The Green Bay Packers struggled against the run in 2015, giving up big plays on the ground that eventually contributed to the team’s downfall once they got into the playoffs.
However; in 2016, the run defense has been stellar behind defensive lineman Mike Daniels along with defensive coordinator Dom Capers focus on stopping team’s rushing attacks.
“We’re playing tough,” Daniels said, via Packers News.
“And guys are flying around to the ball, and we’re just getting physical with the other team. That’s just that freaking simple. We have different guys now, too. Different personalities. I’m an older guy, so if I’m out there telling everybody to get mean and physical, young guys are listening, and they’re doing it. It’s that simple.”
“A year ago,” Capers said, “if we had eliminated the long runs we would have been a top run defense. But that’s what got us.”
“You’ve got to bring the right guys in,” Daniels said, “and our scouting department does an awesome job of doing it. It really started when Johnny Jolly came back in 2013, and the attitude shift started to change every year, and every year we’ve gotten tougher, more physical, more violent, playing with more of an attitude. To stop the run, that’s how you have to be.
“We take pride in doing it. For a long time, the strength of our team was our defensive backs. The focus on stopping the run might have not been as strong, but our defensive line room has a lot of pride. Not saying it wasn’t before, but now you can see it.”