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What You Might've Missed: Run-stuffer supreme

Packers DL T.J. Slaton helped hold Vikings RBs in check


GREEN BAY – Minnesota running backs Alexander Mattison and Cam Akers combined for just 50 yards on 25 carries Sunday, exactly 2.0 yards per attempt.

Packers defensive lineman T.J. Slaton was a big reason why, getting credited with a career-best nine total tackles, more than double his previous high (four).

Here's a rundown of the 6-foot-4, 330-pounder's work up front, whether the play counted toward his statistics or not.

Play No. 1: Second-and-3 from the Green Bay 47, first quarter, 10:44 left

Result: 2-yard run by Mattison

This is not one of Slaton's tackles, but he makes the play as much as anybody, whipping past RG Ed Ingram (67) with a quick swim move and taking on the block of WR K.J. Osborn (17) in the backfield. That forces Mattison to bounce outside, where LB Kingsley Enagbare (55) and CB Jaire Alexander (23) catch him short of the first down.

Play No. 2: First-and-10 from the Green Bay 33, first quarter, 8:35 left

Result: No gain for Mattison

Three plays later, Slaton simply refuses to be moved by C Garrett Bradbury (56), holding his ground so that when Mattison tries to spin away from LB Rashan Gary (52), he runs right into LB De'Vondre Campbell (59) on the other side of Slaton, who gets in on the takedown as well.

Play No. 3: Second-and-10 from the Minnesota 25, second quarter, 7:44 left

Result: 2-yard run by Akers

This play shows Slaton first holding his ground against Ingram, which forces Akers to scoot outside. But then Slaton also chases him down, showing his big-man mobility.

Play No. 4: First-and-10 from the Green Bay 42, third quarter, 13:51 left

Result: 1-yard run by Mattison

Again, Slaton displays a sheer refusal to be moved against what starts as a double-team by LG Dalton Risner (66) and LT Christian Darrisaw (71). Then he fights his way off Darrisaw to help Campbell make the stop.

Play No. 5: Second-and-2 from the Green Bay 13, third quarter, 12:05 left

Result: 1-yard loss by Mattison

Another double-team on Slaton, this time by Bradbury and Ingram, but it doesn't deter him. CB Keisean Nixon (25) is the first one in the backfield to make contact with Mattison, and then Slaton and Enagbare get there to finish up.

Play No. 6: First-and-10 from the Minnesota 29, third quarter, 1:07 left

Result: 7-yard loss by Mattison

A different alignment but an even bigger play by Slaton, as he's lined up on RT Brian O'Neill (75) and shoves him several yards into the backfield, almost into the ball carrier himself. Mattison eventually eludes Slaton's grasp and is brought down by Gary, but it's clear who made the play.

Play No. 7: First-and-10 from the Minnesota 10, fourth quarter, 7:15 left

Result: 2-yard loss by Akers

Pretty simple here. Slaton stands up Ingram and has strong leverage right to the ball carrier for another TFL.

Play No. 8: First-and-10 from the Minnesota 24, fourth quarter, 4:28 left

Result: No gain by Mattison

Nothing fancy. Beat man (Risner). Find ball. Pretty good day's work.