Broncos vs Packers: Week 3 Matchup

Aaron breaks down both sides of the ball in his preview of Sunday's showdown with the Broncos. 

Vic Fangio brings his 0-2 Denver Broncos to Lambeau Field on Sunday to take on Matt LaFleur's 2-0 (GOD does that feel good) Green Bay Packers in what should be another defensive-heavy affair. 

Here's a look at what to expect from both sides of the ball and my sure-to-be-incorrect call on who wins the game. 

When The Broncos Have The Ball

Former first round pick Garret Bolles, the Broncos starting left tackle, committed four holding penalties in last week’s loss to the Bears. Four. At one point during the broadcast, someone remarked "He has more holding penalties than the Broncos have points." Indeed, a Brandon McManus field goal is all Denver had been able to put up on the scoreboard at that point. 

Needless to say, expect the Smiths to take turns terrorizing Bolles on obvious passing downs. I'd expect to see a lot of traditional screens, bubble screens, smoke routes, etc from offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello in hopes of just inviting the Smiths up the field. 

For the third week in a row, the Packers want the quarterback...to play quarterback.

I joke, but it's true that the more we see Joe Flacco dropping back, going through his progressions and letting it fly, the better it is for the Packers. 

Emanuel Sanders can expect to draw Jaire Alexander in coverage and I expect Jaire to travel with him. Sanders is too talented to think he'll be shut down completely, but expect Alexander to limit him. I'd also expect to see Amos down in the box for a good portion of this game and for Darnell Savage to play Robber and to shade away from Sanders and towards Courtland Sutton, who is a big play waiting to happen. 

If it looks like Alexander needs help (I don't expect him to, but you never know...) look for Pettine to go to more Cover 2 and 3 looks. 

It will be interesting to see how Pettine manages the loss of Raven Greene. 

Early on vs Minnesota we saw a lot of BJ Goodson and he looked...uninspiring. Will another week of work help settle him into what Pettine wants to do on early downs? I'm dubious, but here's hoping. 

If there's one guy who could emerge for the Broncos this week, I'd look to Noah Fant. The rookie tight end hasn't been incredibly productive so far but I think he could get some favorable matchups out of base personnel looks. He has the tools to be trouble for Martinez or any of the backers. 

When The Packers Have The Ball

Things were so beautiful last week until Geronimo's fumble, weren't they? From using both Jamaal Williams and Aaron Jones in the backfield, to utilizing Jones in the passing game to working Davante Adams open early and often, it felt like Christmas had arrived early. 

But then the fumble happened and it seemed everything fell apart. 

One thing I will say, the Packers shot themselves in the foot and kept points off the board, both with the fumble and with Aaron Rodgers' brain fart where he thought it was first down when it was actually fourth down. Both those possessions would more than likely have ended at least in a field goal. Throw in the horrible snap from Linsley and the Packers pretty much stopped themselves more than the Vikings made some incredible adjustment. 

Rodgers did seem to start to hold the ball a bit as the game wore on and you can tell he's still not completely trusting his protection. And it's hard to blame him when the interior continues to have issues. 

With Lane Taylor not practicing on Friday due to a biceps injury, it sure looks like Elgton Jenkins will get his first start at left guard this Sunday. I liked what he put on film last week and I'm anxious to see him get a full game's worth of work. 

Along the outside, this is the third week in a row the Packers tackles will be up against the best in the business.

I expect Von Miller to bounce back and forth, but look for him to mostly go after David Bakhtiari. That sounds weird, but it sure looks like his back issues are causing him some problems. Bryan Bulaga, on the other hand, has been the best player on offense. And I don't think it's particularly close. 

A lot has been made this week regarding the wide outs behind Adams, and I understand the concern. But it's still very early and there are plenty of plays that show guys like MVS and Allison doing good work only to either be turned down by the quarterback, or just missed because the throw went elsewhere. 

Chris Harris was, once upon a time, a predominately slot cornerback. But that's changed big time under Fangio. Look for him to travel with Adams for much of Sunday's game. And look for MVS take advantage of rookie corner Issac Yiadom and to shut a lot of people up. ;) 

Enough Already, Who Wins?

I don't expect the offensive explosion we saw at the beginning of the Vikings game, but I do expect the Packers to move the ball for much of the day. While it won't always end in points, they should generate enough to let the defense pin its ears back and get after Flacco. It won't be pretty, but give me the Packers in this one, 24-13. 

13 points

Comments (27)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
murf7777's picture

September 20, 2019 at 01:34 pm

This is off subject, but wanted to talk about this to the CheeseheadTV fan base. Love this site. I'm reading the new book out on Ron Wolf's time in Green Bay. Very interesting read. Ron's legacy was going to live or die on his decision within the first few days of the job to trade a #1 draft pick for Favre. It was controversial at the time. Ron was hired as GM late in 1991 season (November) and in the first few days, in season, he fired Infante. During the offseason, he hired Holmgren as coach. In 1993, the first year of FA he brought in Reggie White, arguably the best FA ever in Packers history. (Favre, Holmgren & White) What a Trifecta! SB win!

I know not everyone likes TT's work, (take away his last two years) but there is an interesting parallel between these two men's careers and probably something TT took from Wolf, while being his understudy in the 90's. In 2005, TT's first year, he drafted Aaron Rodgers, also a controversial pick, especially since Favre was still winning and Rodgers was sinking in the Draft for various reasons. In 2006, he fires Sherman and hires McCarthy. In addition, it was also 2006 he brings in probably the 2nd biggest FA in GB's history, Charles Woodson. (Rodgers, McCarthy, & Woodson) Another Great Trifecta! SB win!

Both made these difficult decisions early in their positions as GM's for our beloved Packers. They could've went either way, but they made the tough decision and it work out for both. TT, watched and learned from one of the best, Ron Wolf.

Both are in the Packer lore. I think Gutey has some similar traits and his legacy is just beginning. Sorry, about the lengthy write up.

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Packer Fan's picture

September 20, 2019 at 02:10 pm

I think bringing in the Smith's along with Amos and Turner has to rank pretty high on the FA success.

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murf7777's picture

September 20, 2019 at 02:17 pm

Hey PackerFan….they sure look like good FA's and why I state I think Gutey is on his way. But, and a very big But, you cannot even start to compare those signings with the signing of Reggie White or Charles Woodson. Both were key components on why we won the two SB's. Not just on the field but their leadership was topnotch.

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Tarynfor12's picture

September 20, 2019 at 02:50 pm

Thompson likely had Rodgers gone way before the 24th selection. TT was compelled to take Rodgers there. How long do you think TT would have been around had he not taken Rodgers or if Rodgers wasn't available.Which awesome QB would GB been forced to take or trade up for if able, had we passed on Rodgers and kept Favre until 2010.

A question ...If TT actually valued Rodgers in the 05' draft, why hadn't he traded up to get him sooner instead of watching/chancing him fall to 24th and which likely saved TT's tenure as GM? If no Rodgers in 05' and even with the 09' draft of Raj and Matthews, would TT still be around without the QB of the future on the bench behind a Favre who had become a detriment,less his one year wonder in Minn due to having the near perfect team to create the perfect storm that still failed because of Favre?

TT had about 3 good years of draft and the one in 05' seems to be one that he wasn't all in on but one where he got boxed into a corner during that draft and lucky for him, it all worked out....sorta...kinda...since his failings undercut what could/should have been with Rodgers during the TT years.

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murf7777's picture

September 20, 2019 at 03:18 pm

You can argue the What ifs and assumptions all day long but the reality is he drafted Rodgers when Brett was still in his prime. The reality is he also hired McCarthy and brought in arguably the second biggest free agent in Charles Woodson. Sure he made many mistakes but everybody does. Like it or not, He will go down in the Packer lore as one of their great GM’s.

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PeteK's picture

September 20, 2019 at 03:53 pm

Yes, and where would Wolf be without Favre.

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jannes bjornson's picture

September 20, 2019 at 06:33 pm

His best move was getting rid of Sherman. Gil Brandt recalled in an anecdotal story regarding the 2005 draft, that he was havng dinner with Rodgers and told Rodgers he was going to go to the Packers. He used his brilliant mind for player evaluation and how he thought he draft would fall and the rest is History. Ted may have been tempted to move up but trusted his instincts to make the deal. The comparison to Holmgren and early MM is following the path of the
learning tree from Bill Walsh and Paul Hackett to LaFleur and his new OC.

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Packer Fan's picture

September 20, 2019 at 02:09 pm

The offense needs more work. The Vikings DB's played off the line mostly in the first half and played press coverage in the second half and the Packers had difficulty making plays against them. Then mistakes. two fumbles, poor short yardage plays and having Graham pass block a premier pass rusher yielded no points and bad drives. Jones was running well, but the Vikings were taking away the pass. What did seem to work was crossing patterns. They seemed to open up. These errors and some better plays to counter press coverage can go along way to making the offense more successful for the whole game. Question: Have the Packers scored any points in the second half yet?

Defense: We need Gary to play more to get the two Smith's some time off. They just can't keep playing 90% of the plays. And the defense is playing so well. What pleases me is how many QB pressures there has been. And of course, avoid the big plays.

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jannes bjornson's picture

September 20, 2019 at 06:38 pm

Zimmer played cover two and protected his greenhorns at nickel and dime DB with Hughes and Alexander out with injuries. McCarthy ran the quick hitting short game almost religiously until defenses started sitting back and saturating the second level with success as Coughlin did with his Front Four. Zimmer has the same talented Front to bring pressure with Four and not have to bring the blitz as often. LaFluer's group handled the blitz well when Zimmer brougt Smith or Kendricks.

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Since'61's picture

September 20, 2019 at 07:21 pm

Yes, the Packers scored a FG during the 4th quarter against the Bears in Week 1. Thanks, Since ‘61

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murf7777's picture

September 20, 2019 at 02:13 pm

Aaron, have to disagree with you on the 3rd and 1 where Allison doesn't get the first down and you state he has to get that yard. If you go back and look at that play you will notice it wasn't Allison's fault. Allison was tackled by two defenders. The fault falls onto MVS for not blocking one defender. If he just get's in the way of the defender Allison jukes the other defender, makes that 1st down and the drive continues. I can't believe he doesn't even try to block. I love MVS skills, but com'on man! Ok, back to the book on Ron Wolf.....

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PackerAaron's picture

September 20, 2019 at 02:47 pm

Oh I've watched it several times. Totally agree on MVS' lack of blocking - but put your foot in the ground and get upfield once that ball is in your hands.

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jannes bjornson's picture

September 20, 2019 at 06:41 pm

Agree, as a PRO Player, you have to get the yardage and move the chains. Waiting on Shepherd and Lazard to move up in the reps column , soon.

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Bure9620's picture

September 21, 2019 at 02:49 am

Disagree, this was a slant flat concept and with Allison running the flat he is blind to the defender coming downhill at an angle. This is on Aaron Rodgers for throwing the wrong read.

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Samson's picture

September 20, 2019 at 04:17 pm

"give me the Packers in this one, 24-13."
Not bad but you're short 1 TD --- Pack 31 --- Broncos 13.

Elway's horses will leave Lambeau with their tails between their legs... Book it!

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splitpea1's picture

September 20, 2019 at 05:50 pm

So glad this game is in Green Bay, not Denver: no horse whinnying sounds over the speakers!

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CoachJV's picture

September 21, 2019 at 05:47 pm

That's not a horse... it's Elway on the phone... LOL

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Since'61's picture

September 20, 2019 at 07:30 pm

The Broncos have never defeated the Packers in Green Bay.
Packers 28 - 10. Go Pack Go! Thanks, Since ‘61

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3Dogs's picture

September 20, 2019 at 10:33 pm

Packers 35 - 10, Vitale gets a touchdown!!!

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albert999's picture

September 21, 2019 at 12:26 am

This forum and new website is so lame

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albert999's picture

September 21, 2019 at 12:29 am

It’s so dumbed down and so generic

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ShooterMcGee's picture

September 21, 2019 at 03:38 am

I have a question about the offense. In week 1 the offense didn't seem too creative. In week 2 more plays were unvieled. In week 3 I anticipate we see more new formations and play calls. So my question is are new plays being created each week or is it the case that we just haven't seen them? Perhaps the offense has to practice the plays so with repetition they become more ingrained. I look forward each week to seeing the offense evolve . Thanks

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Bearmeat's picture

September 21, 2019 at 10:37 am

Everyone,

Regarding the website: Let's not forget a key component: CHTV is NOT run like a fortune 500 company making money hand over fist. I applaud them for trying something new. Yeah. It's got bugs in it, and I don't care for a couple things either. So what. Give it time.

Remember, this entire blog is run by Packer fans in their free time. Not by people getting a ton of money for their work.

A little kindness and understanding goes a long way.

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Fastenerpuller's picture

September 22, 2019 at 03:14 am

That’s a good point. But why is the ‘reply’ button so huge?

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PatrickGB's picture

September 21, 2019 at 11:19 am

After an adjustment period, I like the new format. Cleaner.
On the topic, I think that the new coaching staff have done their work and it’s new to the players on the line. So it may take a bit of time. GPG

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Samson's picture

September 21, 2019 at 04:08 pm

Bearmeat -- You're correct...... This website & it's ongoing improvements will enter the playoffs (by season's end) just as the Packers will in season 2019. --- Some of the "Debbie Downers" concerning the ongoing transformation on CHTV need to offer up constructive changes instead of just bitching & moaning.

My first cc (constructive change): Shorten your podcasts.---- 40 minutes is too long & an eternity to most of us for many reasons..... Thanks.

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holmesmd's picture

September 22, 2019 at 02:08 pm

This silly little Mighty Mouse back Den has is kind of funny. The defense should be embarrassed. I have no idea how multiple 300lb men can’t just destroy this little man. Instead he looks like Walter Payton. Rodgers looks horrible and are receivers can’t get open. If they are, Rodgers has missed them way too often.

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