Packers Question of the day - Realistic Expectations

For this morning, allow us all to take off the green and gold blinders and ask ourselves this sincere question. 

Can the Packers continue winning out and actually make the playoffs?

A month ago, the Packers were sitting at 4-6 and expectations looked bleak. That was until Aaron Rodgers gave the 2016 version of "R-E-L-A-X" and told reporters that he felt his team can run the table through the final six games. So far, after a convincing win in Seattle that has headlined December thus far, theyr'e halfway there.

Realistically-speaking, if you were a fan of another team and you saw this group in Green Bay beginning to pick up steam for a potential appearance in January, do you think they would actually be capable of winning their final three games flat out and stealing the NFC North crown from the Lions?

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Zachary Jacobson is a staff writer/reporter for Cheesehead TV. He's the voice of The Leap on iTunes and can be heard on The Scoop KLGR 1490 AM every Saturday morning. He's also a contributor on the Pack-A-Day Podcast. He can be found on Twitter via @ZachAJacobson or contacted through email at [email protected].

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Comments (23)

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Bearmeat's picture

December 15, 2016 at 09:21 am

After Seattle? Watching DET the last month? Watching the Vikes the last 2?

Yes. This team can absolutely grab the 4 seed. It's still going to be difficult. Starting with sub-zero weather, and a rivalry game featuring a feisty front 7 on the road on Sunday. But I think it's more than a little likely that the Lions lose 1 of the next 2 weeks - and maybe both.

Now, what will they do in the playoffs? It's daunting for sure IF they get there. It'd probably by NYG at home, then a trip to DAL if they win that, then possibly a trip to SEA if they win that.

Lots of work left to do. Just grind daily.

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halfthemike's picture

December 15, 2016 at 09:53 am

I absolutely think the playoffs are in the future after watching this team come together against the hawks. If they make it any further than the first round, I'd be surprised. I'm a hardcore fan though so I have to believe.

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MarkinMadison's picture

December 15, 2016 at 09:58 am

Stafford has an injured throwing hand. The Vikings offense is feeble. The Bears are the Bears. Yes, they COULD do it.

I don't know how much noise they can make in the play-offs though. Beating DAL in DAL is probably not possible for this team at this point. Beating SEA in GB is one thing, doing it in SEA is another.

My gut is that they stumble in one of the last three games and fall short.

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L's picture

December 15, 2016 at 04:22 pm

Tell you what if they actually run the gauntlet and get into the playoffs they'd have so much momentum and confidence built up I don't know how someone couldn't say they're in position to make some real noise; however, with that said the way they win out in these next 3-games will say a lot too. Do they win in struggling fashion or do they blow-out their opponents and perhaps most importantly can they avoid anymore serious injuries to vital team members?

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4zone's picture

December 15, 2016 at 10:08 am

Pack definitely can win out. I fully expect the Lions to lose this coming week in NY. That equals the NFC North Division Title.

It's definitely going to be a tough 3 week stretch, no one is going to lie down and roll over for us but in a way, that's a good thing. Builds a thicker skin, which will be needed if we expect to do anything after week 17.

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Tundraboy's picture

December 16, 2016 at 07:28 am

My thoughts exactly. If they win the next three in a row, they will be as hot and tough as any team. Go from there.

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Portland Mark's picture

December 15, 2016 at 10:15 am

If their defense keeps holding teams to under 13 points a game they can go all the way. In 2010 they had to win 7 in a row to win the SB. If you consider what they did they next year, they ran off 20 wins in a row. This team would have to win 10 in a row to win the SB. If one else gets hurt and they get some players back healthy of course they can do it.

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Since'61's picture

December 15, 2016 at 10:29 am

Realistically speaking, if I were a fan of another team I would seriously consider the Packers capable of going 10-6 and reaching the playoffs. Why? 1. They have Aaron Rodgers who even injured is playing better than he has all season. 2. The defense has been solid for 3 consecutive weeks and 3. They found a semblance of a running game over the last few weeks. The Packers are about as complete of a team as they can be right now. If Rodgers gets his mobility back he can kill opponents with his legs. Also, they have been here before. They have as good a shot as the Lions, Vikings, Bucs, Falcons, Giants, Redskins, et.al. And realistically, because of Rodgers they are probably better than all of those teams. They cannot afford to lose a game though and this week's game against Chicago is not only a rivalry game it's the Super Bowl for the Bears this season. I'm sure they would prefer nothing more than to ruin the Packer's run for the playoffs. However, once again, if the Packers don't beat themselves, they have too much talent for the Bears to keep up with. Go Pack Go! Thanks, Since '61

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Finwiz's picture

December 15, 2016 at 10:45 am

That's a big stretch Since '61, to think they are a complete team now because they found a wideout as a RB. If Lacy were healthy, Rodgers had no nagging injuries, and they had Martinez and Shields I'd be more inclined to believe the last couple of weeks of defensive performance were something more than an aberration.
I think this team can slip in any one of the next 3 games, including Chicago. Wilson was uncharacteristically bad last week, missing 2 wide open receivers for probable TD's. If he hits Graham who was wide open behind the blown coverage in the secondary it's 10-7 at that point, instead of 7-3. Normally Wilson makes that play. He had receivers dropping passes left and right, and 3 of those INT's were on the receivers. People are getting caught up in 3 straight wins, but this is a tougher hill to climb than it appears on paper. I could just as easily see them go 1-2 as 3-0 in these games. The Bears have no pressure, and the Packers have major pressure to win out. I haven't seen evidence of the Packers performing well under "must-win" circumstances.

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Since'61's picture

December 15, 2016 at 04:42 pm

Ok so you don't think a 38-10 win against Seattle is performing well under "must-win" circumstances. That's fine. Define your criteria for playing well in must win circumstances. You say that if Wilson hit Graham it was a TD and a 10-7 lead. What exactly did you see from Seattle that would have prevented the Packers from scoring 38 points? The Seachickens defense was on the field for every Packer score. They were unable to stop the Packers on either long drives or from within their red zone. Maybe your hero Wilson was off because of the Packers pass rush and coverage. How come the great Seattle defense couldn't stop an injured Aaron Rodgers missing Eddie Lacy? Maybe it was because the Packers won the LOS on both sides of the ball and beat Seattle like a drum for the entire game. Maybe you watched a different game or you had a different view from where you watched the game. I don't know what's going to happen over the next 3 games but based on the question posed by the article I am realistically confident that the Packers can make a run and I have my reasons. Thanks, Since '61

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Nick Perry's picture

December 16, 2016 at 07:16 am

I think the Packers have been in "Must Win" mode for the last 3 weeks, that's not changing the next 3 weeks either.

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pacman's picture

December 15, 2016 at 10:56 am

Before Seattle, it was unlikely. With Stafford's injured hand, I would say it is very reasonable.

How far they go in the playoffs? There's the rub. While it might feel good to make a run, I don't see a SB as a reasonable chance yet. So is any of this worth it over a hoping for a much better draft pick? It would mean the MM gets to claim another year of making it to the playoffs and getting off the hot seat. I'm not interested in that run anymore.

SB or bust!

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Tundraboy's picture

December 16, 2016 at 07:51 am

That's the dilemma. I would like the higher pick, because they really need them next year, and not a big MM anymore, but if they win three in a row and are primed for a run what the hell. Even shorthanded they can take care of NY and at least have a great shot at knocking off Dallas and Seattle on the road. If they lost fighting at the end it will have been a remarkable end to the season given all that's happened and that is better than a one and done any time. SB or bust. Never ever thought I would have said THAT this YEAR.

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stockholder's picture

December 15, 2016 at 11:02 am

My realistic Expectations are that the packers need to expect more dirty plays from the remaining teams. Seattle was the start of below the belt hits. Not to mention blind side hits. The NFL is tired of the packers making the playoffs. Hate is now the word that can be used. Expect the calls from the officials to favor the challenger. The packers must prove they are the better team in the last 3 games. Don't look for any christmas presents. The packers must be careful not to loose their vision of winning the game. Show discipline and earn it.

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PETER MAIZ's picture

December 15, 2016 at 12:33 pm

The Polar weather will be a likely factor for both teams come Chicago. There are those that are pessimistic pulling this one off. If the Packers can get away early on, the game will be in their back pocket.
With weather conditions not helping, it may be a lot of dink and dunk and Montgomery's running to keep that ball rolling into long drives. For this Sunday, Aaron won't be able to scramble or run the ball.

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Razer's picture

December 15, 2016 at 12:56 pm

For much of the season this team under-performed. With the offense waking up, we now have a chance to run the table. Despite the record, the division is right in front of us. Yes, we need Detroit to lose to either NYG or Dallas, but all our remaining games are in the division and they are all winnable. If there was ever a "you're telling me there's a chance" moment, this is it.

I doubt any playoff contender wants the Packers after witnessing the Seattle smackdown. I want to see our run game come to life in Chicago - it is the last piece of this team.

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croatpackfan's picture

December 15, 2016 at 02:30 pm

I say Packers can win it all if they beat Bears. It will be the hardest game of 3...

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TommyG's picture

December 15, 2016 at 06:59 pm

I think as an outsider I would be looking forward to the run which green bay will go on in order to try to win the division. But as this fan I see this as being too late in the season. I think the pack loses one of the next three despite a valiant effort.

Detroit has a two game lead. Will they drop 2 of the next three? No.

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4thand1's picture

December 15, 2016 at 07:02 pm

After watching the 4 game skid I was down on this team like everyone else. They under preformed at every level. The biggest thing was losing so many in the secondary. I never seen so many wide open receivers and blown coverages in my life. Its now or never for Peppers, he has to play his ass off the rest of the way and make an impact. They should be able to run the table, and I think they will IF they take care of business in Chicago. GOPACKGO.
ps, Hows Adams looking cowpie? I told you so,lol.

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Flow49's picture

December 15, 2016 at 07:03 pm

I live in Dallas and spend a majority of my work day in the car. I listen to a lot of sports radio throughout the day. The sports guys here in Dallas want nothing to do with seeing this Packers team on a roll in the playoffs. That being said there is a long way to go and they need to take it one game at a time.

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TommyG's picture

December 15, 2016 at 07:39 pm

I used to live in the Seattle area. I was always listening to local football talk because I wanted to hear what others thought of our team. It is good when talk shows in other cities say that they want no part of our team.

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Handsback's picture

December 15, 2016 at 07:55 pm

Flow49 was that the ticket? I've heard them say before if Rodgers got hot the Pack would be tough to beat.

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Flow49's picture

December 16, 2016 at 06:31 am

Yeah, basically everyone from the musers to the hardline had something similar to say. Most of them would rather play the Falcons.

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