Thursday, November 22, 2007

Favre set to carve

Gobble gobble, Packer fans. Happy Thanksgiving to one and all. May your plate be full and your pants be expando-matic today. This is the day we give thanks for all the good things in our lives. And certainly, one of the things we are most thankful for this year is our 9-1 Packers. And what better way to rejoice in all that is America's real team than to start our holiday celebrations by watching the Packers beat the Lions?

It's a slightly early start time today, 11:30 a.m. Central time. And, of course, the Pack is coming off just a few days rest following its victory over Carolina on Sunday. But nothing should prevent the Pack from taking care of business in Detroit. Of course, they will have to stay focused and not start thinking too soon about those big turkey dinners waiting for them when they get back to Green Bay later this evening. Or looking past the Lions to the game against the Cowboys next Thursday evening.

Detroit was hot, now they've lost two in a row. They need to win to keep within striking distance of the Pack, although that's a long shot. As is the playoffs for them if they don't win today. As one of the Packers players said in a radio interview earlier this week, this will be Detroit's Super Bowl. So the Lions will be jacked up and may keep it close for a while.

Perhaps this year more than in recent memory, the Lions actually think they have a good team. But the passing game is about all they have. They've rushed for minus-18 and 25 yards in the last two games. And QB John Kitna has to rely on his not-so-great O-line to protect him while the receivers try to get down field. As a result, Kitna's been sacked a lot...a lot. Now, put that up against the Pack's D-line who have been known to get an effective pass rush going and it could be a long day for Mr. Kitna. Cue Aaron Kampman and KGB. The Pack will be missing DT Johnny Jolly, but Colin Cole and the other guys in the rotation will fill in admirably. Now, don't get me wrong, Kitna will make some throws and, if the Packers D-backs aren't on their usual game, could burn the Pack a time or two. This must be what the oddsmakers are factoring in to their 3-1/2 spread in favor of the Pack.

But those same oddsmakers must be forgetting the porous secondary the Lions will be putting on the field to go against the Pack's group of outstanding receivers. How many 4 and 5 receiver sets do you think we'll see today? Word to the Lions secondary: be very afraid.

The Pack have the running game going enough to keep the defense guessing, despite starter Ryan Grant having a bit of a gimpy ankle coming out of last week's game. Brandon Jackson and Vernand Morency might see a bit more action than in prior weeks, but the group should still be able to keep things rolling. And as for ol #4? Count on a big game today.

Take the Pack to reveal the Lions for the turkeys they really are. And pass the gravy, please.