Packers offense still searching for answers in red zone
In 2020, former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator and now former Denver Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett famously coined the red zone the “gold zone” in honor of the movie “Austin Powers in Goldmember.” That year, the Packers found the right mojo to form one of the best red zone offenses in NFL history, but the past two years haven’t been the same for a red zone offense that isn’t tricking anyone with its resemblance to fool’s gold.
Through the first five weeks of the 2021 season, Green Bay was ranked 27th in red zone efficiency with a 55 percent touchdown rate that paled in comparison to the near 77 percent mark they posted the year before. Rather than panicking, Matt LaFleur talked about the need for patience.
“I’m not as concerned as everybody else about our red zone. I think we’ll be fine,” LaFleur said last October via The Athletic. “We’re five games into this thing. Certainly, we set a standard a year ago of what it should look like, and we haven’t lived up to that standard. And that falls on me.”
“I’ve got to do a better job of giving our guys plays that can be successful versus whatever look the opponents come out in. We’ll continue to work on it, but I’m not going to panic over it quite yet.”
Over the final 12 games, the Packers saw some improvement but still finished 18th in red zone efficiency. Now at the tail end of a new season, Green Bay is still having the same issues and is in jeopardy of finishing with its lowest touchdown rate since 2013.
Obviously, losing Davante Adams hasn’t helped. On top of being one of the deadliest red zone targets in the NFL, he was Aaron Rodgers’ most trusted receiver on a shortened field. However, LaFleur knew he wouldn’t have Adams back in March, yet still hasn’t found a way to consistently manufacture touchdowns inside the opponents’ 20-yard line.
On Monday, LaFleur talked about how the loss of Adams has impacted their performance in the red zone, including how it has changed the way opposing defenses have played against them.
“I think that we have to look at everything, and certainly, when you have a guy like that that you can kind of lean on in the pass game, it definitely makes it a little bit easier,” he said. “We will look at everything and try to come up with some things that can counter some of the things that teams have done to us. We’ve seen a lot of loaded boxes where they’re daring you to throw the football and it makes it very, very difficult at times to run it in.”
“Certainly, we’ve got to come up with some better stuff.”
In their most recent game against the Miami Dolphins on Christmas Day, Green Bay went 2-5 scoring touchdowns in the red zone but was fortunate to catch three interceptions in the second half to steal a win on the road. That type of performance will be tough to get away with moving forward, especially against a red zone defense like the Minnesota Vikings, which gave the Packers trouble in Week 1.
“I think it really started Week 1 vs. Minnesota where they stuffed us down there,” LaFleur said. “I’m sure they’re looking at all that, and they’ve done a pretty good job in the red zone as well defensively.”
The Vikings enter the week ranked 15th in defensive red zone efficiency. In week 1, Green Bay went 1-3 in the red zone and lost 23-7. Getting into the end zone this time around will be crucial for the Packers at a point in the season where the margin for error is slim to none. Another loss would essentially end their chances of making the playoffs, so LaFleur better pull out all the stops to capitalize on his offense’s chances when they reach the “gold zone.”
ANOTHER PRODUCTS FOR FANS GREEN BAY PACKER : GREEN BAY PACKER SWEATSHIRT FOR FANS
The Man, The Myth, The Hair! Matthews for dark backgrounds Classic T-Shirt
That’s What I Do I Play Football I Love Green Bay And I Know Things Packers Football Team Essential T-Shirt
Sundays are for Rodgers Essential T-Shirt
Super Smith Bros Classic T-Shirt
Sundays are for The Packers Long T-Shirt
Sundays Are For The Packers Classic T-Shirt
Sunday Funday Essential T-Shirt
Sugar and Spice Green Bay Classic T-Shirt
Savage D-Damarious Randall Classic T-Shirt
AND SEE MORE GREEN BAY PACKER PRODUCTS HERE : ALL ITEM GREEN BAY PACKER
SEE MORE FOOTBALL STORE : dallascowboys FAN STORE – pittsburgh steelers FAN STORE – MIAMI DOLPHINS OFICIAL STORE – NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS FAN STORE
OUR SYSTEM STORE : NBA 3D STORE – MLB 3D STORE – NFL CLOTHES FOR FAN STORE – NFL 3D STORE – RUGBY FAN STORE