Now, the Packers are preparing for a completely different opponent this Sunday night in the Chicago Bears, who outfoxed San Francisco for a 19-10 upset victory in monsoon-like conditions at Soldier Field last weekend.
Former first-round pick Justin Fields completed only eight passes against the 49ers but two of them went for touchdowns, including an 18-yard pass to former Green Bay receiver Equanimeous St. Brown for the go-ahead score.
Where Cousins relies on play-action throws from the pocket, Fields often scrambles to extend plays. Fields had success with the approach as a rookie, developing synergy with 1,000-yard receiver Darnell Mooney, tight end Cole Kmet and dual-threat running back David Montgomery.
“You just want to keep him contained,” said linebacker Preston Smith of Fields. “He’s a guy who can make a lot of big plays with his feet. We know if we give him any running lanes, he’ll take off and he can do some damage to an opposing defense.”
The Packers had one sack of Cousins last Sunday, which came off a new look where their top two edge rushers, Smith and Rashan Gary, rushed together off the left side, while Clark played a wide technique on the opposite end.
On Sunday, the Packers’ pass rush will look to copy the blueprint from last year when it dropped Fields six times in Green Bay’s two wins. Fields ran for 117 yards on 15 carries, but completed just 34-of-60 passes (56.7%) for 398 yards with three TDs and three interceptions (72.8 passer rating).
The Packers know this won’t be the same Bears offense, though. The unit is now coordinated by longtime Packers assistant coach Luke Getsy, who also serves as the Bears’ primary play-caller.
Working in the Packers’ favor is the fact promising rookie linebacker Quay Walker and dime cornerback Keisean Nixon both practiced this week after leaving Sunday’s game with shoulder injuries.
After a disappointing start in Minnesota, the Packers’ defense is motivated to prove it’s still the same disruptive unit everyone believed it to be heading into the season.
“Every week is a new week,” Clark said. “The Bears are coming off a really big win and we’re coming off a tough loss, a division loss. We definitely have to get this one. It’s the league. This is what it’s all about, division games. The next one is the biggest one and we definitely have to be prepared for a team that’s riding high off a win.”