GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) – As the Green Bay Packers (7-2) prepare to visit the Indianapolis Colts (6-3), it’s time to get in the know and ready to go with Dave Schroeder’s ‘Fast 5 Pack Facts.’
#1 True Test: The Packers offense struggled the only time it faced a top-5 defense this year (at Tampa Bay). These Colts have the #1 overall defense in the NFL and should test the efficiency and acumen of Matt LaFleur, Aaron Rodgers, & Company. Beyond owning the top overall defense, the Colts boast the league’s #2 pass defense, #3 run defense, and #4 scoring defense. Aaron Rodgers is great at interception avoidance, but Indianapolis ranks 2nd in the league with 11 INT so far this season.
#2 Healthy Pack: WR Davante Adams is good to go despite his ankle injury. Adams’ ankle had held him out of practice on Thursday. Also given the green light? CBs Jaire Alexander and Kevin King. WR Allen Lazard is questionable coming off IR this week following core muscle surgery. RB/KR/PR Tyler Ervin has been ruled out. For the Colts, team sacks leader DL Denico Autry is on Covid Reserve and out.
#3 Tackling Troubles: The Packers defense wants to prove, once and for all, that it can be a decent tackling team. Green Bay has struggled this year against dual-threat running backs. The Saints’ Alvin Kamara and the Vikings’ Dalvin Cook made the Packers look silly at times. And Indianapolis’ RB Nyhiem Hines is cut from the same cloth with his pass-catching abilities out of the backfield.
Former Badger RB Jonathan Taylor may steal the headlines in this matchup, but watch out for Hines, who leads the Colts’ entire team with 33 catches. He and the Saints’ Kamara are the only 2 backs to lead their respective teams in catches this season.
#4 Fighting Words?: Rodgers is renowned for finding the smallest slight to add a chip on his shoulder. Well, Colts ILB Darius Leonard said, hold those Doritos, watch this! Leonard is taking exception to a *compliment* Rodgers handed out earlier this season. 2 weeks ago, Rodgers marveled that the 49ers’ Fred Warner was the best linebacker in football. Leonard heard those remarks, and said this week he can’t wait to show Rodgers that Leonard is really the best backer. This will the the Colt star’s first meeting against the Pack.
#5 Tricky Opponent: The Packers have not beaten the Colts since 2008, when then first-year starter Aaron Rodgers out-dueled Peyton Manning at Lambeau Field. Indianapolis has won the last 2 meetings. And Green Bay’s last last trip to Indy? Well, it featured the Pack’s biggest 2nd-half collapse in franchise history as GB blew a 21-3 lead.
Prediction: Colts 20, Packers 18
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