For only the second time in Aaron Rodgers’ career, the Packers are the number seed in the NFC following the 2020 season. With a much needed bye week this past week, the Packers are gearing up to host the Los Angeles Rams at Lambeau Field this Saturday. The NFL odds at Sports Betting Dime are in favor of the Packers. They’re currently -6.5 favorites.
Adding to the excitement of this Saturday’s matchup, in a change from the regular season, the team sold 6,500 tickets to the game; so that should provide some motivation and much-needed support for the Pack. It also helps them utilize home field advantage even further.
Be sure to check out Rob’s preview of the game in which he presents the case that the Rams are battered and bruised going into this matchup with the Packers on their home home-turf(read: home-grass).
It goes without saying that the Los Angeles Rams are not well acclimated to Green Bay’s January weather. Early weather reports are calling for snow showers and 16mph wind speeds.
Green Bay made a roster move this week — adding T Jared Veldheer from the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad. Packer G Simon Stepaniak was added to injured reserve to make room. Veldheer briefly played with the Packers last season for a couple regular season games and a couple post season games, including the 2019 NFC Divisional Playoff against the Seattle Seahawks. He even started last week for the Colts in their Wild Card matchup loss against the Buffalo Bills. Once all is said and done, he will have played for two different teams in the same playoffs. A true journeyman.
The game is scheduled for a 3:35 CT kickoff and will be televised on Fox.
Veldheer placed on Covid-19 list . . . Hmmm.
I do believe that the Packers can win if they lower the Rams time of possession by containing their running game and making whichever QB that is playing become their main focus on offense.
Aaron Donald IS the wildcard. Will he be able to disrupt with a painful rib injury? This will be a very interesting game for Green Bay because they have NOT performed well against stout defensive lines.
Or….by running the ball themselves successfully. If they don’t have great luck with Jones and Williams, it would be a sin not to give Dillon some carries.
The Packers looked like they dodged a bullet (wink) having no players out because of close contact with Veldheer.
Now it’s just a matter of keeping fingers crossed they have no additional positive test.
Because of the fact i don’t feel like the Rams 20th ranked offense scares anyone (even if Goff had a healthy hand), the only way i see the Packers lose is if their O line gets steam rolled.
Run Jones wide against the rams and slam Williams and Dillon up the middle. Sore ribs on top of frigid air may lead to out of breath conditions for the rams pass rusher — maybe go to hurry up to see if Donald can handle it.
I think you could run any of the three wide or off tackle. Running wide can also make defensive linemen (rib injuries) breath harder. I know Ramsey is a very good coverage corner, but I would suggest runs to Ramsey’s side of the field. To me Ramsey is not big on tackling or taking on blocks. In fact Ramsey appears to avoid such unless forced. It is almost like you gain a one player blocking advantage when you run at Ramsey.
I really do want to see Ramsey go against Adams. Ramsey may change sides of the field with Adams, but if Adams goes in motion Ramsey may not follow. It is very seldom if ever that Ramsey follows a receiver in motion. I think one of Ramsey’s small weaknesses besides not wanting to be involved in tackling and taking on blocks is his change of direction ability. I think Adams can use his change of direction skills against Ramsey. It is a mistake to let Ramsey use the sideline to his advantage make Ramsey have to stay with Adams quick cutting ability with the choice to go right or left. Add in a potential slick field/ cold weather and Adams quick cuts could be used well against Ramsey.
Usually when the Packers run wide against a fast defense, the corners, a safety and/or LB’s come up to snuff it, but we’ll see what happens.
The template to beating the Packers was the Bucs game…everyone struggled.
Not one player on the Packers had a normal productive game.
Rodgers – 160 yards-0TD’s- 2 picks
Adams – 61 yards
MVS- 32 yards
Tonyan – 25 yards
Williams – 34 yards
Dillon – 31 yards
Jones 15 yards
It didn’t help that the defense didn’t record a sack. Brady’s offense wasn’t dominating, but they were highly efficient.
Anyway….the outcome was rooted, from the pass rush steamrolling the O line, and that was with Bakhtiari.
BUT…i don’t think all matchups are equal, and i have no faith in the Rams ho-hum boring offense, especially at Lambeau. It’s time for the defense to say something….on the field.
If we lose it’s because the Rams defense rolls the Packer offense and the Rams defense scores or is responsible for scoring with turnovers.
I would agree about not running wide against a fast defense with fast inside linebackers. The Rams do not have the same speed/instincts at linebacker as Tampa bay. I don’t even think it is close. Plus the Packers I think learned a lesson against TB. When running to the outside don’t try to have your interior offensive linemen try to reach block fast, instinctive ILBs. The interior lineman just can’t beat those type of ILBs to the spot.
I’ve barely watched the Rams. i’ve already deleted that Rams game on my dvr. Since 2013 the Packers have played them twice.
So not being a Rams expert, i have to wing it by their No 1 ranked scoring defense and their 3rd ranked run defense and their #1 ranked passing defense. They’re doing something right.
Will Jones run better against the Rams than he did against the Bucs? Well..he ran 10 times for 15 yards against the Bucs for a 1.5 average, so yea, i’d put my money on that.
Hold their own on offense. If the defense is real and improving like everyone says, than playing in the cold, at Lambeau on a travel week for the Rams, then that table is set for the defense to show us something against the weakest part of the Rams team. It’s 23rd ranked scoring offense.
But…don’t forget…the Rams defense is a night and day difference…home vs away.
This game shouldn’t be a problem for the Packers, as long as they can negate the pass rush and not lose the turnover battle.
Who knows…maybe the defense can be the hero’s, wouldn’t that be a switch.
I agree Howard! The only way to run against a defense with lateral speed, is to run up the gut, and to attack the middle of the field in the passing game, and if that is successful; it might open the sidelines up downfield.
Scratching head cheap entertainment……..
Our boy Damon “too many Snacks” Harrison is married with 7 children.
“It’s seven of them….ages: 12, 10, 6, 3, 1-year-old twins—and a 5-month-old,” Harrison said last month.
Have you begun scratching your head yet?
This game might be the time to feature Dillon, especially in the 2nd half when temps start falling and the Rams D getting tired. I have a feeling that drafting Dillon in the 1st place, was for moments like this. If they can successfully use Jones and Williams early to spread out the Rams D, and then later pound the rock with Dillon, that would be great. The elephant in the room, is whether the O line can effectively block the D front of the Rams.
I have a feeling Dillon was drafted because Jones isn’t coming back. But i agree…if they struggle running, give him some carries, But if the game starts going south….go down swinging.
In the next 1-3 games, there will be players who might not longer be wearing the green and gold anymore. Linsley…King…Jones…Taylor,etc. Plus, Tonyan is gonna want to get paid this off season, and you know….Jaire is gonna want his, sooner than later. He’s going to break the bank people.
As it sits, the Packers are about 24 million above the cap for next season.
One guy i’ll be watching (just to appreciate watching him) is Drew Bree’s, as i’m fully convinced 100%, he’s done after this post season.
We are very lucky…we had an opportunity to watch so many great HOF QB’s in this era. Not just HOF….but regarded as the games best….ever.
Drew’s, Brady, Manning, Rodgers….WOW
Another note; McVey has stated he is planning on devising a game plan to keep Rodgers and Co. on the sideline to win this game. This is a no-brainer, and LaFleur knows it.
Also, I just read on Packers Wire that the Rams STs’ are even worse than GBs’! (of course, Crosbys’ 100% field goal stats probably was the difference.)
Part of the reason that worked, is because the Seahawks only converted 2 of 14 3rd down conversions and punted 8 times. Where the Rams had the ball for over a 7 minute advantage in TOP.
As bad as the Bucs beat the Packers, the Packers still converted 7-17 and had a 3 minute plus TOP advantage.
I get it…different teams, different match ups. But what worked with Seattle may not work against Green Bay.
The only way Rodgers couldn’t do better than 2 of 14 on 3rd down conversions, is if he was in a wheelchair. And even then he’d probably do better.
Sounds like McVey has a plan though.
In the words of Mike Daniels..”Everybody has a plan, till they get punched in the mouth”.
Speaking of Daniels and (cough) Nick Perry. Who i couldn’t stop talking about how much Russ Ball overpaid them.
Isn’t it amazing how very high priced talent fall off the cliff after being released from the Packers?
Both Daniels and Perry were released in the 2019 off season.
Perry couldn’t find a job. But since he averaged over 10 mill his last 3 years in Green Bay, might still have some left.
Daniels found two jobs the last 2 seasons with Detroit and the Bengals.
Detroit didn’t learn from the Packers and gave him 8 million…for that…Daniels gave Detroit 6 solo tackles and 1 sack.
The always hard up Bengals then signed him to one year..1,5 million…For that, Daniels gave the Bengals 7 solo tackles and a long line of zero’s.
So then in the mean time, what happens to Russ Ball, terminated? demoted? Job Title reassignment?…..Nah…lets give Russ Ball a promotion, more money, and put him 2nd in charge, HE’S EARNED IT.
Isn’t it amazing other team owners aren’t begging for Russ Ball to run their organization? Perplexing…i know.
These are the lives of our Green Bay Packers front office.
Good articles! Thanks for sharing. Goff was just named the starting Q-back for the game. The Seahawks just fired their O-coordinator; the Lions just hired the Rams personnel guy as GM. Not that I GAS, but, it’s NFL news non-the-less.
I think it was after the 2016 season, McCarthy mentioned on his coaching show; that he was perplexed as to why non of his assistants / coordinators were being considered for head coaching jobs. Well, I wonder if any of them are around anymore!!!!
I think imo…some of McCarthy’s peers resented his attitude and demeanor and how he carried himself as head coach of the Packers.
Holmgren always seemed to carry himself better. and i’ll tell you what, Holmgren had everything to do with building Favre out of a chunk of clay, than McCarthy ever had in building Rodgers.
I wouldn’t be shocked if McCarthy learned more from Rodgers than vice-versa.
Yup, and let’s not forget how stubborn McCarthy was when it came to not making adjustments to his scripted plays when things would break down. Also, I think McCarthys’ arrogant attitude rubbed a lot of people the wrong way; ie when pressured by the media, statements like “Listen, I’m a highly successful head coach”. He never would have lasted as long as he did in GB without Favre and Rodgers.
With that Bionic Thumb, Jared Goff will lead the Rams®™ to battle against the mighty foe. Does anybody ever proof read what this guy writes? The Packers are the Number Seed ? Are there letter seeds as well ? The Packers got a much needed bye week ? They certainly didn’t look Crippled leaving the field after playing the Bears, did they ? More harm than good has followed the Packers coming off of bye weeks in recent years. They were 13-3 last year in a new system, under a new coach, with so many new faces. At the beginning of this season, alot of the commentary was about putting Gutekunst and LaFleur out the door for moving up and taking a QB, as opposed to a wide receiver with the # 1 pick. It sure doesn’t look to me, like they didn’t know what they were doing. 🤔
Here’s some interesting stats to digest! In this 2020 season, when Rodgers targets Tonyan, he is 52 of 59, for 586 yards, 11 touchdowns, 0 interceptions, and a passer rating of 147.6! Who would have thought? Also, what a good blocker he has become. LaFleur might be wise to use him, especially if the Rams smother Adams and disrupt the running game.
I initially had big doubts about this game. The Rams defense is exactly the type of defense that has stopped the Packers in the playoffs in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2019. The Rams beat the the top ten offense of the Seahawks with basically no offense at all. Ramsey will eliminate Adams and if Rodgers gets impatient, he will play right into the Rams defense. I have a little bit of hope though now because Goff is bad in cold weather. The Packers will lose if Goff has a QB rating higher than 90. But I think it will be a very close game and will depend on Goff tossing a couple to the Packers, otherwise it will look like every other playoff game against a top defense.
Oh, ye of little faith…
It’s a new year. There is literally like not more than 2 players on this team from 2011, and no coaches. Not many more from 12-14. Perhaps this year’s team is better than last year? perhaps this year’s team learned something last year. And, oh yes, the 2020 Rams are not the big bad wolf that the 2019 49ers were. Rest easy. The Rams and their fans are the ones who should have the big doubts.
That’s a pretty good call. I don’t know if rest easy is the correct mantra, and i don’t care much how many players are left over from 2011, but Kzoo is right, last years 49ers team was double trouble.
Not only were they ranked the #2 defense. somewhat similar to the Rams, while only giving up 19.4 PTS/G
Here’s the difference…the 49ers offense was ranked 4th, and scoring 29.9 PTS/G…DOUBLE TROUBLE
The Rams offense could only dream of being that potent, with a healthy Goff.
With that said…a dominate defense can still win a game.
So…can the Rams defense beat the Packers? Yes
BUT….if the Packers defense can at least “show up” against the 20th ranked Rams offense. I see a victory for Green Bay.
The Rams are a one sided football team, Much the same way the Packers have been in years past, and the Saints for that matter.
The toughest part…..is proving it. I say at Lambeau, in the cold, maybe some snow…they prove it.
Random….Although home field and a bye week is a great advantage. My only concern is because the offense was humming, is that sometimes a break in routine throws the offense off a bit.
Meaning…i wouldn’t be surprised if the offense initially comes out a little off.
As per PF4L policy: No charge.
A lot of you probably saw this but pretty cool article written by “Bobby” Tonyan. Ask him about Rodgers leadership and see what he says.
Thanks for sharing Ferris. Very good stuff.
Nice Ferris….Yea it is Howard
If Nick Perry can get a winning lottery ticket for 11 sacks.
Then “Bobby” can get one for 11TD’s.
We’ve heard all the negative, from 2 ex Packers, to some so called fans in here.
Rodgers plays favorites,
Rodgers wants to ruin players careers.
Rodgers isn’t coachable.
Rodgers can’t get along with his head coach, he’s a coach killer.
How will Rodgers get along with a new coach.
Rodgers yells at players, i saw him…shame on him, what a loser.
Rodgers has problems with McCarthy.
Rodgers doesn’t care about his teammates
Rodgers should be benched.
Rodgers has lost it.
Rodgers will never be the same as he was.
I’M GETTING OFF THE RODGERS BANDWAGON…..
Good…then stay off!!
Rodgers has problems with McCarthy…lol. Well fuck….who among us haven’t had problems with McCarthy?
If Rodgers didn’t have problems with McCarthy, that’s the day i start to worry about Rodgers desire for excellence.
Rodgers is a coach killer…lol.
Gee…a guy who had the same coach for 13 years, is a coach killer?….lol.
Was Rodgers put off by the Packers drafting Love? Yes.. like all of us, here at home…and across the Nation.
Then Rodgers soon explained his true emotion about how he was initially “put off” after the pick. Give him credit.
Since then…..could Rodgers have been any more professional regarding Love since then? I say absolutely not
During all that….going back through the years of fan negativity. What i’ve been saying since, in defense of Rodgers has served me well.
“I ride with Aaron Rodgers until the very, very end.”
Thanks for sharing the article, Ferris! In todays social media society, I can understand why a lot of players would be reluctant to share their inner feelings to the world. Tonyans’ remarks and praises seem to be genuine, he truly appreciates his teammates, his sport, the town, the tradition of the Packers, and the opportunity he has been given. This team really cares and roots for one another, which is the true definition of a TEAM!