Maybe it does not strike a chord to you, but the Green Bay Packers game this coming Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens should look awfully familiar.
Think about it this way - Joe Flacco simply does not have the receivers to throw to this year. He has one that can be tremendous, but that is about it. Remind you of anyone? Let me just cough subtly while your mind settles on Matthew Stafford.
If anything, Flacco wishes he had the level of consistency Stafford has had this year. I would rather be facing Flacco than Stafford on that team.
Next, the running backs. Reggie Bush is enjoying a resurgent year, not only showing what the New Orleans Saints had hoped for when drafting him second in the 2006 NFL Draft, but also improving in running between the tackles. He had a bit of a down game againsts Green Bay, as the Packers run defense has been a team strength so far this year.
Ray Rice, however, has had a bit of a down year due to injury, but showed he was good to show up Sunday, attempting 27 rushes. Given the talent and age between them, I would still rather face Bush over Rice.
On to the receiving corps. If Calvin Johnson plays, he instantly makes the Lions great. He is that good. Unfortunately for the Lions, he was not good to go and it cost them any chance they had.
In Baltimore the story is a bit different. Torrey Smith is a special player, but he is not the threat Johnson is. He does most of his damage downfield. While he can do some good things, the choice is obvious. Smith over Megatron any day. I would face Torrey Smith in 16 games if I did not have to play Megatron once. We could get into tight ends in this equation, but the truth is neither has a true threat with Dennis Pitta sidelined for the year.
Lastly, the defense. Detroit has a good front four, but the back seven were not all that great. The Ravens do have some good players at their disposal. They have a ferocious pass rush, their linebacking corps is gelling, and the secondary features some playmakers. The bad news for both is their depth. Both teams, especially in the secondary, are missing key depth.
When you look at both teams, the similarity in them at this moment is undeniable. Will the Packers be challenged more visiting Baltimore by the champs?
But I think there is every chance you see a very similar game on Sunday to the one you just witnessed last Sunday against the Lions. There just may not be as wide a margin in the end.