Packers Periscope: Week 11 vs Indianapolis Colts

The Green Bay Packers are going to face one of their toughest tests to date on Sunday when they travel to play the Indianapolis Colts.  It will be the 46th meeting between two of the NFL’s most historic franchises. Dating back to the days of Baltimore Colts, they trail in the all-time series 23-21-1, including one playoff game. In five games at the Colts, they have yet to win. If the Packers want to emerge victoriously and get within one game of tying the all-time series, they have to bring their A-game. Indianapolis, 6-3, is a tough football team with one of the league’s best defenses accompanied by a crafty offense.

This will be Green Bay’s third game against an AFC South opponent this season. So far, the Packers have swept the series, but they have yet to face the best of the division. The Colts currently own the tiebreaker over the Tennessee Titans. Green Bay is scheduled to take on Tennessee in week 16.

Recent history tells us Sunday’s matchup will be a close bout. The last two games between the Packers and Colts have been decided by a combined eight points, with Indianapolis winning both contests. The last time these two teams met was in week nine of 2016.

A timeless Frank Gore rushed for two touchdowns to help the Colts score 31 points. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers' offense produced over 400 yards of offense, but the defense couldn’t make timely stops at the end despite picking off Andrew Luck twice.

Of course, Luck is now retired, and Indianapolis is headed in a totally different direction.

In a lot of ways, this Colts team is reminiscent of last year’s San Francisco 49ers team. The 49ers had the second-best defense in the NFL, and Indianapolis is currently first.  San Francisco was limited by their offense but had enough talent to get the job done. Led by quarterback Philip Rivers, the Colts are more than capable of putting up points.

This is the same Rivers that threw for 294 yards and completed 75 percent of his passes last year against Green Bay when the Los Angeles Chargers trampled the Packers 26 to 11. Even at 38 years of age, Rivers is still a highly capable quarterback. In 2020, he’s completing close to 69 percent of his passes for 2,395 yards.

While the main focus will be on how Aaron Rodgers and the Packers' offense handle a top-ranked Indianapolis defense, Mike Pettine has his work cut out for him against a quarterback that has had success against him. Green Bay’s defense will also need to have an answer for a young backfield consisting of rookie Jonathan Taylor and the versatile Nyheim Hines.

Meanwhile, the Packers' offense needs to show they can perform against a stout defense. We saw how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers hit them in the mouth in week six, and the Indianapolis defense is just as good, if not better.

Wide receiver Davante Adams was held out of practice two practices this week with an ankle injury despite finishing last week’s game while hobbled. He returned Friday, and head coach Matt LaFleur said he should be good to go. It could be that they are being cautious with Adams. The offesne could have Allen Lazard back after he was activated off injured reserve on Tuesday. Adams and Lazard haven’t been on the field together since week two.

This is very much a prove-it game for Green Bay. They need another signature win to show they are deserving of the top seed in the NFC and a legitimate threat for the Super Bowl. Right now, they hold the tiebreaker over the New Orleans Saints. Meanwhile, the Colts want to hold onto their lead in the AFC South and keep their momentum going from last week’s convincing win over the Titans.



Brandon Carwile is a Packers writer who also enjoys watching and breaking down film. Follow him on Twitter @PackerScribe.

2 points

Comments (10)

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BBlake's picture

November 20, 2020 at 04:25 pm

IMO, the toughest team wins. Soft doesn't win games like this.

5 points
arthurl's picture

November 20, 2020 at 05:16 pm

I feel it will be on the OL; can they hold up and protect Rodgers. The Bucs got after #12 and that was all she wrote. If the offense can function then they stand a good chance coming out with the W. The Colts do not have a prolific offense like the Chiefs and probably Steelers this season. The Packer defense will get run on mainly because their DL is below average. I don’t see see the Colts over powering them on offense though they have the better unit compared to Packers defense. They will score some points on that defense.

2 points
jeremyjjbrown's picture

November 20, 2020 at 06:18 pm

LaFleur needs to scheme to beat the shell too. They haven't done very well when there are well disguised coverages and pressure. But then again, not many teams do.

2 points
jannes bjornson's picture

November 22, 2020 at 02:26 pm

No valid #2 WR to press the coverage.

0 points
Lphill's picture

November 20, 2020 at 06:58 pm

The colts beat one team with a winning record, Rivers has 11 TD , 7 INT, Rodgers 26 and 3 , D Adams is playing , the Packers just have to score and they can win. I think Packers defense puts in a solid performance to silence the critics.

1 points
Leatherhead's picture

November 20, 2020 at 07:18 pm

I don’t think we’re going 14-2. We’re not going to win all seven remaining games. This looks like a hard one.

I’ve sung the praises of our offense a lot. It would be nice to see us move the ball and score points against a good defensive team.

4 points
ricky's picture

November 20, 2020 at 10:52 pm

Watching news conference with LaFleur and Rodgers, they both seemed relaxed and confident. It's as if they've seen something in the film room they can use to their advantage. What worries me more is whether Pettine can come up with a plan to stop the run and the short passing game the Colts thrive on. Because if he's going to go with three rushing, and dropping back to prevent long passes, it could be a looong afternoon.

3 points
Fabio's picture

November 21, 2020 at 11:15 am

I think it will be a low-scoring game (for us). If we can keep it in balance we can have a chance. Much depends on Pettine. Greetings to all GB fans from Italy

0 points
PatrickGB's picture

November 21, 2020 at 11:46 am

The Colts are down one key defender and we are up one key player on offense. I predict a tie.

0 points
porupack's picture

November 22, 2020 at 05:47 am

No way packers can win with Pettine's play-not to lose approach. The D has to charge up some batteries, or inject caffeine, or whatever it takes to not "play flat" and to "play with energy". Rally to the ball, hit hard and set a tone like.....who, the Jax bottom dwelllers....who could certainly look like a top tier D. If they could, Pettine can. Pettine has to take some risk early and set a tone.

0 points