ST. LOUIS – The numbers were not, shall we say, positive. Except for one: 20, as in the number of carries Green Bay Packers running back Alex Green got during Sunday’s 30-20 victory over the St. Louis Rams.
For the game, Green gained just only 35 yards on those 20 attempts – an average of 1.8 yards per attempt. And that was with the help of a 5-yard gain on a swing pass that wasn’t meant to be a run, but was scored as such because the pass was thrown backward behind the line of scrimmage and thus considered a lateral.
Green’s best run was a 15-yarder during a third-quarter run. He also had two 5-yard gains, including the lateral. His other 17 carries? Two were 1-yard gains, four were 2-yard gains, three were 3-yard gains, four were for no gain, one was for minus-1, two were for minus-2 and one was for minus-4. That’s eight attempts that failed to gain or lost yardage.
Nevertheless, much like Green’s 22-carry, 65-yard game last week against Houston in his first start for injured veteran Cedric Benson, it was vital for coach Mike McCarthy to commit to calling run plays even if they didn’t result in productivity in order to slow the pass rush against quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
That said, McCarthy admitted that the struggles in the run made it tougher on the offense.
“Our run game efficiency was not where it needed to be. But it was important to maintain some balance, especially when you’re on the road,” McCarthy said. “I thought our pass protection, once we settled down after the first quarter, was really good and I thought Aaron played exceptional again today.”
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