Packers drop to 4-7 after loss to Tennessee

Green Bay has now lost 6 of its last 7 games
Luke Reimer

A 333-yard and two touchdown performance from Ryan Tannehill put a quick end to the Green Bay Packers’ momentum, as the Tennessee Titans took down the Packers 27-17 on Nov. 17 in Green Bay.

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers finished the game with 227 passing yards and two touchdown passes. Rookie wide receiver Christian Watson was once again the benefactor of Rodgers’ touchdown passes, scoring both of them.

Watson has now recorded five touchdowns in the past two games, accounting for 30 of Green Bay’s last 48 points. Watson became the first rookie wide receiver for the Packers to record multiple touchdowns in back-to-back games since Max McGee in 1954.

The loss stops any momentum that Green Bay had from its emotional win against Dallas last week, as the Packers have now lost six of their past seven games.

It was obvious that Green Bay’s gameplan was to stop Titans running back Derrick Henry — something that they did well, holding the All-Pro to 87 rushing yards on 28 attempts. Henry accounted for two total touchdowns, running one in and passing one on a jump-pass.

While Henry failed to top the 100-yard mark, Tennessee took control of the clock in the first half, as Green Bay totaled just 19 plays. One of Tennessee’s drives lasted 19 plays for just over 10 minutes in the second quarter.

“Obviously, extremely disappointed right now,” said Packers head coach Matt LaFleur. “To put on a performance like that, I just don’t even know what to say. It was nothing like a few days ago, and that’s why you’re only as good as your last game.”

Veteran wide receiver Randall Cobb found his way back into the lineup, returning from injury. Cobb led the team in receiving with 73 yards on six catches.

Allen Lazard added another 57 yards on five catches. In terms of rushing, the Packers only ran 19 times, with Aaron Jones accounting for 40 yards, A.J. Dillon accounting for 13 and Watson recording three.

“They stopped the run. They gloved us in the back end,” said Rodgers.

After releasing wide receiver/punt returner Amari Rodgers the week prior, Keisean Nixon provided the best return of the season, returning a punt to the Tennessee 44-yard line late in the fourth quarter.

Down 10, the drive instantly stalled, as a Jones reception, a Jones rush and an incompletion intended for Lazard forced fourth down with 5:26 remaining. On fourth down, Rodgers’ pass, intended for Lazard, was incomplete and the Titans took back over.

From there, Tennessee’s drive lasted just 16 seconds as a Preston Smith sack forced the Titans to punt.

Following the punt, Green Bay put together a 10-play drive, with Rodgers throwing for 49 yards on the drive. Faced with fourth-and-one from Tennessee’s 44-yard line, Jones was stuffed by Titans linebacker David Long Jr., forcing Green Bay to turn the ball over on downs.

Tennessee opened the game strong, with Henry accounting for 18 total yards. The drive was capped off with Tannehill completing a 14-yard touchdown pass to backup running back Dontrell Hilliard.

Green Bay got on to the board late in the first quarter, as Rodgers hit Watson in the back of the end zone on a free play for 14 yards. Cobb provided the big play on the drive, taking a crossing route for 24 yards. The subsequent extra point was blocked.

Henry scored his first touchdown of the game on a 10-play drive from Tennessee that included a 9-yard reception from wide receiver Robert Woods on a third-and-seven.

Green Bay answered back on its first drive on the second half on a Mason Crosby field goal to cut the lead to five. Scoring continued to pick up as Tennessee immediately marched down the field, culminating in Henry’s touchdown pass to tight end Austin Hooper.

Green Bay’s next score came on the next drive with a Watson 8-yard touchdown, followed by a Jones two-point conversion.

A 16-yard receiving touchdown from Hooper proved to be the dagger, as Tennessee’s defense held Green Bay out of the end zone for the remainder of the game.

“They were obviously more physical and made a lot more plays than we made,” said LaFleur. “There was no consistency in terms of being complimentary, offensively and defensively.”