Total Packers takes a look at today’s Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings game and offers their predictions.
Monty: Forget about Brett Favre for a second. This game comes down to two things: turnovers and pressure. If the Packers can win the turnover battle and keep Aaron Rodgers off the ground, they’ll win going away.
The Packers have a better defense than the Vikings, who have the added burden of being without their top cover man, Antoine Winfield. The Packers third-ranked defense is much improved from the last time the Vikings came calling. Atari Bigby is back in the lineup, Aaron Kampman is comfortable, and Clay Matthews and Nick Barnett are making plays.
The same goes for the Packers’ offensive line, where Scott Wells and T.J. Lang have outperformed former starters Jason Spitz and Chad Clifton.
The line will give Aaron Rodgers time to throw and with time to throw, Rodgers is a better quarterback than Favre. The Packers’ defense will win the turnover battle. And Brett Favre? Who cares.
Packers 31, Vikings 20
Sarah: Nerves will be a big factor for both teams in the opening minutes of this game. Aaron Rodgers will cool down quickly, but Brett Favre’s emotions are going to get the better of him, whether he wants to admit it or not. Favre will throw at least one pick, maybe fumble a time or two, especially if Green Bay can pressure him. The Packers’ defense should be able to limit Adrian Peterson’s effectiveness again, and the tandem of Ryan Grant and Ahman Green will help the Packers control the clock.
This game is going to come down to penalties and pass protection. Both teams have good defenses, but the Packers NEED to get to Brett Favre this time around and they NEED to keep that hillbilly Jared Allen away from Rodgers, especially in the red zone. Green Bay also needs to play clean and keep the penalties to a minimum. They were very costly in the previous game.
If they can do these things, there’s no reason the Packers shouldn’t win.
Packers 28, Vikings 17
Deanna: Will the return to Lambeau Field be what Brett Favre expects? In Minneapolis, he showed almost no emotion. So I wonder, can he play as well as he did in the Metrodome in, of all places, Lambeau Field? I think not. Favre says he’s been booed before and is prepared, but what about an entire stadium of 72k+ calling for his head? We will see if Favre’s affected.
On the bright side, the Packers are committing fewer penalties and giving up fewer sacks. Aaron Rodgers seems to be getting stronger every week. Rodgers head is in the game and playing at home makes him even cooler. This is the game Rodgers gets the No. 4 monkey off his back once and for all.
The Packers have the momentum going into the game. Farve is going to be more emotional than he has in years. The Packers will protect Rodgers from Jared Allen, let him throw the deep ball and you’ll see magic.
Packers 27, Minnesota 23
MadPacker: Brett Favre is coming home, but he’ll leave with his tail between his legs. I have this feeling that when Favre sees the visceral reaction from Packers fans his gargantuan ego will take a beating like it never has before (and this guy has done a lot of dumb things over the years).
We’ve seen Favre excel under pressure, and we’ve seen him crumble. This time his mixed emotions will get the better of him. He’ll falter early and often with Aaron Kampman relishing the chance to plant him on his back. The Vikings will then put the ball in Adrian Peterson’s hands against eight in the box. Peterson is likely to do more damage than last game, but Dom Capers’ defense will still keep him relatively contained.
Aaron Rodgers, on the other hand, will be perfect on the day, and Ahman Green will even get a goal-line touchdown run just to show Favre what a real Packer does when he returns to Lambeau – make the “true” fans proud.
Packers 35, Vikings 23
Brett: Will Brett Favre be a factor in his homecoming? Absolutely, but it’s unlikely he’ll throw for three touchdowns like he did at the Metrodome. Despite playing inferior competition, the Packers defense has undoubtedly improved over the last two weeks. With the way that Dom Capers keyed in on Adrian Peterson in the last meeting, his boys should be able to make the necessary adjustments to contain Favre just as well. Atari Bigby, who didn’t play in the first game against the Vikings, will make a difference and Aaron Kampman should see more snaps with his hand down, which should equate to more hits on Favre.
On the offensive side of the ball, Vikings cornerback Antoine Winfield’s absence will make it easier for Greg Jennings and Donald Driver to get open downfield and Aaron Rodgers will look to air it out often. That is, if the offensive line can keep him upright. Jared Allen cannot be allowed to log 4 ½ sacks again if the Packers hope to have a chance.
Look for great performances from Jennings on offense and Cullen Jenkins on defense. This one will be a little higher scoring than people expect, but don’t be surprised if some of the points are scored on defense.
Packers 27, Vikings 21