Good, bad and ugly from Packers’ 25-22 win over Bengals

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The Green Bay Packers have won four straight games after escaping Cincinnati with the wildest of overtime wins. A streak of five missed field goals late in the fourth quarter and overtime ended with Mason Crosby finally hitting a 49-yard game-winner with just under two minutes left in overtime.

The Packers are now 4-1 entering next Sunday’s NFC North showdown with the Chicago Bears.

Here’s the good, the bad and the ugly from the Packers’ win in Cincinnati:

The Good

Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Big road win: The Packers didn’t have All-Pro cornerback Jaire Alexander, All-Pro left tackle David Bakhtiari, All-Pro edge rusher Za’Darius Smith, Pro Bowler Elgton Jenkins, deep threat Marquez Valdes-Scantling and starting center Josh Myers but still managed to go on the road and beat a good football team. The Packers’ response to both the letdown in Week 1 and all the important injuries since has been fantastic.

12 to 17: A weekly feature here. Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams connected 11 times for 206 yards and a touchdown. Rodgers was intercepted while targeting Adams deep on an extended play in the first half, and the Packers quarterback missed Adams on what could have been the dagger touchdown in the fourth quarter, but it’s hard to argue with the production. Adams had six catches of 16 or more yards.

Packers running backs: Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon created 196 total yards last week against the Steelers. The duo was productive again on Sunday, totaling 133 rushing yards on 22 carries and 55 receiving yards. Dillon caught a touchdown pass, and Jones’ 57-yard run could have been the game-changing play late in the fourth quarter. Over the last two games? 384 total yards for Jones and Dillon.

Clutch Campbell: Packers linebacker De’Vondre Campbell produced a turnover-creating play for the fourth straight game in the fourth quarter or overtime. His interception to open the extra period should have been the game-clinching play. He also had a tackle for loss in overtime.

Clean game: The Packers and Bengals combined for exactly four penalties (two each) despite playing almost five full quarters. Less of the officials and more of the action created a much better product.

The Bad

Green Bay Packers kicker Mason Crosby (2) reacts after missing an extra point. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Mason Crosby: Three misses on game-winning field goals probably should have cost the Packers a win. Crosby got redemption in overtime, of course. But remember, his missed extra point in the first half was at least partly responsible for the game being tied late in the fourth quarter. Four missed kicks certainly qualifies as a rough day at the office for any kicker, especially one as consistently reliable as Crosby.

Red zone defense: The Packers defense delivered big stops late, but Joe Barry’s group still hasn’t kept the opposition from scoring a touchdown in the red zone this season. Opponents are now 13-for-13 after the Bengals got two red-zone touchdowns on Sunday. The Packers are the only team in football without a red-zone stop.

Special teams: The missed field goals – and the continuing protection issues on the right side of the field goal unit – were troubling, but the Packers also had a poor punt setting up a touchdown drive, a missed extra point and another long kick return allowed. The third phase is still struggling under Maurice Drayton, and it almost cost the Packers a win on Sunday.

All brake, no gas? The Packers got awfully conservative at various points in the game, especially late. Settling for field goals is often a recipe for keeping an inferior opponent in the game. And while the Packers always feel good about Mason Crosby making kicks, being more aggressive with the kicker struggling was probably the better play. Matt LaFleur admitted he was probably too conservative late in the game.

The Ugly

Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Meltdown to end the half. The Packers were in full control at 16-7 late in the first half, but another meltdown immediately let the Bengals back into the game going into halftime. With 51 seconds left, the Packers gave Joe Burrow almost nine seconds from snap to throw to find star rookie Ja’Marr Chase, who got behind safety Darnell Savage and ran into the end zone for a 70-yard touchdown. Savage, running at full speed, just missed the football in the air, allowing Chase to make an uncontested catch. The Packers safety acknowledged the miss after. The quick score got the Bengals within two going into halftime and was reminiscent of the 49ers’ late touchdown in the first half in Week 3.

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