Upon Further Review: Jones, Packers keep momentum going with win over Washington

(AP Photo/Morry Gash)
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It wasn’t quite a statement win — beating a three-win team by five points hardly qualifies — but the Green Bay Packers finally have a little momentum going after posting consecutive wins for the first time since October.

Aaron Jones led the way, piling up 192 yards from scrimmage and a rushing touchdown against the Washington Redskins after gaining just 60 yards combined in Weeks 12 and 13.

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Aaron Rodgers was held largely in check after throwing four touchdown passes against the overmatched Giants last week. Rodgers threw for 195 yards and a touchdown and was sacked four times, a stat line that more closely resembles the Packers’ blowout loss to the 49ers than their win over the Giants.

The defense did its job, holding Washington just 262 net yards, while sacking rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins four times with an interception.

The stakes weren’t particularly high Sunday, but that changes in Week 15. Up next: A pair of battles that should decide the division. The Packers host the resurgent Bears, then visit the Vikings in Week 16.

PLAYER OF THE GAME

Jones went off again after posting consecutive duds against the Panthers and 49ers. The third-year running back rushed for a season-high 134 yards and a touchdown on just 16 carries, 11 yards off his career high. Jones was also the Packers’ leading receiver with 58 yards, accounting for nearly 200 yards from scrimmage against Washington.

DON’T FORGET ABOUT ME

Tight end Robert Tonyan caught his first touchdown of the season and the second of his career Sunday, corralling a 12-yard pass from Rodgers in the back of the end zone for the Packers’ second score of the game. Tonyan has plenty of competition for snaps at the position with veterans Jimmy Graham and Marcedes Lewis on the roster, while the Packers drafted former Texas A&M star Jace Sternberger in the third round this year. A former undrafted free agent, Tonyan lost five games to a hip injury earlier this season after making a highlight-reel catch against the Cowboys. With Graham, 33, and Lewis, 35, closer to the ends of their careers than the beginning, Tonyan is a player to watch the rest of the way and beyond.

THAT MOMENT

That final score is much, much closer than the Packers would have liked. It could have been even closer had veteran safety Adrian Amos, signed away from the rival Chicago Bears last spring, not come up with a clutch interception to close out the first half. Amos snapped up his second interception of the season just five plays after Rodgers fumbled late in the first half, stopping Washington at the Packers’ 41-yard line and sending Green Bay into the second half up 14-6.

THIS NUMBER

He’s not quite the dominant force he once was, but more than a decade into his career Adrian Peterson is still piling up rushing yards against the Packers. The longtime Vikings star reached 14,000 career rushing yards Sunday, churning out 76 yards and a touchdown on 20 carries, three attempts short of his season high. He’s racked up quite a few of those against Green Bay. Peterson rushed for a two-yard score in the second quarter, and now has 16 career touchdowns against the Packers, his most against a single opponent.

THEY SAID IT

“He said he was a fan of me. That meant a lot. He’s somebody I look up to as far as the position.” — Washington quarterback Dwayne Haskins on meeting Aaron Rodgers

“Anytime you’re going against a young quarterback, we’ve got to get pressure on him, make him make some bad throws.” — Kenny Clark on pressuring Haskins

WHAT’S NEXT

A few months after posting just three points back in Week 1 the Bears are looking a little different. Quarterback Mitch Trubisky, who threw for just 228 yards on 45 attempts in that game, a 10-3 win for the Packers, threw for 244 yards and three touchdowns for a 115.5 quarterback rating on Thursday, as the Bears beat the Cowboys for their third straight win. Meanwhile, the Vikings remain just one game behind the Packers after beating the Lions behind a strong performance from their pass rush. Head coach Mike Zimmer’s defense appears to have its swagger back after piling up five sacks against Detroit.