Found October 05, 2013 on
Fox Sports Wisconsin:
Green Bay Packers
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Five things to watch for in Sunday afternoon's Week 5 matchup between the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions:
1. How does Aaron Rodgers bounce back from a rare bad game?
There haven't been many poor performances from Rodgers in recent years. Therefore, there isn't much of a sample size to draw upon in determining how he responds to an un-Rodgers-like game. But after Rodgers had his lowest passer rating since Week 14 of the 2010 season, this will be a chance for him to put that game behind him. But against a Lions defense that is playing very well, it won't be easy for Rodgers.
Last season, Rodgers wasn't at his best against Detroit. Though Green Bay won both games, Rodgers totaled only two touchdowns and 409 passing yards. This season, the Lions' defense is second in the NFL with eight interceptions.
The Packers found out how difficult it is to win when Rodgers doesn't play well. Despite Green Bay forcing four turnovers in Week 3, Rodgers' first multiple-interception performance since Week 7 of the 2010 season resulted in a Packers loss.
2. Eddie Lacy, Johnathan Franklin splitting carries
When the regular season started one month ago, coach Mike McCarthy's plan was for Lacy to be the featured back. This was proven to be the case in Week 1, with Lacy getting the vast majority of the carries. But after Lacy's concussion in Week 2 gave a chance for Franklin and James Starks to play, both played well and it changed the direction that McCarthy is going with the running game.
As McCarthy stated in his Friday press conference, he now considers Lacy and Franklin to both be three-down backs. Though Lacy will likely start and take the most snaps, Franklin will be involved. However, if one of them steps forward and the other struggles, this plan could change again.
3. Stopping Reggie Bush
Multiple Packers coaches commented this week that this is the best that Bush has ever played in the NFL. Though Bush never lived up to his high draft billing, he's shining in his first season with the Lions and has given Detroit a dual-threat offense that it hasn't had in years.
Bush has already faced the other two NFC North teams and performed very well against both the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears, rushing for 229 yards with two touchdowns.
If Green Bay can contain Bush and make the Lions one-dimensional, the Packers' chances of winning will certainly increase.
4. Calvin Johnson unstoppable at Lambeau Field
Over the past three seasons, Johnson has had his way with the Packers. Between his 27 catches, 448 yards and three touchdowns in just three games, Johnson has dominated nearly any matchup or scheme that Green Bay has attempted.
However, Sam Shields has emerged as the Packers' top cornerback. Though Bengals receiver A.J. Green isn't quite at Johnson's elite level, he's still one of the best at the position and Shields shut him down in Week 3. With Shields matching him throughout most of that game, Green had only four catches for 46 yards -- and Shields also made a great play for an interception. If Shields can have even remotely that level of success against Johnson, the NFL will soon be discussing the former undrafted player as the league's next star cornerback.
5. Return game without Jeremy Ross
McCarthy's plan on kick and punt return isn't just to use one player to replace Ross. Randall Cobb was used on occasion in the first three games, and he'll continue to factor in. But the Packers will also use Franklin and Micah Hyde. Franklin would be in the kick return role and Hyde would take over punts, but it's all but certain that Cobb would at least take the key returns.
Follow Paul Imig on Twitter
BEST OF MAXIM
Fans of the Cincinnati Bengals have a lot to be vexed about after the first quarter of the 2013 year has passed with an upsetting 17-6 loss to the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy stadium last Sunday.
After four games and a 2-2 record with a 1-1 split in the AFC North, there are certain intangibles that seem to be missing from the ’13 squad compared to the 2012 team that dominated...
Bengals receiver A.J. Green has hauled in just 22 of his 46 targets (47.8 percent) over his last four games.Fantasy Spin:Green has 199 yards and one touchdown in that span. That includes five catches for 61 yards Sunday against the Patriots. He should find more room to work in Week 6 at Buffalo.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh spent sometime together at a youth football camp this summer in Oregon. But that doesn’t mean they’re friends. “Well, I haven’t gotten any calls from him yet,” Rodgers said Wednesday via USA Today. “Not sure if there’s going to be some sort of
Green Bay Packers star quarterback and Superbowl MVP Aaron Rodgers and actress and activist Emmanuelle Chriqui will host a special rally for the Enough Project’s Conflict Free Campus Initiative, or CFCI, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Memorial Union Terrace Stage on October 7th, at 7:30pm. To Learn more visit the Enough Project on Facebook.
Jim Irsay Takes a Creepy Selfie...
Ndamukong Suh and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers spent some time hanging out together at a football camp in Oregon this summer, and even though Suh indicated that he likes the Green Bay Packers quarterback well enough, the Detroit Lions defensive lineman says there’s no chance the two will ever be friends. And no, […]The post Ndamukong Suh likes Aaron Rodgers but...
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- About 75 minutes before kickoff, players inside the Green Bay Packers' locker room began to find out that Detroit Lions' star wide receiver Calvin Johnson was inactive for their Week 5 matchup.
While Johnson's absence certainly played into the Packers' favor and their 22-9 victory over the Lions, at least one Green Bay player didn't take it...
As New England heads into a potential AFC Playoff preview, here's a look at the top individual matchups to keep an eye on as the Patriots link up with the Bengals. Aqib Talib vs. AJ Green This is going to be a good one. Talib and Green lock horns in what should be one of the more notable cornerback and receiver battles early on in 2013. This will be the third week in a...
The NFL schedule heads into their fifth week of the season. As with every week in the regular season, there are some very intriguing matchups this week once again. The Tennessee Titans face a serious test this week. Can the New England Patriots win their second consecutive road game and seventh dating back to last season? The Green Bay Packers come into this week, off a bye, needing...
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Handing out grades following the Green Bay Packers' 22-9 win over the Detroit Lions:
Passing Offense: B-
One passing touchdown isn't exactly the type of game that built Aaron Rodgers' reputation into that of a superstar quarterback. Neither is throwing for a modest 274 yards. However, he did finish with a very Rodgers-like 106.8 passer rating, which...
What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Mike McCarthy's offense?
Aaron Rodgers? The wonderful arsenal of receivers the likes of Cobb, Jones, Nelson and Finely?
When you think of the Packers offense, you typically gloss over the running game and go straight to its dominant passing attack.
It's been associated with the...
For a change, defense set the pace for the Packers before the offense caught up.
James Jones caught a long touchdown pass from Aaron Rodgers, and Green Bay contained the undermanned Detroit Lions for a 22-9 win Sunday.
Mason Crosby kicked five field goals. The Packers offense struggled to get into the end zone until Rodgers found Jones on an 83-yard scoring pass down the left sideline...
The NFL is known by many coaches, players, and fans, as “The Not For Long league”. The NFL is the most unpredictable and exciting sport in the world. Fans and media will often make snap judgments on players and teams each week. As a fan of the NFL for 20 years, I want to give fans some insight on the best matchups each week of the NFL season. This article will highlight,...
The Packers took control in the second half to beat Detroit 22-9, taking advantage of Calvin Johnson's absence. Aaron Rodgers hit James Jones for two big plays and Eddie Lacy helped the Packers control the clock.