Packers Periscope: Week 14 vs Detroit Lions

The Packers have a chance at the regular-season sweep against the Lions in week 14. 

The Green Bay Packers are back on the road this week as they are set to face the Detroit Lions. In Green Bay’s last four out of five trips to Detroit, the games have been decided by single digits. Will the Packers put their foot down and deliver a convincing win? Or will the Lions keep this one close yet again? We’ll have to wait and see this Sunday.

Following a mundane performance on Thanksgiving against the Houston Texans, Detroit fired head coach Matt Patricia. Green Bay was 3-2 against the Lions with Patricia at the helm, including three straight wins.

The Packers are 102-72-7 all-time against Detroit, including two playoff meetings. Their 102 victories are the most against any team in the NFL. Green bay swept the regular-season series in 2019 and have a chance for a repeat. In week two of this season, The Packers posted 42 points in a 21-point win over the Lions. Aaron Rodgers threw for 240 yards and two touchdowns, but it was Aaron Jones who was the standout on offense. Jones rushed for 168 yards on 18 carries for 9.3 yards per carry and also added two touchdowns.

Jones’ 168 yards is the most he has had in 2020, and the team’s total of 259 yards in week two is also a season-high. A strong rushing attack will be crucial.

In their first meeting, Green Bay’s defense had a strong performance against Matt Stafford and company, allowing just 307 yards of total offense. They sacked Stafford four different times and picked him off once. The Packers are coming off a seven-sack performance against Philadelphia Eagles.

After parting ways with Patricia, Detroit named offensive coordinator Darren Bevell the interim head coach. The Lions looked inspired last week against the Chicago Bears, delivering to Bevell his first win as an NFL head coach. Detroit scored 34 points but also surrendered 30 to an offense led by Mitch Trubisky.

Chicago also rushed for 140 yards and three touchdowns despite being ranked 31st in the league in rushing offense. Presumably, Jones and Jamaal Williams are in store for big outings against the Lions defense.

Rodgers will aim to have another strong performance to strengthen his argument for league MVP. The way he has been connecting with Davante Adams lately, it doesn’t appear anything can slow them down.

Before last week’s game against the Eagles, defensive coordinator Mike Pettine was visited by leaders on his defense, asking him to be more aggressive. The feedback paid off as the defense had their highest sack total on the year and also came away with an interception for the fifth straight week.

This game won’t mean much outside of pride for Detroit, seeing that their playoff hopes are just about over. Meanwhile, the Packers cannot afford to drop a game down the stretch. They are currently one game back from the New Orleans Saints; however, Green Bay does hold the tiebreaker. The Saints have Philadelphia this week, so this may not be the time for the Packers to capture the number one seed in the NFC.

 

 

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

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Comments (11)

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Lphill's picture

December 11, 2020 at 03:46 pm

Yes Brandon the Packers have to keep their foot on the pedal from here on out, the Bears had some good numbers against the Lions and may have won if not for the late strip sack on Trubisky that set up the winning score.

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PackfanNY's picture

December 11, 2020 at 07:21 pm

By 4:20 on Sunday I expect that the Vikings will have already lost. A win against the Lions and we clinch the division. Packers need to show a little killer instinct here and put the Lions, Vikings and Bears out of there misery. Need to get it done.

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Leatherhead's picture

December 11, 2020 at 09:56 pm

The first awareness I ever had about the Lions was the infamous 62 Thanksgiving game. I was just a kid but my Dad and older brother were really mad that we weren’t blocking for Bart. Most of my life, they haven’t been worth a fart in the wind, but I remember my Dad telling me they had been good back in the day.

My attitude is “if you can’t beat the Lions, you’ve got problems”. They do stupid stuff AND they are snakebit. From Dempseys field goal to the Hail Mary and more, these guys consistently find new ways to fail. I’m thankful they’re in our division. If I had bet against the Lions every game in my life, I’d have a nice pile of money.

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Ferrari-Driver's picture

December 12, 2020 at 12:22 am

Leatherhead, I still remember some of that game and IMO it was one of the more disappointing performances of the Packers. Bart Starr is my all time favorite player and person among football players and he must have been sacked about 10 times during that game and we were shut out in the first half and behind by 20 or more points. In fact it was shortly after that that Lombardi cancelled the annual Thanksgiving games which had been going on for decades. The Lions just played better on those Thanksgiving games and had more wins than one would have expected. While I missed seeing the Packers play the Lions every Thanksgiving day over the latter years, I do think Lombardi's decision gave the Packers a better chance for a more wins against the Lions.

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Bure9620's picture

December 12, 2020 at 07:03 am

The Lions have a lot of problems, but I fully expect them to play well against the Packers as they always do. This is a game they get up for, this is essentially their Super Bowl. I also expect the Lions to play hard for Bevell. The Packers need to come out fast and stomp this team so they lose their will.

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blacke00's picture

December 12, 2020 at 07:32 am

As had been said before this is the Lions "Super Bowl". The Lions always play the Packers tough in Detroit and the Packers always seem to come up flat. This would be a good year to change all that.

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PatrickGB's picture

December 12, 2020 at 12:00 pm

I think that Brandon may have misquoted the players who visited Pettine. I think that the request was for the defense to be simple, not “more aggressive”. But, who knows, the results and intentions may be the same.

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Leatherhead's picture

December 12, 2020 at 12:10 pm

I think a lot of people don’t know what goes on with a team . Players talk, during practice and away from the field. But they all understand they have to be on the same page. Sometimes, you present a well reasoned rationale and the coach listens.

During the season, you try different things and some things work better than others and I’d bet the players were letting Pettine know what they thought. There was probably a lot of agreement and a few points of difference,.

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PatrickGB's picture

December 12, 2020 at 12:02 pm

Double Post

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JohnnyLogan's picture

December 12, 2020 at 01:04 pm

We've been saying the real test for the Packer D won't come until week 16 against the Titans. Not so fast Kowalski! The Lions scored 34 against the Bears, arguably a better D than ours. We'll score over 30 as usual, but if Savage doesn't play, to go along with losing Raven Greene, who is going to stop the Lion offense? They're getting their great rookie RB D'Andre Swift back, and while they've lost Golladay, Marvin Jones has been killing it over the middle the last few games. We're weak against the run and can't protect the middle, both are Lion offensive tendencies. Stafford will throw over 40 times. This game, not the Titan game, is the first big test for our D. If Pettine plays his usual prevent, Stafford will carve us up. This is a big test for LaFleur to prove he can coach defense as well as offense and be a complete coach. I'm picking the Packers, but if the Lions manage to score over 30, I have a feeling there will be some major changes in our defensive scheme come the playoffs.

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Upnorth's picture

December 12, 2020 at 07:40 pm

I tend to disagree with you. While the Lions have some pieces, the Titans will be the real test. Tannehill might not be as gifted as Stafford, but he’s got 2 top 20 receivers, and arguably the best running back in the game.

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