Falcons ground game next test for Packers rush defense

Atlanta Falcons running back Bijan Robinson (7) runs the ball towards the end zone for a...
Atlanta Falcons running back Bijan Robinson (7) runs the ball towards the end zone for a touchdown during the first half of an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Sep. 10, 2023, in Atlanta. The Atlanta Falcons won 24-10. (AP Photo/Danny Karnik)(Danny Karnik | AP)
Published: Sep. 14, 2023 at 7:29 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - For the second straight week, the Packers face a tough ground game. This one will be different with Atlanta’s dynamic duo of young running backs, instead of a mobile quarterback.

A week ago, both Tyler Allgeier and rookie Bijan Robinson made impacts on the ground and through the air. Combining to rush for 130 yards, and averaging better than five yards a carry.

Allgeier had a pair of short rushing touchdowns, while Robinson did his scoring in the passing game with an 11 yard touchdown.

“He can do anything really. Catch out of the backfield. They’ve got a really good outside zone scheme, he can do all that stuff. He’s the real deal. Got to have our eyes open and make sure we get him on the ground,” said defensive lineman Kenny Clark.

“There’s talented guys all over this league. You can’t really treat anybody like any one thing. You’ve kind of got to be ready for anything, honestly,” said safety Darnell Savage. “Honestly, a DB’s whole thing, you want to catch picks and stuff like that. This week we’ve really got to earn that. We’ve got to tackle the ball carrier first and get them out of that run game a little bit.”

Atlanta’s offense finished with just 221 total yards, and the running backs made up a large chunk of that with 177 all-purpose yards between the two of them. A key on Sunday for the Packers will be to make quarterback Desmond Ridder beat them.

“He’s accurate. He makes great decisions. I think they do a great job of putting him in some pretty good situations. Especially with a lot of their passing game coming off the run game,” said head coach Matt LaFleur.

No matter how much you scout the other team, for the Packers defense, it all comes back to their mentality.

“It aint really about them. It’s just about us. Our preparation and what we do. Be physical with our play style is going to take care of whatever they throw at us,” said cornerback Keisean Nixon.

“Our mindset every day is be the most dominant unit on the field. Make plays on the ball, turnovers, stop the run, force them to pass and get after their passer,” said Clark.