Green Bay Packers’ head coach Mike McCarthy believes his team has the necessary running game to get them where they want to go, this Sunday against the New York Giants he will have to prove it. The Giants have what the Packers desperately need in a bruising running game with Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw. Imagine Aaron Rodgers with those guys behind him.
The Packers will need to keep the Giants offense on the sidelines because the Packers’ defense isn’t exactly great against the run, if the Giants get rolling early it could be an ugly end to the Packers’ playoff hopes. Somehow the Packers will need to play ball control offense for four quarters and not just one drive late in a game against a so-so opponent.
Rodgers will be back at quarterback so McCarthy will probably be tempted to air-it-out as usual when he should be protecting his franchise QB who is coming off a missed game because of a concussion. This game could be a turning point in McCarthy’s head coaching career, losing Sunday is simply not an option. The phrase that was first uttered in Green Bay has never more poignant: “run to win.”
Under backup quarterback Matt Flynn last week the Packers’ offense looked more like a West Coast Offense than it has probably all year. The Patriots’ defense isn’t all that good, but none the less the Packers were able to run a little. The Giants on the other hand have been hovering around the top of the league in defense all year, same as the their offense has.
If Dom Capers can come up with a scheme to slow down the Giants’ running game quarterback Eli Manning will give them some opportunities for interceptions. Manning might be the one quarterback playing today that has a chance to break Brett Favre’s all-time interception record of 336, he has 20 this year to lead the league.
I’m looking for a knockdown drag-out fight much like the last time the Giants visited Green Bay. It’s going to take a huge effort on both sides of the ball to win this one. Can McCarthy finally find a way to win a close game? The Packers playoff hopes depend on it.