FOX Sports Wisconsin’s 2018 Green Bay Packers season awards
FOX Sports Wisconsin
While Aaron Rodgers put up some decent statistics, he just wasn't his usual self in 2018. Green Bay's most consistent player, and its best, was wide receiver Davante Adams, who set career highs with 111 catches for 1,386 yards and 13 touchdowns. The receptions were the second-highest in Packers history and the yards sixth. Adams was money in the red zone, where he had a league-high 12 TDs. Adams, who played in 15 games, had five contests with 100+ yards and only one game with less than 50 -- and in that he had six catches and a TD.
Blake Martinez has become a tackling machine. After recording 142 tackles in 2017, he upped it to 144 in '18, second-highest in the NFL. For the second straight season, the third-year linebacker had 10 tackles for loss and he also posted career highs in sacks (5) and quarterback hits (6).
Mike DinovoMike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Drafted in the third round in 2016, one round before Martinez, Kyler Fackrell had seen more bench time than playing time his first two seasons. In Year 3, Fackrell starting making an impact. Playing nearly 60 percent of the defensive snaps, Fackrell led the Packers in sacks with 10.5 -- no one else on the team had more than six -- recording three-sack games against Buffalo and Seattle. He also topped Green Bay with 12 tackles for loss and tied for first in quarterback hits, with 12.
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Rookie of the Year
Several Packers rookies contributed in 2018, but you really want your first-round draft pick to come in and make an impact and that's exactly what Jaire Alexander did. While his stats might seem modest -- 66 tackles, three tackles for loss, two fumble recoveries, an interception and .5 sacks -- others recognized his play. Pro Football Focus had him on its all-rookie team while Alexander received a vote at defensive back in the AP All-Pro team.
Brad RempelBrad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Offensive linemen barely get the credit they deserve as is, but maybe it's about time David Bakhtiari gets recognized for being one of best Packers offensive linemen in recent memory. Bakhtiari played all 16 games protecting Aaron Rodgers' blind side, and appeared in 96 percent of the offensive snaps. Despite somehow not being named to the Pro Bowl, he was rated the best left tackle in the NFL by Pro Football Focus and named to the site's All-Pro team for the third straight year and second straight on the first team. Bakhtiari was also named a first-team AP All-Pro after making the second team in 2016 and '17.
Play of the Year
Way back in Week 1 (hey, it was a rough season) against Chicago at Lambeau Field, Green Bay was trailing 23-18 with just over 2 1/2 minutes remaining. On a third-and-10 from their own 25, Aaron Rodgers had some time and found Randall Cobb over the middle at the 36. The Bears' defender fell down and Cobb was off to the races, making a couple of moves at the finish to complete a 75-yard touchdown and give Green Bay an eventual 24-23 win over the Bears.
Jeff HanischJeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
The above game against the Bears certainly could qualify, as the Packers came back from a 20-3 deficit against a divisional rival. But that was in Week 1. We're going to instead go all the way to …. Week 4, when Green Bay pulverized Buffalo 22-0. The Packers led 16-0 and coasted to an easy win. While Green Bay racked up 423 yards of offense, this is about the defense, which was so maligned in 2017. The Bills gained just 145 yards, had a long rush of 11 yards, were sacked seven times and committed three turnovers. It was a defensive performance long in the waiting. Green Bay hadn't shut out an opponent since Week 8 in 2010 and hadn't done it at Lambeau Field since Week 6 in 2009.
Arizona came into Green Bay on Dec. 2 with a 2-9 record, having lost three straight (including a 45-10 pasting by the Chargers the previous week) with both of its victories having come against San Francisco. The Packers had lost back-to-back road games to Seattle and Minnesota, but were back home where they were 4-0-1 on the season. Green Bay, though, was lethargic all game, gaining just 325 yards and converting only 3 of 14 third-down opportunities. The Packers tied the score at 17 with 5:26 remaining, and, after rookie quarterback Josh Rosen led the Cardinals to a field goal with 1:41 left, were in a position to tie the game but Mason Crosby missed from 49 yards out as time expired. It was a humiliating loss and ended the head coaching career of Mike McCarthy in Green Bay, as he was fired later that same night. Making matters worse, Arizona would lose its final four games -- the next three by a combined 62 points -- and then fire first-year head coach Steve Wilks.