The 2017 Green Bay Packers did not live up to their billing. I don’t think any of us could question that. In order for the Packers to return to their rightful place on top of the NFC North and in contention for the NFC crown, they must re-establish Lambeau Field dominance. During the 90’s, Coach Holmgren and those Packers made Lambeau Field a huge advantage and a place every visiting team feared. This is no longer the case. These Packers went 4-4 at home this year and that is clearly unacceptable. Winning on the road is very difficult in this league so it is imperative that the dominant teams do just that in their backyard.
In addition to the regular division opponents (Bears, Lions and Vikings), the Packers will host Arizona, Atlanta, Buffalo, Miami and San Francisco. The combined record of these teams from 2017 is a pedestrian 39-41. No, you can not predict the strength of the schedule a year in advance as the Vikings climbed to 13-3 this year, however, it is safe to say that the Packers have a favorable home schedule and, if all things fall into place, should be able to post a much better home record. If the Packers go either 8-0 or 7-1 at home in 2018, you can be assured that Aaron Rodgers recent guarantee that the Packers will be playing in the playoffs and that 2017 was an aberration was an accurate one.
When the Packers are at their best, Lambeau Field is a tough venue to come in and leave victorious. The Packers used to lean heavily on the solid ground game and stout defense when the weather turned. This used to be known as “Packer Football.” McCarthy would do well if he established a physicality not seen in several years and he has some of the right players to lead this charge. Look for Mike Daniels, Josh Jones and Kenny Clark to bring a sense of nasty to the unit that will bring a different aura to Lambeau. In order for the Packers to get back to dominant football, they have to re-establish the homefield advantage. Time will tell if they can but I am fully confident that the importance of winning home games will be a point of emphasis.Robert Martin bleeds green and gold despite living in North Dakota, where many cheer for the purple. He is currently a writer for PackersTalk.com. You can follow him on Twitter @robertmartinPHD.