Packers: Five players key to victory in Week 6 vs. Buccaneers

Green Bay Packers, Aaron Rodgers (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Aaron Rodgers (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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Green Bay Packers, Krys Barnes
Green Bay Packers, Krys Barnes (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

2. Krys Barnes

Tom Brady isn’t quite on Drew Brees’ level of check-downs or slants only, but Brady does love the middle of the field and his backs and tight ends.

And with a rookie free agent starting in the middle on Sunday, you can bet Brady is going to target Krys Barnes every chance he gets. Rob Gronkowski, Ronald Jones and LeSean McCoy will all look to take advantage of the Packers’ new man in the middle.

Barnes’ rise from being cut to practice squad player to starting middle linebacker against Tom Brady is a great story. But great stories do not make an NFL career.

Hard work and great play does. What better way to make a name for yourself than against one of the greatest of all time?

Barnes will have his hands full on Sunday. He will handle the communication for the defense as well as his own assignments against some tough players in Gronk, Jones and McCoy. Barnes will also have a big hand in the Packers’ run defense, a weak spot on this team for the past year.

The task will be tall and rookie linebacker Kamal Martin could be back to help ease the load. But Barnes will be the one to handle the bulk of the responsibility. If he can come through in a tough game against an all-time great, it will go a long way in cementing his spot on this team moving forward.