Sunday, December 19, 2010

Packers vs. Patriots Preview

For those readers short on time, the quick take on tonight's game between the Green Bay Packers and the New England Patriots is this: Pats are favored by 14 points. Bottom line: not many outside of the Packers' locker room are giving the 8-5 Pack much of a chance against the 11-2 Pats. Given the level of play of QB Tom Brady and his teammates over the last few weeks, and compared to the Packers' debacle in Detroit last Sunday, seems reasonable to pick the Pats over the Pack. Especially with starting QB Aaron Rodgers on the sidelines and backup Matt Flynn getting his first NFL start.

As stated in our post of yesterday noting that Rodgers was out and Flynn was in, the possibility of the Packers beating the Patriots does exist. It's just not probable. Yes, the Packers have one of the top-ranked defenses in the league, even with the bevy of injuries that have occurred to that unit since the start of the season. It's been a remarkable run, all things considered. And, while the Pats have Tom Brady and a potent offense, their defense is so-so.

So...if the Packers could somehow generate an offense that kept Tom Brady on the bench as long as possible, maybe there's a chance. But if the Packers offense fails to do that, and if they play as pathetically as they did in Detroit, this game could be a blow out.

Still, former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Packers reporter and current Boston Globe Patriots reporter, Greg Bedard, has written a 5-point plan as to how the Packers can beat the Patriots, just as the Cleveland Browns did in their 34-14 victory over the Patriots on Nov. 7, the last time the Pats were defeated, by the way, and with Colt McCoy at quarterback for the Browns.

To summarize Bedard's 5 main points: run the ball; get an early lead; push the Patriots' pocket from the inside; press the Patriots' receivers; don't turn the ball over.

Do these things, Bedard says, and there's a chance at an upset.

As for us, even with the Green 'n' Gold-colored glasses, we see this game going in favor of the Pats, 38-13. Hope we're as wrong on this prediction as with that for last week's game.

Go Pack Go!!!