Cleat Geeks

A 6 Pack of Keys for the Packers to Advance

In order for the Green Bay Packers to continue their season past a Sunday afternoon Wild Card game against the Washington Redskins they will need to accomplish the following six objectives. Five of these will be offensive keys and the sixth will involve both offense and defense.aaron-rodgers-10369-1366x768

  1. Do a better job protecting Aaron Rodgers. The Packers offensive line has allowed 47 sacks this season or an advantage of nearly three sacks per game. What is most alarming is the face that 14 of them occurred in the last two games. The sack totals do not account for the many other throws that Rodgers has been hit or forced to throw under duress. Hopefully the offensive line gets somewhat healthy this week and the unit can return to the personnel it used at the beginning of the season when Rodgers had more time to go through reads and find receivers.
  2. Catch the ball. The injury to Jordy Nelson has been well documented. He is a very talented receiver who had over 1500 yards with 13 touchdowns last season. His loss has been significant but it has been magnified by the other receivers and tight ends failing to step up and fill the void that his injury created. The Packers rank near the bottom of the league in production from their tight end position. Richard Rodgers has 58 catches for 510 yards and the Packers have gotten under 700 yards total from their tight end position so far this season. The Nelson injury forced others to step up and that has not happened at least to a good enough degree. Second year receiver Davante Adams has been a disappointment with his amount of drops and inability to break tackles. If the Packers are going to advance the receivers need to catch the ball and break tackles. This is a trademark of the Packers offense that has never really gotten going this season as far no receiver has over 900 yards in receptions. Adams and company must be drop free Sunday and also take a couple throws for big yardage.
  3. Make a commitment to and productively run the ball.EddieLacy That’s a two part statement for a reason because you cannot commit to running the ball if it is not being productive. Eddie Lacy has his lowest yardage season since being drafted the Packers three years ago. Lacy rushed for over 1,100 yards in each of his first two seasons with the Packers. This season he failed to reach 800 yards. Also this season Lacy has his lowest touchdown total in three years. Lacy only has three rushing touchdowns this season compared too his first two seasons when he had nine and 11 respectively. In order to make it past Sunday the Packers need to be able to feed Lacy the ball and allow him to rip off yards. There is some rain in the forecast for Sunday that may push the Packers toward running the ball more. The Packers also need Lacy to be productive because it will help balance the offense. A good running game will help slow down the Redskins pass rush.
  4. Start Quick. From about the middle of the season forward the Packers offense has struggled in the early portion of games Being on the road in a hostile environment there is no better way to quiet all that with a quick start from the offense. Getting in front will allow the Packers pass rush to take effect and will also take the crowd out of the game.Packers_script
  5. Convert Third Downs. Third down conversions have been another problem area all season. Culminating with them going 2/15 on third down in Sunday’s loss to the Vikings. On Sunday the Packers actually had more conversions on fourth down (3) than they did on third down (2). If the Packers are going to advance they must convert third downs in order to extend drives.
  6. Eliminate Offensive Turnovers and Create Defensive Turnovers. This has been another problem area over the last couple weeks. Over the last two weeks the Packers have lost the turnover battle 6 to 4. You lose the turnover battle in a playoff game and the odds of coming home with the season being over are very good. Turnovers create short fields, momentum, and easy points and that is quick method to coming home eliminated in the NFL playoffs.

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