Previewing the Green Bay Packers’ Week 10 showdown with the Carolina Panthers.
The Green Bay Packers had a week to forget when they took a 26-11 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers. The offense never got going as they totaled 184 yards with 45 on the ground and 139 through the air and the defense was getting picked apart.
This Sunday, the Packers look to bounce back as they host the 5-3 Carolina Panthers. The Packers are 9-6 in the all-time series against the Panthers but have lost the last two matchups. The matchup in 2017 was Aaron Rodgers’ first game back since his collarbone injury, but before Rodgers could mount a comeback, Geronimo Allison fumbled and gave the Panthers a 31-24 victory.
Now, the Panthers are the ones with a banged-up quarterback as Cam Newton has been placed on the IR due to a foot injury, ending his season. Running the offense is second-year quarterback Kyle Allen who’s keeping the Panthers season afloat but doesn’t have the attention-grabbing stats with nine touchdowns, four interceptions for 1,291 yards.
The real threat is Christian McCaffrey as he’s putting up a stellar case for MVP. Besides for the week two matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, McCaffrey has scored a touchdown in every game. McCaffrey is second in rushing yards (881) only behind Dalvin Cook (894), but is the leader in all-purpose yards (1,244) and has 13 total touchdowns.
The Packers will have their focus on the Panthers running back, especially since they have given up the eighth-most rushing yards per game (127.7) and are tied for third in giving up rushing touchdowns (10) while the Panthers offense averages 132.9 rushing yards per game.
After getting picked apart by the Chargers, the Packers secondary might get a chance to relax as the Panthers average 206.9 yards through the air, so defensive coordinator Mike Pettine would rather have Allen beat them instead of McCaffrey.
This week for the Packers, they must get their running game going. The Panthers give up 133.4 yards per game on the ground, so this week we shouldn’t see a 45-yard performance from Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams. Through the air, that’s where the Panthers defense thrives as they have given up 227 yards a game to opposing offenses. If the Packers can get their running game going, the passing game should follow.
Last week was embarrassing and the players know it, but that game against the Chargers shouldn’t define the Packers’ season. Although, this week will define it. Can the Packers rebound and get themselves back in the win column after getting manhandled, or is there a real concern for the team? We should have that answer after a cold and windy day at Lambeau Field.