Read any recaps of the Green Bay Packers’ 34-23 loss to the Atlanta Falcons and you’ll see the same themes throughout: injuries here, slow start there, penalties everywhere.
But amidst the negativity and concern, a bright spot emerged: Green Bay’s most recent top pick, Kevin King.
King was immediately thrown into the deep end of the NFL’s talent pool, tested against the league’s most talented receiver Julio Jones. And the No. 33 overall pick in April’s draft responded by doing more swimming than sinking.
King played in 46 snaps with the Packers defense in Week 2, good for 79 percent of the action and a big boost from the six plays he was involved in the previous week. He recorded three tackles — including an impressive open-field stop of Falcons running back Tevin Coleman — and tallied his first career NFL pass break up.
On second-and-9 in the second quarter, Jones ran down the middle of the field with King trailing. Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan saw the opening and threw the ball to Jones, but King timed his dive perfectly and swatted it away.
It was a brilliant play, and one that summed up King’s first game as a significant member of the Packers defense.
With injuries to Davon House and Kentrell Brice lingering in the defensive backs room, it will be interesting to see King’s role in the Packers as they prepare for their Week 3 battle against an 0-2 Cincinnati team.
Other notes from Sunday’s snap counts:
— Jordy Nelson was in the game for seven plays before leaving the game in the first quarter due to a hamstring injury. He played 93 percent of the snaps in Week 1.
— Despite the injuries to Green Bay’s receivers, Jeff Janis played just one snap. Geronimo Allison, playing in his first game of the season, had 61 snaps and Trevor Davis, who had six snaps in Week 1, compiled 17.
— Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Morgan Burnett were the only two Packers defenders to play every snap.
— Fifth-year defensive lineman Quinton Dial filled in for an injured Mike Daniels and saw 57 percent of the action after not seeing the field in Week 1. He finished the day with three total tackles.