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5 reasons why the Packers will beat the Rams (and 1 reason why they might not)

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5 reasons why the Packers will beat the Rams (and 1 reason why they might not)

I keep hearing over and over again how this St. Louis Rams team could be trouble for the Green Bay Packers this afternoon.

"Oooooohhhhhhh, the Rams have a great front four. Aaron Rodgers will be running for his life."

"Ooooohhhhhhh, lookit the Rams new rookie running back Todd Gurley. He might be the next Adrian Peterson!"

"Ooooooohhhhh, the Rams went into Arizona and beat the Cardinals. Did you hear that? THE RAMS BEAT THE ARIZONA CARDINALS!!!! BE AFRAID, PACKERS. BE VERY AFRAID!!!!!"

Let me be as clear as I possibly can before proceeding. The Packers are 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.47 times better than the Rams. In fact, I feel guilty even including the Rams in the same sentence as the Packers while writing this silly preview. 

Unless every Packers player catches whatever disease Matt Hasselbeck had this week, the Packers will beat the Rams by a wide margin. A 50-burger is not out of the realm of possibility, so save room if you're eating bratwurst at your pregame tailgate. Those 50-burgers take up a lot of stomach space.

Let me refute the aforementioned talking points people are using when trying to fool us into thinking the Rams led by Nick Foles actually have a shot at beating the Packers led by Aaron Rodgers:

  • With the exception of last season, the end of 2010 and most of 2011, Rodgers has spent his entire time as the Packers quarterback running for his life. It's what he does. He runs for his life. It hasn't stopped him from being the best player in the league before and it sure as hell won't stop him from being the best player in the league against the lousy Rams.
  • In their last three games, the Packers have stonewalled Marshawn Lynch, Jamaal Charles and Carlos Hyde. The last thing the Packers are worried about is some rookie coming off ACL surgery lighting them up. Puh-leaze.
  • So, the Rams beat the Arizona Cardinals last week, eh? And I'm supposed to be impressed by this? IT'S THE ARIZONA FREAKING CARDINALS!!! We're not talking about the Bill Walsh 49ers here, we're talking about the ARIZONA CARDINALS! C'mon, man. Beating the Cardinals is like shooting a squirrel. It's fun, but you don't mount the squirrel on the wall in your man cave next to the 13-point buck.

 Still not convinced that the Packers are going to roll over the Rams? Here are five more reasons why you should believe me:

Turnovers
The Rams forced three turnovers to beat the Cardinals in Arizona last week. That ain't happening today. Rodgers does not turn the ball over in Lambeau, so the Rams and their one-trick pony Todd Gurley offense will be forced to go long distances if they want to score.

Offensive line
Everyone is talking about how tough the Rams defensive line will be for the Packers offensive line to contain. What about the Packers surging defensive line against the Rams mishmash of an offensive line? Mike Daniels and B.J. Raji are playing some of the best ball of their careers. Even Datone Jones got in on the action against the 49ers and Letroy Guion is back. The Rams have three first-year starters up front (right tackle, center and left guard). Hats off to the Rams front four. They're talented. But the Packers defensive line isn't too shabby, either, and I think they match up favorably with the Rams' inexperienced o-line.

QB
We all know how great Rodgers is. We also all know that Nick Foles is...well, Nick Foles. Foles is definitely a step up from Colin Kaepernick, but it's not like he's going to match Rodgers throw for throw. If the Packers get out ahead early and let their defense tee off, things could be over in a hurry. I can't see the Packers losing a game at home where their advantage at the game's most important position is this big.

Phat Eddie
The Rams are allowing over 120 rushing yards per game, 26th worst in football. After losing LB Alec Ogletree last week to a broken ankle, stopping the run won't be getting easier any time soon. Yes, the Rams front four might be able to get after Rodgers, but that pass rush can be slowed down some if Lacy and a Packers offensive line with 287 combined starts under their belts are able to get going on the ground.

Greg Williams
The Rams defense is coordinated by Gregg Williams, the Bounty Gate guy who really, really, really loves to blitz. With the way Rodgers uses cadence to not only draw opponents offside, but also get the defense to commit to what they're doing early, I just don't think it's a good idea to consistently blitz Rodgers at Lambeau. I also don't think Williams will be able to contain himself. Look for Rodgers to buy time and make plays when Williams brings extra pressure.


 If all the hype and consternation about the Rams proves to be true and they do put up a fight at Lambeau, they might be able to pull off a win if...

Copying the Bears
Why would anyone want to copy the hapless Chicago Bears? Because they almost beat the Packers in week 1 by running the ball, keeping Rodgers on the sideline, and not letting Packers receivers make big plays downfield. If the Rams do what the Bears did in week 1, they've got a good shot to win because the Rams are much more talented defensively than Chicago is.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (17) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

sheppercheeser's picture

I don't see this as one-sided as Adam does. It's a strange thing to whine about, but I'm afraid of a let down by GB, due to their recent successes. It won't be easy for MM to keep the team "up" and focused, game after game. The wins won't be coming any easier. The injury report seems to growing as well, though I don't mind seeing our JV players get some quality playing time.

sheppercheeser's picture

P.S.- I also hope that the Packers will rest Bulaga's knee and put Barclay out there. It will be a real test for Don, but I believe it will help him become a better player- good for his psyche and skill honing.

4thand1's picture

Bulaga said he was playing.

Dan Stodola's picture

If Bulaga is healthy enough to play, he plays. There are only 16 games, not like 80 or 160 like other sports. Games are too precious to not play your best players if they are able to play, there is too much pressure and importance on every game not to play your best players if they are able to play. Baseball, basketball and hockey maybe you can get away w/ that kinda thinking but not in the NFL. Every game matters way too much to not play your best players!

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Very cogent analysis. I agree with your observations and indeed have expressed many of them. It is your conclusions drawn from those observations that give me pause. I agree that St. Louis' offense is not worrisome. Bad WRs, below average O-line, mediocre QB. Best hope for them is that their offensive line can run block and Gurley is talented enough to produce enough of a running attack that Foles is able to provide some balance through the air. Still, agree that GB's defensive line is more likely to dominate and stop the run, and the DBs will hold up out on their islands. Their TE Cook has a lot of talent, and could be a problem. Still, I don't see the Rams scoring more than 17, and less wouldn't surprise me.

I am more concerned about GB's offense. True, Rodgers has run for his life before, but he always had some really good receiving threats. Adam mentions 2010, but that was a 9-7 team that had Jennings, Driver, Nelson (Finley for 4 games- helping GB to a 3-1 record). I think Cobb is a #1 WR, but I don't hold Jones, or Monty in high esteem, despite the hype machine. Obviously, Lacy is an upgrade of Brandon Jackson of 2010. I also agree that the Ram's defense looks better on paper than they do on the field. My bold prediction is that Abby contributes a solid game today, and GB puts up 27 to 31 points.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Wonder who disliked my post. Predicted Rams can't score, and GB has trouble scoring but does enough. Hmmmmm.

Rossonero's picture

I don't think we'll drop 50+ on the Rams, but I do expect the Packers to have the advantage vs. an inexperienced Rams offensive line.

Foles won at Lambeau already, albeit with a very different Eagles and packers teams. Still, any team that has beaten Seattle and Arizona should not be casually dismissed.

Mike Spofford made a great point on Packers.com: the Cardinals did not finish drives, settling for five FGs. The Packers must finish drives.
Packers 21, Rams, 16.

The TKstinator's picture

Before any game, my "analysis" goes like this: if both teams play their A game, which one wins? (Green Bay)
What does each team do well? Can the other team respond to that?

Then, I think about weird stuff, like inopportune turnovers (kickoff returner fumbles at the ten yard line) key players being knocked out of the game (don't take that thought any further!), what if it's more like one team's C game against the opponents' A game?

Then I realize that whatever I predict doesn't matter. My level of confidence doesn't matter. Once the ball is kicked off, all I have to do is watch and enjoy.
It's worked pretty well so far.

4thand1's picture

The only thing that concerns me is Rodgers running for his life. The odds of him getting hit awkwardly go up. I hope the Packers run the ball 30+ times today. I'm excited to watch some defense, yes Packers defense.

Tundraboy's picture

Agree!

Mario Willis's picture

I have Tim Barnes starting at Center for the Rams am I missing something? He is a fourth year not a ROOKIE. BJ Raji will own him but just want to make sure I have my facts right.

J0hn Denver's Gavel's picture

My prediction: Pack 31- Rams 13. Pack scores early and leads the entire game. 5-0.

Since '61's picture

5 reasons why Packers will win:
Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers

Sticking with it for 5-0. Thanks, Since '61

The TKstinator's picture

Well played, sir.

dobber's picture

In this case, it turned out to be more like:

CMIII
CMIII
CMIII
CMIII
CMIII

Since '61's picture

Dobber - agreed! But whatever the reason for the win, I have to stick with the AR mojo as long as we're getting Ws. Thanks, Since '61

croatpackfan's picture

I must say, besides comfort score, nothing is predicted correctly! Doh... If you want to fewel better, I was at the same page with you!

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