Packers: Week 1 game at Vikings a great opportunity to start strong

Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

The Packers have a great opportunity in Week 1.

To kick off the 2019 season, the Green Bay Packers went to Soldier Field and defeated the NFC North champions.

It was a statement victory for the revamped Packers and a crucial road victory inside the division. That’s the currency you need to make the playoffs.

Opening up the season against the Minnesota Vikings this year, Matt LaFleur’s team has the chance to make the most of a similar opportunity.

Packers found the winning formula last season

Once Green Bay got out of its own way, it cruised to victory at U.S. Bank Stadium last December. The defense shut down Minnesota’s offense, sacking Kirk Cousins five times and restricting the Vikings to just 139 total yards.

Aaron Jones put up more yards than that by himself, capping off his excellent performance with a 56-yard touchdown that took the game out of the Vikings’ reach.

Previously, the Packers had never won at U.S. Bank Stadium. Last season, they showed how to do it.

No fans in U.S. Bank Stadium?

The regular season is still months away and it’s close to impossible to predict where we’ll be in September. But due to the coronavirus pandemic, there’s a strong possibility that games will be played without fans, at least early in the season.

Not only would this make for an unusual season with a lack of atmosphere in the stands, but it would also have a significant impact on the games themselves. Without crowd noise, there would be no advantage to the home team when it comes to communication. And that could prove to be significant.

Of course, let’s hope things improve quickly and that it’s safe for fans to be able to fill up stadiums as soon as possible. But safety comes first, and it seems unlikely to happen for many months yet and this could have a huge impact on this divisional game.