Running the Table:
The Packers are coming off of a big win on Sunday, and now have their sights set on the Cleveland Browns. For this week’s game, the motto in the Packers locker room remains the same, “survive and advance”. The Packers go into this weekends matchup playing their best football of the season. Last week, the defense consistently applied pressure to Jameis Winston, and the rushing attack provided all the Packers needed to triumph over the Bucs in a hard-fought overtime victory.
The Brett Hundley Factor:
The key to another Packer win this weekend in Cleveland, will rest on the shoulders of back up quarterback Brett Hundley. Hundley needs to show that he can throw for more than 84 yards in the air. Last week, the run game was able to make up for Hundley’s poor performance, however, if the Packers hope to continue their winning ways, the offense will need to be firing on all cylinders. The Packers must be able to provide a more balanced offensive attack by showing the ability to pass the ball down the field when the opportunity presents itself for shot plays.
The Packers Defensive Keys to Victory: (Shutting Down The Browns)
We saw the importance of a consistent pass rush last week by the number of sacks, hurries, Quarterback hits, and turnovers. The defense was able to limit big plays down the field from Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson by hurrying Jameis Winston and consistently collapsing his pocket. The defense must continue this trend and apply consistent pressure to DeShone Kizer and collapse his pocket. If the defense can ratchet up the pressure on Kizer, look for him to have a long afternoon. Another key to a Packers victory will be containing the running game and stopping the short yardage passing game.
Browns to Look Out For:
1. Isaiah Crowell
2. DeShone Kizer
3. Duke Johnson
4. David Njoku
Packers Offensive Keys to Victory:
The Packers know that they will be in for a battle. The Browns are a winless and desperate football team who just fired their president of football operations. They will be looking for a moment in their season and see a vulnerable Packers team with a quarterback who was unable to throw for 100 yards the previous week. It is crucial that the Packers establish the run early with Jamaal Williams, Aaron Jones, and Brett Hundley in the read option game. If the running game is successful and Hundley can get into a flow, it will be important to take a few early shots down the field to keep the Browns defense honest.
The Packers are in playoff mode, their season is on the line, and the tone of their football team has changed. Look for the Packers to continue to play inspired football. I believe we will see a 21-10 Packers win.
Key Packer Performers:
1. The Packers offensive line
2. The Packers front seven
3. Jamaal Williams and Aaron Jones
4. Brett Hundley
David Michalski is a recent college graduate from Princeton New Jersey who has been a life long Green Bay Packers fan. Like the great Vince Lombardi, he values God, family, and the Green Bay Packers in that order. You can follow him on twitter at @kilbas27dave