FanPost

Counterpunches will be the difference

Everyone is talking this week's game up as Aaron Rogers, arguably having the best year a quarterback has ever had, matching up against the Giants defensive line which, when healthy (and they are now) can disrupt a game and impose their will.

What nobody is talking about (that I can find) is how Aaron Rogers and the Packers offense plans on dealing with this.

The Packers rolled to a 15-1 record with a defense that, while ball-hawkish, gives up a lot of yards, and a running game that has been spotty at best. No matter how good a team is, they cannot be one-dimensional and win as much as the Packers have won, even if that one dimension is as precedent-setting as Rogers and his offense has been.

For those who think the Packers will just line up and dare the Giants pass rush to beat them man-to-man while doing five-step drops, they are probably mistaken. The Packers are planning too, watching tape, preparing for what they think we will do. They will game plan with this in mind. They have to. They may be somewhat one dimensional but there are many dimensions to the passing game and the Packers mastered all of them.

What I envision the Packers doing is a lot of things to mitigate our pass rush.

Obviously they will try and run the ball, and our ability to stop the run in this game will go a long way towards determining how good a chance we have to pull the upset. Our run defense has been much improved as of late and even in the Packer game we only gave up 89 yards - and 32 of those yards came from Rogers, who led the team.

Even while being pretty good against the run last time (they averaged only 2.3 yards per carry outside of Rogers scrambling) the Packers still put up a lot of yards and points though the air, but they will probably try and address the improved play of the Giants defensively in their game plan.

They will be doing a lot of max protect which limits his weapons downfield. One key will be how we are able to deal with those scenarios. Can JPP and Osi get pressure even when they both have two guys to beat? If they can, that will go a long way towards dictating the game.

Additionally, you can expect to see a lot of play action (how effective that is depends on how effective their running threat is). They will be doing lots of three-step drops with short slants to receivers and especially those back shoulder timing plays that Rogers makes look so automatic.

They will run at least half a dozen screen passes most likely, including to wide receivers. They will bootleg Rogers on pass plays and don't be shocked to see him take off when he sees man coverage and an opening.

The best thing for the Giants would be to stop the run and make sure tackles. They also have to beat up receivers at the line. Miss a tackle or a bump and the result can be a huge play. Play soundly and you can put the Packers in longer distance situations where our pass rush cannot be mitigated with scheming or play calls.

A lot of this also exploits the Giants weakness on defense, linebacker. While Michael Boley played in the last Packer game, he did so with his hamstring injury still lingering. Chase Blackburn played in that game but it was his first game back after an extended absence; Jones was the starter.

Mark my words: This game will not be won because our defensive line takes over, barring something ridiculously unlikely like the Giants taking a huge lead. It will be won because the linebackers and secondary don't give up extra yards after catches (and of course avoids breakdowns leaving Packer players wide open).

Al Holcomb is the Giants Quality Control Coach on defense. His job this week will be to give Perry Fewell the information he needs to plan for the Packer counterpunch so he can prepare for it. I am hopeful that they have the team prepared for what the Packers will be bringing but be assured that whatever it is will attempt to deflect from the Giants defensive strength.

FanPosts are written by community members. This is simply a way for community members to express opinions too long to be contained in a comment.

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