Packers Snap Counts: Jones excels in first start

For the second straight week, a Green Bay Packers rookie stole the show on defense.

A week ago, it was cornerback Kevin King. During Sunday’s 27-24 overtime win over the Bengals, safety/hybrid linebacker Josh Jones stepped up in a big way, flashing his versatility and potential while playing in all 61 defensive snaps.

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It was Jones’ first career NFL start, as he didn’t appear in Week 1 and played in 29 snaps (50 percent) in Week 2.

The 2017 second-round pick recorded 12 tackles (three for loss), two quarterback hurries and two key sacks that kept the game within reach.

In the first half, the Bengals were facing third-and-8 just outside of field-goal range. Jones went untouched on the edge and wrapped up Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton for a loss of six yards, forcing Cincinnati to punt it away.

His next sack was even bigger.

With the Bengals threatening to score (and already leading 21-14) in the third quarter, Jones escaped tight end Tyler Kroft’s block with ease and clung to Dalton’s left leg until the veteran quarterback went down to push Cincinnati back to Green Bay’s 30-yard line. On the next play, Bengals kicker Randy Bullock missed a 48-yard field goal attempt.

Last season, the Packers’ lack of depth on defense was exposed in the playoffs. It’s early, but this story looks like it might have a different ending, thanks to back-to-back impressive showings for Jones and King, a pair of electric second-round picks.

Other notes from Sunday’s snap counts:

— After leaving last week’s loss to the Falcons in the first quarter, wide receiver Jordy Nelson played in 96 percent of the snaps on offense. He finished with 52 yards on six catches and the game-tying touchdown reception with 17 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter.

— Defensive tackle Ricky Jean Francois, who the Packers released Sept. 12 and brought back Sept. 21, played in 12 snaps (20 percent) on Sunday.

— Offensive linemen Jahri Evans, Kyle Murphy, Corey Linsley and quarterback Aaron Rodgers are Green Bay’s only four players to play in every offensive snap thus far. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, who played in every snap last season, and Morgan Burnett are the only two defensive players yet to leave the field after three games.

GAME 3: BENGALS (OFFENSE)

PLAYER Plays (70) %
Evans 70 100%
Murphy 70 100%
Linsley 70 100%
A. Rodgers 70 100%
Taylor 68 97%
Nelson 67 96%
Bennett 67 96%
Adams 67 96%
Montgomery 65 93%
Bulaga 47 67%
Allison 47 67%
McCray 25 36%
Kendricks 19 27%
R. Rodgers 10 14%
J. Williams 5 7%
Ripkowski 3 4%

GAME 3: BENGALS (DEFENSE)

PLAYER Plays (61) %
King 61 100%
Jones 61 100%
Clinton-Dix 61 100%
Burnett 61 100%
Evans 54 89%
Randall 52 85%
Matthews 49 80%
Martinez 47 77%
Clark 43 70%
Fackrell 41 67%
Lowry 37 61%
Brooks 32 52%
Dial 18 30%
Thomas 14 23%
Jean Francois 12 20%
Hawkins 9 15%
Odom 8 13%
Rollins 7 11%
Adams 4 7%