Lambeau Field on November 10, 2019 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - NOVEMBER 10: Aaron Jones #33 of the Green Bay Packers celebrates a first down against the Carolina Panthers during the third quarter in the game at Lambeau Field on November 10, 2019 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

The Green Bay Packers are 8-2, so let’s take a look back at the good, the bad, and the ugly from their first 10 games of the season.

Since the Green Bay Packers’ first preseason game, all the way through week 10 against Carolina, I’ve given the good, the bad, and the ugly from each of their performances. Now with the bye week just about in the rear view mirror, before we begin looking ahead to their final six games, let’s take a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly from the Packers’ first 10 games of the season.

Fortunately with Green Bay sitting at 8-2, and at the top of the NFC North, we have a lot more good than bad and ugly to go through. Of course there are more positives and negatives that have taken place than what I’ll cover here, but these are my biggest takeaways from each category so far this season.

The Good

Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams 

Under Matt LaFleur this Green Bay Packers’ offense has been revitalized this season and the usage and production from the running backs has been a big reason why. For the most part this season, Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams have been getting much more consistent touches than in the past and have become weapons in the passing game as well.

This season Jones is already nearing 1,000 total yards as he has 589 on the ground along with another 354 in the air and a whopping 14 combined touchdowns. When Davante Adams missed those four games, it was Jones who stepped up and became Aaron Rodgers favorite receiving target. Meanwhile, Williams has 291 yards on 4.5 yards per carry with six total touchdowns, five of which have been receptions.

The production and contributions from this dynamic duo as been phenomenal and they’ve helped take some of the burden off of Rodgers’ shoulders this season, which has greatly benefited the entire offense.

Elgton Jenkins

It didn’t take long for most to notice Elgton Jenkins in training camp and in the preseason over the summer. And while many expected that he would take over the starting job at left guard eventually, I can’t imagine many anticipated that he’d be this good already.

According to Pro Football Focus, in Jenkins’ 349 pass-blocking attempts this season, he hasn’t allowed a single sack or a quarterback hit. Not to mention that of all the guards this season, Jenkins is the only one with at least 500 snaps and doesn’t have a sack or a hit to his name.

Za’Darius Smith and Preston Smith

From their role as leaders off the field, to their play on it, the free agent signings of Za’Darius Smith and Preston Smith have been absolute home runs. There’s no question that in addition to the changes that needed to take place on the roster, the Green Bay Packers also needed a cultural change. And from the moment these two landed in Green Bay, they’ve been the catalysts for that change.

Then on the field, they’ve been fantastic as well. This season the duo has already totaled 18.5 of the Packers total 25 sacks, while also accumulating 95 total pressures. I was thrilled when Green Bay made these two additions in the offseason but so far they’ve a much larger impact than I would have hoped for and have been tremendous upgrades at the edge position.

Matt LaFleur

Believe it or not, it isn’t easy being a first time NFL head coach. Let alone for the Green Bay Packers and all of the expectations that come with the job. But to put it simply, Matt LaFleur has been a stud. From little things like trying to get the crowd more involved, to larger things like relying more on the running game and utilizing Jones and Williams in the passing attack, LaFleur’s attitude and play calling has greatly expedited the mini-rebuild that the Packers found themselves in this past offseason.

Even when they have lost, they’ve been able to bounce-back in the following game with two victories. And those performances say a lot about the team as a whole, but it especially says a lot about the head coach.

Aaron Rodgers doesn’t have to be Super Man

The downfall of this Packers team in recent years was that Aaron Rodgers had to be Super Man in order for them to win. However, while he has still shown us that he is capable of doing so, the great thing is that he doesn’t have to be brilliant every week for the Packers to contend.

This season we’ve seen the defense shut teams down for multiple quarters, or come away with a timely sack or turnover. While on offense, the Packers have been able to rely on Aaron Jones to lead them to victory as well. With the moves made by GM Brian Gutekunst this offseason, it was clear that they were trying to provide Rodgers with more help, and so far we’ve seen that the Packers can win multiple ways. Which is scary for the rest of the NFL.

The Bad

The Run Defense

Of course over 10 games not everything is going to be all sunshine and roses and one area that really needs to improve for the Green Bay Packers is their run defense. Particularly between the tackles this season they have been ripped apart by opposing running backs. In total, Green Bay gives up an average of nearly 127 rushing yards per game this season which ranks 25th in the NFL.

WR production other than Adams

Credit where credit is due, the Green Bay Packers’ receivers did have a fine performance against the Oakland Raiders but other than that one game, their production has been quite sporadic. In fact, since the Detroit game they are catching just over 50 percent of their passes for 447 yards with just one touchdown. And a large chunk of that production has been from Allen Lazard.

Fortunately, the Packer offense has been able to rely more on running the ball, using their backs in the passing game, as well as the tight ends, so they’ve still been able to put up points for the most part. However moving forward, it would be great to see more consistency from those other receivers.

The Ugly

The Return game

I won’t title this category “special teams” since Mason Crosby has been very good as has J.K. Scott for the most part. However, the kick and punt return game still remains an issue for this Green Bay Packers team. According to Football Outsiders, the Packers are ranked as the third worst kick return team and the sixth worst punt return team. In fact, here is a wild stat for you, the Packers total punt return yardage this season is -8. That’s right, -8.

It’s a new coach and a lot of new players but the results remain the same. Instead of the return game being a weapon, it is once again more of a liability for the Green Bay Packers.

The Chargers game

This game makes the ugly list, not because they lost, but due to the way that they lost. From the first snap of the game, this team didn’t look like they wanted to be out there playing. Or perhaps they thought they’d come away with an easy win. Either way, it was sloppy and ugly to watch.

dark. Next. Tramon Williams having a sneaky good season

Green Bay would finish with just 184 total yards on a measly 3.8 yards per play with eight penalties and Los Angeles held the ball for over 11 minutes longer than the Packers did. Overall it was a lack-luster performance and one that they were fortunately able to rebound from against Carolina.