As the Green Bay Packers (7-2) host the Seattle Seahawks (3-5) on Sunday afternoon, here are 5 Things to Watch from Lambeau Field.
Matchup: Seahawks at Packers
Date and Time: Sunday, November 14th, 3:25pm CST
Weather Forecast: 36 Degrees, Cloudy, 10-15mph wind
Announcers: Jim Nantz and Tony Romo
TV Map: Red – Seahawks/Packers, Blue – Eagles/Broncos
1) Russell Wilson Returns
The Seattle Seahawks QB returns to action tomorrow against the Packers. Wilson, who turns 33 at the end of November, has a 0-4 career record at Lambeau Field, including playoffs. His latest trip was in January of 2020, in the NFC Divisional Playoffs, where the Seahawks furious comeback came up just short in a 28-23 defeat.
Wilson injured the middle finger on his throwing hand during the Seahawks October 7th game against the Rams. The Seahawks went on to lose that game and lost their next two games, against the Steelers and Saints in primetime, before getting a win against the Jacksonville Jaguars two weeks ago.
In the four games the Seahawks played where Russell Wilson was healthy, they went 2-2, with wins against the Colts and 49ers and losses against the Titans and Vikings. Currently, the Seahawks are coming off a bye week. They not only return Russell Wilson but also have a shot to get their starting RB back, Chris Carson.
2) Aaron Rodgers Returns
Yes, the Packers starting QB is projected to start tomorrow against Seattle after missing last week’s game due to a positive Covid-19 test. Rodgers needs to be symptom free and be cleared by an independent doctor in order to return to the field on Sunday.
Rodgers has been participating in virtual meetings throughout the week, as he’s had to quarantine since last Wednesday. With no time to practice or interact with teammates face to face, it’ll be interesting to see his level of play come game time. Also, will there be more boo’s than usual as he runs out of the Lambeau Field tunnel during pre-game introductions?
3) Special Teams
Packers Special Teams being terrible is nothing new but they seem to have reached a new level of awful. Since the conclusion of Week 4, Mason Crosby is 7/13 on Field Goals, which is atrocious. Whether the Packers kicking game woes fall on Crosby, the long-snapper, the holder or the protection is fairly up for debate. Yet, the bottom line is that the Packers have roughly the odds of a coin-flip when attempting a kick. That’s a far cry from 2020, when Crosby and the Field Goal Unit went 16/16.
Additionally, can Green Bay clean up it’s kick and punt return issues? Amari Rodgers fumbled one punt return and was the cause of another massive miscue in last weekend’s game. Malik Taylor did not look like the answer in the kick-return department. Here’s to hoping that tomorrow is a game where the Special Teams are improved, significantly.
4) Seahawks Run Defense vs Packers O-Line
In the Seahawks last 3 games, they’ve played pretty well against the run. They held Steelers RB Najee Harris to 3.4 yards per carry. They held Alvin Kamara to 2.55 yards per carry (20 rushes, 51 yards) and in their last game, held the Jaguars to 82 yards total as a team. As Seahawks Wire points out, the Seattle interior very well may be the strongest part of their defense.
Green Bay has done a great job of running the football, when they focus on it. A few times this season, coach LaFleur has strayed away from the run game, even when effective. The Packers ground attack appears to be the strongest it’s been in 2021, so I expect a very steady dose of both Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon. If the Seahawks can limit the damage, it’ll put the Packers in some interesting 3rd and distance spots.
5) Packers short-handed defense vs Seattle
The Packers have been short-handed on defense for most of the season, without their All-Pro’s Za’Darius Smith and Jaire Alexander. Heading into tomorrow’s game, star defensive lineman Kenny Clark and rookie CB Eric Stokes are both questionable to play.
The Seahawks will test Green Bay’s corners, even if Stokes is active. DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett will be great challenges for the Packers secondary. However, the 2021 defense has played their tails off and then-some for most of the year. I certainly don’t expect this team to back down to anyone. It might be another week of next man-up, which has been a lot of fun to watch so far.——————
Alex grew up in a family of Chicago Bears fans in the suburbs of Chicago but was always a Packers guy. Alex\'s AIM name when he was in elementary/middle school was PackerAlex. He now lives in Nashville, Tennessee and you can follow him on twitter at @Alex_Mayer93.