Senior writer jclombardi highlights Packers keys and game plan to beat Falcons.
Packers vs Falcons: Kickoff–High noon. Keys to the game–Packers’ offense hasn’t been as prolific as expected, but it hasn’t been losing games. Green Bay will have to make the most of its possessions because Atlanta will likely dominate the clock. If the offensive line can protect QB Rodgers, he’ll find mismatches downfield. WR Jennings has been particularly hot. The Packers have allowed 10 combined points the past three weeks while the Falcons are averaging 31.5 points over their past four games. Green Bay isn’t deep throughout the secondary and the Falcons could go with more no-huddle and spread the field. But while Ryan hasn’t been sacked in three of his past four games, the Packers are aggressive and enter with 29 sacks. So look for the Falcons to be conservative and feature plenty of RB Turner. Game plan–The Packers and Falcons not only are riding four-game winning streaks, but both teams haven’t turned over the football in their last three outings. The setting favors the Falcons at the Georgia Dome. For the Packers to break that streak of invincibility, their opportunistic defense will have to take the Atlanta offense out of its ball-control, mistake-free comfort zone. What’s more, the Falcons rank second in the league for time of possession. A high rate of success converting third downs has lot to do with their ability to play keep-away and pounding the football with RBs Turner and Snelling. Green Bay will throw the football and QB Rodgers is red hot. Rodgers has been targeting Greg Jennings with great frequency the last five games, so the Falcons figure to shade coverage Jennings’ way. It will be on Rodgers to look off Jennings and spread the wealth with the other key receivers.