It’s has been a long time since there has been such an important game in just the sixth week of the regular season.
Quite simply the Packers are desperate, and if they are going to turn things around, it has to start this Sunday night at Houston.
History is on our side
They say history is the future’s best indicator, and that’s a good thing for us. The Packers have shown a great ability to bounce back during the McCarthy era. Since 2009, the Packers are 11-3 after a loss (one of those loses was without Rodgers). Rodgers has also played well against a Wade Phillips-coached defense. His QB rating against Phillips is 111.5 and he’s never thrown an interception.
The Texans have feasted on cupcakes
The Texans have not had a hard road to 5-0. Their opponents have a combined record is 9-17. The only decent QB they have faced was Peyton Manning, and he threw for 330 yards and two touchdowns against them. While there is something to be said for beating the teams you are supposed to, it’s fair to say Green Bay’s road had been much tougher.
Vegas says it’s closer then people think
It seems like everywhere you turn someone is talking about how easy of a game this will be for the Texans. At the end of the day it’s all talk. The people that put their money where their mouth is think differently. The lines makers have the line at 3 points. As a former gambler (former means I lost a lot) let me tell you what this means. They see these two teams as relatively equal with a slight edge going to Houston because they are at home.
The Cushing Factor
As we all know the Texans will be without Brian Cushing. He was the heart of their defense, their leader, and maybe their best player, it’s a huge loss. While some defenses can lose a good player and not skip a beat, most seem to experience at least a temporary dropoff, and some are never the same again.
The Packers D
The Packers have a hard time against any decent QB not named Jay Cutler. Matt Schaub has a passer rating of 99.2 which makes him the second highest rated QB the Packers have faced. Also the Texans rushing attack is 7th in the league with 143 yards per game. The last team that was able to do both things so well (the 49ers) had a field day against the Packers.
Stats don’t lie
On paper this appears one-sided statistically. Houston scores 7.5 more points a game then the Packers, and they give up 7.6 points less.The Texans D is ranked fifth, while the Packers are 22nd (and falling). The turnover margin also favors Houston (+8 to -1). In fact, Houston leads Green bay in just about every major team statistic.
It’s at Houston
This year’s Packers have yet to prove they can win on the road, while the Texans are 9-2 at home (including playoffs) their last 11 games, so they have played very well there lately.
The Bottom Line: Houston has been impressive this year and seem to have no real weakness. However, Green Bay may be the best team they have had to play so far and they will be desperate, angry, and motivated. I fully expect the Packers to be right there until the end.