Packers XLV

Packers Won't Need Santa to Deliver a Christmas Eve Gift

Posted December 23rd, 2016 @ 03:12am

They're like two ships passing in the night. The Packers are that vessel that's headed out to the high seas, with a crew full of vigor and optimism. The Vikings are the craft that's headed back to shore, with a worn out crew ready to get home and just sleep for a few months.

The two will meet on what looks to be a mild, possibly rainy, Christmas Eve afternoon at Lambeau on Saturday. They couldn't be in more opposite situations. The Packers, the hottest team in the NFC, are looking for their fifth straight win and find themselves--for the first time this season--in control of their own destiny.  Win the final two and they win the North. They could clinch a wildcard spot this weekend, if a bunch of things go their way.

As for the Vikings, their 5-0 start is a distant memory; they've won just twice in the last nine weeks and last Sunday's meltdown at home against the Colts suggests they're ready for the season to end. Their offense remains punchless and now their defense is getting banged up and can't seem to stop anyone anymore.

But the Pack knows the Vikings have won the last two times they've taken the field at Lambeau and will not overlook them or look past them. Mike Zimmer has always managed to make things uncomfortable for Aaron Rodgers. But he'll have his hands full this time around.

No QB has been hotter than Rodgers over the past two months and with the emergence of Ty Montgomery in the backfield, the Pack's offense is as explosive as it's been all season. Montgomery looks the part of the answer at running back for the long term. I've watched a few of his runs in Chicago several times this week. He's the real deal. For the first time in the last ten years of this series, the Packers will have the more explosive, dynamic back on the field.

Montgomery's presence should open things up for Rodgers and the passing game and make things a lot tougher for opposing defenses the rest of the year. If Xavier Rhodes is tasked with covering Jordy Nelson, there should be opportunities for redemption for Davante Adams on the other side. Hopefully Randall Cobb will return after missing last week's game--he's been practicing in a limited capacity this week. For the Vikes, their best defensive player, Harrison Smith, returned to practice as well--if he plays the defense should look a lot different than last week.

It's impossible to know what to expect from the Vikings. Usually, you hate to play a team after it's been embarrassed at home. They usually follow up with a focused, intense effort. In this case, after a long season that started with the Bridgewater injury, made its way to AP and most of the offensive line, continued with the release of Blair Walsh and culminated with the head coach's detached retina, it might just be that the team is ready to be officially put out of its misery.

We know that the Packers' defense is susceptible to prolific passing attacks; they don't have to worry about that with the Vikings. They'll pay close attention to Stefon Diggs after he torched them in Week 2. After him, there's not much there to scare the Packers.

Vikings fans are clinging to the very slim chance their team can still reach the playoffs. It involves winning out and needing a batch of NFC contenders to lose this week and next. After the aberration that was last season, the Packers are ready to move one step closer to reclaiming the division crown and officially dashing the Vikes' hopes for a return trip to the postseason.

Packers 24  Vikings 13

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Comments (8):

The Queens are a wounded animal and we better beware. It feels like 34-31 GBP to me. We're not gonna dominate anybody from here on out and the queens want nothing more than to deny us the division. Both teams have suffered the injury bug, so it comes down to who wants it more? Wouldn't be surprised if the queens got the "W". Hopefully our "D" plays for 4 quarters to eliminate the queens then watch the Monday nighter. Remember Queens fans it's always about Nov.- Dec. football to get to Jan. Not Sept.- Oct.I said that to all my queens backers when they HAD a 2 game lead on us. They told me to remove my green and gold glasses that it was thier year. I said"Let's get to x-mas and then we'll talk.Well, well, well now lookie here. Been to the playoffs 7 straight and hoping for 8 years in a row and the purple CAN"T go back to back? We're coming up on 2017 and still no playoff "W'S" THIS DECADE?? We maybe one and done but that would equal what the Queens did last year wouldn"t it? Have a Merry Christmas and to all a good night.

on December 23rd, 2016 at 02:17am

The start and first half of this game will be the barometer of what to expect for the full 60. In their last two losses to the Queens the Packers found themselves playing from behind in both. Aaron Rodgers was picked twice in each one besides being harassed and hurried by their rush. The difference in last year's game for the division was a defensive td by Minny. The Packers can't allow turnovers, defensive scores or big kick returns to keep the visitors in it this time. Getting them down early should kill whatever fight there still is in that team. If the Packers put it all together like they did against Seattle this could be a blow-out. But I'll take a more conservative view: ARod his the Vikes for 3 td passes, the defense doesn't allow them across the goal line until the late 4th qtr. and Green Bay wins 27-13.

on December 23rd, 2016 at 06:04am

THC, one of the elements you forgot to mention was the "resignation" of one Norv Turner as part of the abomination that is the Vikings 2016 campaign. I do expect the Vikings to put in a better effort tomorrow, nothing like what we saw last week. They'd like nothing better than to play spoilers. And yes, technically they're still alive, but the only thing that can save them is two wins and a convoluted series of events no one has any control over. Merry Christmas, everyone! You too, Cane.

on December 23rd, 2016 at 10:09am

I know it's Christmas Davey, but your wrong.don't give those viking rubes anymore cred then they deserve. the Packers have lost 2 in a row but not last 2 at home. the Pack won in 2014, big 42-10 and 24-21 at the bank.we all make mistakes. the other thing that scares me, 1st you said they were dead, I told you not to bury them, now your getting a little cocky again. I don't roll that way. I told all my buds that would listen this week, viking fans too,that this will be vikes super bowl, just like bears last week, they will play there 2nd best game of year.the other was at home against us.Game is always turnovers and 3rd down conversions. if we convert 60% on 3rd down game is over. Hyde should cover rudolph man to man and play zone behind them, no big plays. 28 won't play, wish he would. Crosby kicks FG late to have 2 score lead and we win 27-17. GO PACKERS> Merry Christmas to all and good health that we take for granted.

on December 23rd, 2016 at 12:00pm

Heard the rumor that the reason the plane ran off the runway was they wanted to commit suicide after listening to PA all flight long. I really don't blame them for trying

on December 24th, 2016 at 03:32pm

Heard the rumor that the reason the plane ran off the runway was the pilots wanted to commit suicide after listening to PA all flight long. I really don't blame them for trying

on December 24th, 2016 at 03:33pm

Merry Christmas to Cane and Angryguy77 enjoy the off season. LOL

on December 24th, 2016 at 03:43pm

hey Wisconsin enjoy your 7 course Christmas dinner: a bake potato and a 6 pack with cheese whiz as an aphrodisiac.

on December 24th, 2016 at 07:31am

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