The main reason I write these 5 reasons posts is to mock, ridicule and tear down the Packers’ weekly opponent and/or their fanbase. Since the Packers play the Vikings, Bears and Lions six times each season, I usually have plenty of material to work with.
But how am I supposed to make fun of the Patriots? They’re a model NFL franchise, in the same class of the Packers. Tearing down the Patriots would make me seem petty and mean, wouldn’t it?
I don’t know. Maybe.
I suppose I could rip Patriots’ fans for being entitled East Coasters who don’t appreciate everything their team has accomplished the last 15 seasons.
Playing the (alleged) murderer at tight end card is also an option, but we’ve done a pretty good job forgetting about that already.
What about Spygate? The Patriots haven’t won a Super Bowl since they were caught cheating in the 2007 Spygate scandal. But that was before everyone thought Roger Goodell was an evil corporate woman-hating monster, so people didn’t get overly mad when Goodell let the Patriots off with a slap on the wrist.
Bill Belichick seems like a total douche. How about ripping him? They guy keeps winning, so people give him a pass.
Or how about all the Boston homers on ESPN and the Patriots apologists that permeate the national media?
I could go on and on, but I won’t talk about any of those things. The Patriots are just so perfect, after all…
Here are five reasons why that perfection will be disrupted by the Packers later today:
Tom Brady is an amazing quarterback, neck and neck with Aaron Rodgers for best in the league. But if I had to pick a quarterback to complete a deep pass, it wouldn’t be Brady. Brady completed over 50 percent of his passes that traveled 20 yards or more in 2007. Since then, he hasn’t come close to that percentage and is only completing 34 percent of deep passes this season according to Pro Football Focus. Obviously, the Patriots are more than capable of winning without launching deep passes, but if Brady overshoots a couple of open receives downfield like Teddy Bridgewater did last week, it’ll be a boost for the Packers’ defense.
Lambeau Field advantage
The Packers have outscored opponents 219-85 at Lambeau this season. Combine that with the fact that I’ll be in the stands, and the Packers’ homefield advantage is real.
The Packers are going to need all the help they can get to slow down the Patriots’ offense. Out of nowhere, Josh Boyd has started playing well. Seriously, he has. Watch him the last couple of weeks and you’ll see a guy darting through gaps and generally being disruptive in the base defense. Winning 1-on-1 matchups up front is going to be the key to the Packers coming out on top later today. Boyd’s been winning more than he’s been losing lately.
Who needs Gronk when you have Andrew Quarless and Richard Rodgers? Ok, ok, ok, I’m being factious, but Quarless and Rodgers have steadily improved in recent weeks. If Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner frustrate Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb, it’s nice to have a couple of tight ends for Aaron Rodgers to turn to, even if they aren’t one-man wrecking crews like Rob Gronkowski.
I’m a little hesitant to get too hyped up about Lacy’s big game against the Vikings. Yes, it’s nice that he gained 125 yards and closed out the game, but if you ask any Packers’ opponent if they’d rather see Lacy run the ball 25 times at the expense of Rodgers throwing a couple extra passes downfield, they’ll gladly give the extra carries to Lacy, even if he’s having a good day. Against good teams like the Patriots, the Packers will live and die on the arm of Rodgers. Lacy will come in handy if the Packers build any sort of second half lead or have an opportunity to close out the game in their four-minute offense. Again, I’m not dragging down what Lacy means to this team. Having a run/pass balance when both facets of the game are effective is a good thing. But let’s not forget that the Packers’ go as Rodgers goes, especially against the NFL’s best.
If the Patriots win this game, we’re going to have to listen to people bloviate about how the Packers can’t win a big game against a quality opponent with a good quarterback for the rest of eternity. It’ll drive me crazy, but it could happen because of…
If you’re getting old like I am, odds are good you played the arcade game “Rampage” growing up. While little Army men shot at you and helicopters tried to take you down, your “Rampage” character — either a giant gorilla, lizard or werewolf — destroyed buildings, ate people and stomped on vehicles. The entire point of the game was to cause as much destruction as possible before you were taken down. That’s Rob Gronkowski in a nutshell. Gaining yards and scoring seems like a bonus to Gronk. His main objective is to just cause chaos and reign destruction upon whomever gets in his way. I have no idea how the Packers, or any team, can stop Gronk. I suppose you just have to grab onto him and hope he falls before he knocks down all of your buildings, or eats all of your defensive players.
Adam Czech is a a freelance sports reporter living in the Twin Cities and a proud supporter of American corn farmers. When not working, Adam is usually writing about, thinking about or worrying about the Packers. Follow Adam on Twitter. Twitter .