Packers XLV

Pack's Return to Lambeau Should Be Festive.

Posted December 6th, 2019 @ 04:12pm

Let's just get this one out of the way, shall we? Beginning on Monday, we'll be thinking about the final three games of the season, all division games, knowing that if they beat the Bears and Lions, they'll be no worse than a three seed in the NFC playoffs.

But of course the Pack first must dispatch the Redskins, a team with a historically inept offense, but one that has inexplicably won its last two games, to drop to third in next spring's draft order. OK, their two wins aren't that inexplicable. They've beaten the Jeff Driskal-led Lions and Kyle Allen-led Panthers, compiling 13 sacks and six takeaways in the process. And last week, their two-headed rushing attack of Adrian Peterson and Derrius Guice shredded Carolina.

Now they come to Lambeau, for the Pack's first home game since November 10th, as nearly two touchdown underdogs. After firing head coach Jay Gruden earlier in the season, Washington has tried to embody the personality of interim coach Bill Callahan, with a ground and pound approach and relying as little as possible on rookie QB Dwayne Haskins, who in a perfect world, would have used 2019 as a redshirt season.

Haskins has the tools to be a good quarterback, but he has a lot to learn and improve on. He's completing just 54% of his passes, with two touchdowns and six interceptions. He also takes sacks at an incredible rate--on 14% of his pass plays. He does have one legit weapon in the passing game, former Buckeye teammate Terry McLaurin, who's scored five times and averages 15 yards per reception on 46 catches. Expect him to draw Jaire Alexander's constant attention on Sunday.

Washington will undoubtedly attack the Pack's offense the same way the Giants did. It's an altered universe now, as teams look to stop Aaron Jones and the Packers' running game and make Aaron Rodgers beat them. #12 was up to the challenge against the Giants in a snowstorm and the same will be the case on Sunday. With Allen Lazard stepping comfortably into the #2 receiving role, Rodgers is feeling more comfortable in this offense and will continue to feed him and Adams, while using Jones and Jamaal Williams in the receiving game as well.

Green Bay needs to get back to running the football, because that will be the recipe to win the North and make some noise in January. In the Pack's three losses Jones has not reached 40 yards rushing, and he didn't get there last week either. Jones and Williams should both get 20 touches in a game the Pack figures to be playing with the lead.

Aaron Rodgers understands how important it is for the Pack to jump out early and make Washington play from behind, where they need to rely on Haskins' arm. He implored the fans to be loud and crazy early--maybe he figures they've forgotten how to cheer since it's been so long since they've been to a game. He should have probably saved the pleas for next week when the suddenly competent Bears come to town.

The most interesting new dynamic in this game is watching the new returner make his debut. With the Pack jettisoning Tramon Smith and replacing him with Tyler Ervin, they hope they solved their historically dismal return game. Ervin has experience, two years with the Texans and another with the Jags, with nearly 100 punt and kick returns in his resume. He'll try to reverse the Packers' abysmal punt return production, where they have a grand total of -8 yards on nine returns this season. No, that's not a typo. At this point, just hanging on to the ball and not going backwards is all we should ask for.

This two week diversion through the bunny patch can't end soon enough. The Giants and Redskins will tell us nothing about this team. They've been extremely fortunate in the injury department this season, so let's just hope that trend continues and they get set for the final three games with a healthy roster.

Packers 24   Washington 10

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Comments (11):

It's funny that with all that THC said that he only has the Packers scoring 24 points. That feels odd to me. I can hardly imagine the crowd being in to this game with that score. The Pack should put up 30. They should do it by dominating in all four phases. The Offense needs to be both explosive and balanced. The Defense needs to get off the field on third and long, and cause turn overs. Special teams needs to be competent. I would not expect to see the new returner get many offensive carries. Besides not knowing the system, that is not what he was brought in for. You might see Dexter Williams or Vitale get some more carries. Or they may add in a couple extra jet sweeps to spread the load around a bit. I had like their DE Sweat in the draft and it will be interesting to see if he shows up. I hope I can find the time to watch this Nooner. I going to say 31 / 13 Packers. I don't feel like that is cocky, it is just what should be expected if you are a playoff caliber team.

on December 6th, 2019 at 01:34pm

I’m interested in the coaching staff down the stretch run,finding the mismatches and making the adjustments allows the star’s to shine,we’ll see how lafleur and Pettine handle it and special teams and clock management,hopefully the stage isn’t to big for them. Go Pack Go!!!

on December 6th, 2019 at 02:07pm

Jamaal Williams was listed on the injury report Thursday. It's never a good sign when a player is listed mid-week on the injury report. So, in steps #32 Tyler Ervin - a running back who has 100 returns under his belt. While we are looking forward to the new punt and kick returner, we also might just need him to give Aaron Jones a break. So, if you need a sleeper pick for the Packers, this just might be your guy.

on December 6th, 2019 at 11:25am

OSSG. I wondered that too. and I heard 12 and some media guys, actually say. the play calls are so damn long to get out, that 12 does not have time , unless he just calls the plays and I don't think Lafluer wants that . Christ he has been calling a lot of plays over the years, and he needs a play call list on his wrist, stupid, shorten them up somehow. Pisses me off too.

on December 7th, 2019 at 01:38pm

Now wait a minute......the schedule says the game is in Green Bay. That's 10 calls against Washington, 5 of the phantom, and yet only 24 points. What the hell gives?

on December 7th, 2019 at 06:01pm

Except for the win there was a lot not to like about last week's game and I suspect we'll be saying similar about this one. The Racial Slurs can do two things that have given the Packers trouble all year: run the ball and rush the qb. So I'll be looking to see if GB has anything fixed with the run defense and o-line to handle those issues. Aaron Rodgers said this week the identity of this team is "do whatever it takes" to win the game and against this opponent at home they should somehow get it done. Like last week it will probably be closer longer than we'd like but the Pack prevails somehow 27-17.

on December 7th, 2019 at 06:49am

5 of the phantom,huh Greg,should have mommy check your spelling,keep up the whining idiot!! Where’s the Minnesota nice and all the rich Vikings history?

on December 7th, 2019 at 06:53pm

Greg usually clings to the twins championships although it’s not football,don’t know if he realizes that,oh well,better than nothing I guess!!

on December 7th, 2019 at 07:25pm

Ha idiot Greg is back,you just don’t learn,I’m glad though, I collected a lot of paychecks for choking,like I’ve said,Minnesota is a real stupid fan base and Greg you are the leader!!

on December 7th, 2019 at 07:36pm

This game scares me some. Confidence is big in any sport you play, Right now Washington has some. I don't worry as much on Peterson as I do Guice, he is the kind of back that has killed all year. I'm thinking of picking him up in fantasy playoffs, not kidding. But I cant do it and cheer against the Pack. Same old thing I say each week. If we get plus 2 in turnovers or more we win easy, if not, very close game, Lets get the turnovers, we win 30 to 10 and LDF gets his thirty. lol. he is right though, we should score at least 30 if we run the ball. vikes win 34- 24, Go Packers.

on December 7th, 2019 at 12:04pm

I am confused why the Pack has not run the no huddle hurry up offense since about the 3rd game of year. The only time we see it is if Rodgers sees 12 men on the field and does the quick pass. We are succesfull with it and maybe LaFluer is keeping it in his back list to use when needed. We must get AJones 20 -25 touches a game to keep the defense honest. Our 9-3 record can be deceiving when we rank in the bottom 1/3rd of the league in offense and defense. I feel like we have not come close to our best performances yet....this last 1/4th of the season needs us peaking while some of the frontrunners may have already played their best. Rodgers turned 36 on Dec.2.....his time is now. GO PACK GO !!

on December 7th, 2019 at 12:56pm

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