The Green Bay Packers are set up again for another mid season run like they have made for two straight seasons.
After starting off the season 1-2 last year, Green Bay went on a four game winning streak and were poised to make it five until Aaron Rodgers got injured against the Bears. In 2012, the Packers started off 2-3 before rattling off five straight wins.
The schedule is set up for the Packers to do something similar this year. They have faced the toughest part of their schedule already and survived at 2-2, which is really a fine record for the quality of opponents they were facing and where they were playing them.
The Packers’ next three opponents are Minnesota, at Miami and Carolina. Those are three teams they should beat. Obviously, you can never predict the NFL and nobody can be taken lightly, but those three teams do not stack up with the stretch the Packers just went through.
Teddy Bridgewater looked awesome for Minnesota yesterday, but it’s so tough for road teams to win on Thursdays, and it will be tougher for a rookie quarterback. Atlanta’s defense is also terrible, not that the Green Bay defense is anything to write home about of course. One thing Dom Capers has been good at with the Packers is confusing young quarterbacks.
Miami had a blowout win yesterday, but it was against Oakland. All road games are tough in the NFL, but the Packers will be favored there. Carolina has gotten blown out two weeks in a row and they just have no weapons for Cam Newton to work with. Greg Hardy being out is a huge blow to their pass rush.
Following a tough Sunday night game in New Orleans, the Packers have four of their next five games at home. The opponents aren’t easy with Chicago, Philadelphia, New England and Atlanta coming to town, but Green Bay has been a dominant home team under Aaron Rodgers and Mike McCarthy. They just do not lose at home often in the regular season.
Yesterday’s 38-17 victory over the Bears was a statement win for the Packers. They still own the Bears and will until Jay Cutler proves he can out duel Rodgers in a big spot.
They proved that they still have enough weapons on offense to be explosive and make plays down the field. Randall Cobb looked like his old self and both Davante Adams and Richard Rodgers flashed. The offensive line played so well that Rodgers did not even take a hit. This is what happens when he has adequate time to get rid of the ball.
The defense clearly still has holes particularly in the middle of the defense. However, Minnesota, Miami and Carolina are all pedestrian offenses, and the defense can usually do enough against those types of offenses for the offense to win the game for them.
Clay Matthews’ groin is definitely something to watch because it looked like it slowed him down yesterday. With Matthews slowed down the pass rush that looked so good in the first three games was nonexistent in Chicago. The pass rush and the secondary have to be the strengths of this defense for it to have any chance of being successful.
Yesterday’s victory in Chicago gives the Packers the opportunity to get their season going the way they envisioned it.——————