Hey, predictions are back?! Where the hell did they go? I don’t even fucking know! We’ve just been so goddam busy, we forgot to predict the stupid game so far.
No more! So, here you go, starting with the Green Bay Packers vs. the Cincinnati Bengals.
Shawn: Remember that season schedule that looked so difficult on paper? Take a look at it now.
The Packers play the AFC North and the NFC East this season. In Week 1, the AFC North stumbled to an 0-4 start. In Week 2, the NFC East duplicated the feat.
In the AFC North, the Steelers are 0-2 and ready to have street tryouts; the Ravens are 1-1, showing the typical uninspired play of a team that is no longer hungry; the Bengals are banged up in the secondary and have already lost to the Bears; and the Browns are the Browns.
In the NFC East, the Cowboys look as lost as ever; the Giants are 0-2, the Eagles just lost consecutive home games to teams from the AFC West, and we already know all about the Redskins.
In other words, it might be conservative to say the Packers should be 3-1 against both of these divisions. And all these road games that were supposed to be so difficult, the Packers will likely be favored in all of them just like they are this week against Cincy.
In short, one could make a strong argument that the two toughest games on the schedule both happen before the bye. As such, even if the Packers were to lose against the Bengals this weekend, 1-2 will hardly be the picture of doom when you consider that they would have already played their two toughest road games of the season.
However, the Packers are favored for a reason. They are the better team, and I believe they’ll have to play far below their capability, or Cincy play above theirs, for the Packers to lose this game.
We have all heard ad nauseum by now that the Bengals have one of the best front sevens in football. Good for them. The problem is the Packers bring the best passing attack in the league, and I don’t expect them to spend a lot of time banging their heads against that front seven, other than to keep the defense honest.
Poor match ups in the secondary abound for the Bengals, and the only way I see them holding up there is if the pass rush is good for at least five-plus sacks.
Yes, the Packers defense has some match up issues of their own. I am not as concerned with A.J. Green as most, considering the Packers have the corners capable of limiting him. Anquan Boldin did most his damage from the slot, and Green is not likely to line up there. No, the biggest concern for the Packers is probably the tight end tandem who will likely be covered by a safety or a linebacker or zone coverage, none of which have my supreme confidence.
However, when it comes to taking advantage of favorable match ups, I’ll take Aaron Rodgers over Andy Dalton, which is obviously where the main difference between these two teams lies.
“Prediction?… PAIN” — Clubber Lang
Packers 31, Bengals 24
Monty: Yeah, seriously, the more I think about this game, the more I feel like the Packers are going to walk out of Cincinnati with a victory.
Their secondary might suck a big, fat, hairy ball sack right now, but the Buttholes’ secondary sure as shit isn’t going to cover the holy triumphant of Jordy Nelson, James Jones and Randall Cobb. Whatever guy is No. 3 there is going to torch his Buttholes’ counterpart. Whatever guy is No. 2 is going to do the same.
Ultimately, the Packers have Aaron Rodgers and unless he morphs into Brett Favre and forces the ball into coverage 17 times and that turns into four picks, then the Packers got this.
Cincinnati is good this year, but they’re AFC good. And fuck the AFC. They’re the NFL’s fucking junior varsity.
Packers 34, Bengals 17