Cleat Geeks

Green & Gold; Week 2 Keys

Following a solid but far from perfect season opening victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars the Green Bay Packers will remain on the road to face their first divisional game of the year and in the process, help the Minnesota Vikings open their brand new billion dollar plus stadium. The following areas are keys to the Packers leaving Minnesota 2-0 on Sunday night before returning home to prepare for next week’s home opener.gjallarhorn2

Continue to Stop the Run – The Packers run defense was solid against the Jaguars last week holding them to under two yards per carry. The run defense was successful because there was not only initially tacklers who put hits on ball carriers but there was also plenty of help that quickly arrived to provide support and assistance and ultimately put the runner on the ground. The Packers need to follow the same procedure as the run defense gets a tougher test with Adrian Peterson this week. Peterson almost never goes down on first contact so the packers-vs-jaguars1Packers again need lots of help off the initial contact in order to put Peterson on the ground.

Get control early – As mentioned above, the Vikings are opening a new stadium, with this game the place will be going crazy from the opening kickoff. The Packers offense needs to get on the board to take some of the crowds punch away. A quieter crowd will allow Aaron Rodgers to run the no huddle offense if he wishes to do so. Quieting the crowd will help to slow down the Vikings pass rush.

Win special teams – The Vikings are not publicly announcing who there quarterback will be in this game. Regardless of who it is the Vikings will be looking to have that individual working as often as possible. Cordarrelle Paterson is a weapon for the Vikings in both the kick and punt return game. He is extremely quick but the Packers need to be solid with both of their coverage units in order to win field position and make the Vikings go on long drives to score.

No turnovers – The Vikings scored 25 points in their season opening victory over the Titans.14 of those 25 points were courtesy of two packers-vs-jaguars2Titans turnovers that went for points on the turnover play. The Packers offense has to take care of the ball. The Vikings offense has to be able to sustain long drives. The Packers cannot give them short fields to make an average to below average offense better and more productive. By contrast the Packers scored a touchdown on a short field from the only Jacksonville turnover in that game. The Packers won that game by four so turnovers are important in division games that figure to be close on the scoreboard.

Be clean – The Packers were week 1 winners but they were far from clean in their performance. There was one occurrence where half the offense thought they were running a run play and the other half thought they were running a pass play. The offense had several other issues having to burn timeouts because of issues getting plays called and snapped before the play clock expired. They were also called for delay of game at the beginning of a drive. These are small errors but they can be costly in tight games. The Packers need a clean game in order to crash the Vikings stadium opening party.

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