Green Bay Packers grade card: Position evaluation vs. Lions

Eric Baranczyk and Pete Dougherty
Green Bay Press-Gazette
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Green Bay Packers kicker Mason Crosby (2) looks subdued at the end of the gamer during the Green Bay Packers 31-23 loss to the Detroit Lions at Ford Field, Detroit, Sunday, October 7, 2018.   Rick Wood/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. USA

Here's a position-by-position analysis of how the Green Bay Packers graded out during their 31-23 loss Sunday to the Detroit Lions:

Quarterbacks: Aaron Rodgers (108.0 rating) held the ball too long, too often, and lost two big fumbles. In the second half in catch-up mode he showed how difficult he can be to defend. Grade: C

Running backs: When called on, Aaron Jones (seven rushes for a 5.7-yard average, two catches for 19 yards), Jamaal Williams (six rushes for a 5.5-yard average) and Ty Montgomery (four rushes for a 3.8-yard average, one catch for 23 yards) performed well. They’re not the reason the Packers lost. Grade: A-

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Wide receivers: With two starters (Randall Cobb and Geronimo Allison) out, Davante Adams came through with a big day (nine catches, 140 yards). Rookie Marquez Valdes-Scantling (seven catches for 67 yards) recovered well from a shaky start. But the passing stats were padded by a fourth-quarter deficit, and when Rodgers scrambled rookies Valdes-Scantling and Equanimious St. Brown didn’t come uncovered. Grade: C-

Tight ends: Jimmy Graham had six catches but failed to come through on two tough potential touchdown passes. Grade: C

ANALYSISEnd-zone plays reveal dropoff in Jimmy Graham's game

Offensive line: This group protected well enough — it’s tough to keep NFL pass rushers at bay for five seconds. Grade: B-

Defensive line: Kenny Clark, Mike Daniels and Dean Lowry were solid as always against the run, and Clark and Daniels do a good job collapsing the pocket. But nobody’s getting off blocks quickly enough to actually get the quarterback to the ground. Grade: B-

Outside linebackers: Nick Perry, Clay Mathews, Reggie Gilbert and Kyler Fackrell combined for zero hits on Matthew Stafford. They also gave up the edge a few times in the run game. Grade: D

Inside linebackers: In his first extended playing time, rookie Oren Burks had trouble holding his ground against the run but covered OK. Neither he nor Blake Martinez made a play that stood out. Grade: C.

Cornerbacks: Kevin King and Josh Jackson got beat a few times but had their moments in coverage, too. Grade: C

Safeties: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix had a sack but gave up another red-zone touchdown by leaving his zone and was stiff armed to the ground on a 60-yard pass play to Kenny Golladay. Grade: C-

Special teams: Mason Crosby missed five kicks (four field goals and an extra point), and a punt that officials ruled hit King in the back gave Detroit the ball at the Packers’ 1. That’s 20 points. Grade: F

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