The 5-4 Green Bay Packers go into MetLife Stadium today to face the 3-6 New York Giants in a game that will be of great importance in determining which teams will be eligible for the Playoffs come January.
The Giants, riding the wave of a three-game winning streak, will play a Packers team in disarray. Injuries, namely one to their best player, Aaron Rodgers, have left this team struggling for a new identity under Scott Tolzien, their third string QB, and a reeling defense that has lost any semblance of its look from the first half of the season.
Which team will prevail?
Well, here are the predictions from staff members here at Lombardiave. Do you agree? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below, Liking us on our Facebook page, or following us on Twitter.
Darryl Krejci: This is it, the entire season, possibly the fate of the known Packers universe hangs in the balance as the Packers take on the Giants. Like Y2K and the Mayan Prediction, only time will provide us with the truth! But can we handle the truth? Will football Armageddon rise and destroy the hopes and dreams of the Packers Nation? Will we be forced to endure a season no better than that of the Vikings?
Behold our fate as it lies in the hands of a Badger. The day of reckoning is upon us.
Will this be the final chapter for Dom Capers? Will the defense rise to the top or will it crumble like a defensive back with a bad hammy? What awaits the Pack as they enter Gotham? Will they be David or will they be slayed? In the end, sadly, I must say that by the time the final second clicks off the clock, the Packers will be doomed to a season of lost dreams. For there will be no playoffs or Super Bowl this year after the Giants win.
Packers 24 Giants 13
Dan Dahlke: The Packers face a Giants team that is coming off a three-game winning streak. This will be a tough one for Green Bay on the road. I think Tolzien will play better, and I also don’t think the defense will have a meltdown for a third week in a row. I look for turnovers to be the key to this game. The Giants are dead last in turnover ratio. I’m taking the Packers over the Giants in an ugly victory on the road.
Packers 24 Giants 21
Tom Marquardt: The Packers’ defense steps up, Eli Manning throws four INTs (Packers only catch two), Scott Tolzien manages a good game (14/21/1) and Lacy and Starks combine for 225 yards rushing.
Packers 24 Giants 17
Kevin Gibson: What is it about playing the Packers the last couple of seasons that has made Eli Manning look like his big brother? It could be because Green Bay’s pass defense has been absolutely terrible in both contests. I fear the worst come Sunday when the Packers travel to the Meadowlands. The Giants are 3-6 but are on the upswing while the Packers are 5-4 and on a decided downswing, with Aaron Rodgers, Randall Cobb and Jermichael Finley gone from the offense and Clay Matthews, Casey Hayward and others banged up on defense.
I see a solid start ahead for Scott Tolzien and another sloppy effort from the Green Bay defense en route to a potential season-killing loss.
Giants 26 Packers 20
Eric Balkman: It’s amazing how one injury can shift the entire outlook of a team’s season. Sure, the Packers had to deal with injuries to Seneca Wallace, Eddie Lacy, James Starks, Randall Cobb, James Jones, Jermichael Finley, Bryan Bulaga, Evan Dietrich-Smith, Derek Sherrod, Datone Jones, Clay Matthews, Brad Jones, Nick Perry and Casey Hayward (among others), but it is Aaron Rodgers’ injury that has turned Green Bay into a suddenly below average football team.
Consider the fact that Green Bay went to 11-point favorites against the Eagles last week to one-point UNDERDOGS with just Rodgers’ injury being the catalyst. This speaks to general manger Ted Thompson‘s inability to put together a deep football team (or just at quarterback) or the fact that Green Bay has been among the most beat up in the league (and have been for years – at what point do trainers and strength and conditioning coaches start taking some blame here?).
Green Bay is no longer a good football team until Rodgers gets back. Third-string quarterbacks who are just signed off the practice squad mid-season almost never lead their teams to road victories, even against the lowly Giants. I expect Andre Brown to gut the Packers defense and Scott Tolzien to underwhelm and commit one turnover too many. Rodgers needs to get back fast for hope of a Wild Card.
Giants 23 Packers 17
Tom Mrozla: This game will involve two teams that are going in opposite directions. The New York Giants are starting to somewhat find themselves and the Green Bay Packers are struggling without Aaron Rodgers at quarterback. The Giants defense has surrendered just 13 points in three weeks placing the Packers as five-point underdogs by Vegas. The Giants also commit a lot of turnovers so something has to give with the Packers defense, which can’t force a turnover to save its life.
The Packer defense NEEDS to get off the field on third downs. They do that and the game is winnable. Tolzien needs to be sharp because Lacy won’t be able to do it all on offense. I hope I’m wrong, but the past two weeks I haven’t seen a Packers team that wants to win. Did I mention I hope I’m wrong? Giants win.
Giants 27 Packers 17
David Burdette: This game is gonna be a doozy.
Two teams on the brink of a playoff run. The Giants welcome Green Bay to town with three wins in a row. However, New York has not looked extremely impressive. Eli Manning has been off most of the year, the offensive line is offensive, and the defense has been out of sorts.
The Packers, on the other hand, have been the victims of four words – Aaron Rodgers is out. Because of this, the team has not been playing well, and the defense seems like it has quit.
This game will really come down to who can put up a fight. I think Tolzien getting a week of practice with the offense gives him the edge.
Packers 24 Giants 20
Evan Kenney: Will Scott Tolzien prove himself worthy as the backup when Rodgers returns? We can only hope. I believe he can and will. I am nervous for our pass defense, as Eli Manning as always had his way with us. Jarrett Boykin continues his rise, and Eddie Lacy yet again dominates the run game, giving the Pack a much-needed win.
Packers 24 Giants 21
Kevin Dickens: Must win. MUST win. MUST WIN.Mike McCarthy should have had that message plastered anywhere and everywhere for every player in that locker room. This game will determine the rest of the season for the Packers. I’m just hoping the Packers can make it the entire game without an injury. That would be a victory in itself.
Looking at offense, the Packers have many options to use at their disposal. The Giants gave up 4.4 yards per carry to backup running back Rashad Jennings of Oakland last week. Establishing the potent threat of Eddie Lacy and James Starks will help Tolzien build upon last week’s impressive outing. He needs to be more polished avoiding any costly mistakes to get a victory against a stout Giants defense.
The Packers must win the turnover battle. That means they have to get turnovers! Looking at the sparseness in which the defense hasn’t gotten many of those, Eli Manning has provided plenty. The Packers will also need to use the strategy the Giants have employed lately against them. They ran Andre Brown 30 times against the Raiders more than likely to keep Eli from throwing picks. The Pack must stop the run and force Eli to make bad decisions as he has all year.
Packers 20 Giants 17
Patrick Hughes: Scott Tolzien does what he needs to do to get the job done, not flashy but moves the chains and enables the Pack to get in the end zone. Dom Capers finally outdoes Tom Coughlin. It’s a nail biter, but what else would you expect? Brandon Bostick gets another touchdown. Clay Matthews forces Eli Manning into an interception.
Packers 24 Giants 17
Luke Hanish: Just who are the Giants this year? Far from who they were projected to be, for starters. Their defense is far from what it used to be and the questionable status of Jason Pierre-Paul could determine just what defense shows up to play. With Scott Tolzein at the helm it’s hard to say just exactly what we’ll get out of the offense. A once reeling Giants squad has suddenly won a few games and consider themselves fortunate to be facing the pack minus Aaron Rodgers. At the rate injuries have been occurring, Eddie Lacy could be the last man standing once all is said and done. Here’s to hoping he runs over a few Giants on the way to the end zone.
Packers 27 Giants 23
Ray Rivard: We all know the Giants have won three in a row. Granted, those wins have come against the hapless Vikings, the Eagles led by a guy by the name of Barkley, and the Oakland Raiders. That’s not overwhelming competition.
But this game isn’t about the New York Giants. Yes, they are favored at home, but this game comes down to the Green Bay defense. For some reason, I just don’t have a whole heck of a lot of confidence in that group. They’ve lost the edge they had earlier in the season, they have no fire, no desire. That will be the difference in this one. Eli Manning, as bad as he’s been this season, will kill the Packers once again, while Scott Tolzien will do well – just not well enough to overcome the pathetic defense.
I don’t pick against the Packers often, but this is different. This is a team in disarray and it will be even more evident today. I can only hope that I am wrong.
Giants 20 Packers 17