Packers Defense Impresses NFL Twitter as Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Beat Rams

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 20, 2022

Green Bay Packers linebacker Preston Smith (91) celebrates a sack in the first half of an NFL football game against the Los angles Rams in Green Bay, Wis. Monday, Dec. 19, 2022. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
AP Photo/Morry Gash

It's rarely been pretty for the Green Bay Packers this season. Monday night was no exception. But for once, the defense stepped up in a major way.

Green Bay stifled the beat-up Los Angeles Rams offense, holding it to 156 yards in a 24-12 victory.


Rasul Douglas gets the interception!<br><br>📺: <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LARvsGB?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LARvsGB</a> on ESPN<br>📱: Stream on NFL+ <a href="https://t.co/GEDpprVg3K">https://t.co/GEDpprVg3K</a> <a href="https://t.co/Ma5DnCnJNW">pic.twitter.com/Ma5DnCnJNW</a>

The Packers defense has not earned plaudits often this season. But on Monday night, NFL Twitter tipped its cap to that unit, namely edge-rusher Preston Smith:

Zach Kruse @zachkruse2

Packers defense has 9 QB hits, 6 TFLs, 5 sacks, 5 pass breakups and a takeaway tonight. Front has been disruptive against a bad OL.

Rob Demovsky @RobDemovsky

The Packers have five sacks tonight, two by Preston Smith, and it's their most in a game since Christmas Day last year against Baker Mayfield with the Browns.

Gregg Rosenthal @greggrosenthal

The Packers offense has mostly fixed its issues, 8th in offensive DVOA since Week 7. It's always been more about the defense.

Kyle Malzhan @KyleMalzhan

This was always how it was supposed to be for the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Packers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Packers</a>.<br><br>The defense plays super well to limit points on the board. The offense would utilize their running backs in many situations, figure it out to put up points, and be serviceable.

DEFEND RODGERS 2022-2023 @Packermomo17

Kenny Clark, Preston Smith, Quay Walker, and Jaire Alexander are having the game of their lives right now. Amazing work.

Peter Bukowski @Peter_Bukowski

Preston Smith will never be flashy but he's so solid. Rarely missed games. You need guys like that on your team.

Zach Kruse @zachkruse2

Preston Smith always shows up in primetime. Always.

Ryan Wood @ByRyanWood

Preston Smith sack count: 4 in the past 4 games.

Lance Allan @lanceallan

Preston Smith going nuts right now <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Packers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Packers</a>

Zach Kruse @zachkruse2

Tonight might have been the Packers' most complete game of the season.<br><br>Offense was efficient and consistently effective. <br>Defense was dominant and disruptive.<br>Special teams created big plays.

You could make the argument that the Rams offense was more dreadful than the Packers defense was superb. Fair enough. Baker Mayfield, in his second game as the team's quarterback, finished just 12-of-21 for 111 yards and a touchdown with an interception and took five sacks.

The Rams were just 4-of-11 on third down. They held the ball for only 22 minutes, 41 seconds and managed 72 rushing yards. It was ugly.

The Packers didn't exactly light it up. The running back duo of Aaron Jones (126 yards from scrimmage, one touchdown, one fumble lost) and AJ Dillon (71 yards from scrimmage, two scores) carried the load. Aaron Rodgers threw for 229 yards and a touchdown with an interception.

But the defense kept Mayfield uncomfortable and ensured the Packers offense didn't need to go wild. Because of that, the 6-8 Packers still have playoff hopes.

Lily Zhao @LilySZhao

Aaron Rodgers said "there's still a lot to play for" on the postgame broadcast. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Packers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Packers</a> QB smiling after Green Bay moves to 6-8.

Kyle Malzhan @KyleMalzhan

<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Packers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Packers</a> GM Brian Gutekunst meets HC Matt LaFleur in the tunnel to the locker room after Green Bay's win and they share a big high five. <br><br>The first step is a success. 3 more to go &amp; anything can happen.

Daire Carragher @DaireCarragher

It's Christmas and the Packers are still playing meaningful football. <br><br>A quarter of the NFL is not. Be grateful.

Robert Griffin III @RGIII

Packers are still ALIVE.

Rob Demovsky @RobDemovsky

Updated: Packers playoff chances now 12.2%. A loss would've put it at 0.8%. <a href="https://t.co/wiajfPJ5op">https://t.co/wiajfPJ5op</a>

It's still a long shot. For Packers fans, the immortal words of Lloyd Christmas come to mind: "So you're telling me there's a chance."

There's a chance, Green Bay. If the defense can repeat this performance, those odds will improve.