The Packers’ defense freezes the Vikings’ Cousins-less offense at a cold Lambeau Field

Green Bay Packers' Rashan Gary sacks Minnesota Vikings' Nate Stanley during the first half of...
Green Bay Packers' Rashan Gary sacks Minnesota Vikings' Nate Stanley during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)(Morry Gash | AP)
Published: Jan. 3, 2022 at 1:19 AM CST
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WSAW) - From 30 points allowed to just ten.

A Packers defense that was burned in Minnesota indoors went outside, turned down the temperature and froze a Vikings team missing their starting quarterback.

“We did what we said we wanted to do. We went and got off the field, stopped them on third down and gave the offense the ball as many times as we can,” linebacker Rashan Gary said.

The easy win may have been made more possible by Sean Mannion getting the start under center instead of Kirk Cousins, who tested positive for COVID-19 earlier in the week. The Vikings’ longest completion until the final two minutes was a tipped ball to their center for 21 yards.

“We just didn’t allow him to have a comfortable pocket. I know guys are trying to push the pocket and make him scramble,” linebacker Preston Smith said.

And at the freezing Lambeau Field, the Packers kept Dalvin Cook and the Vikings run game stuck at the line of scrimmage. Cook had 13 rushing yards on nine carries.

“I thought our guys did their job and their assignments. They did their assignments and I thought Joe did a great job. We wanted to account for the run game,” head coach Matt LaFleur said.

A defense that has been missing pieces put another solid performance together as they continue to piece together their normal starting 11 for a title run after clinching the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

“When you get on the field, there’s a standard here. There’s nothing that’s expected of you less than greatness, hard effort and execution of your assignments,” Gary said.

Matt LaFleur called this performance the most complete game of the season in special teams, defense and offense.

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