The game of the week in the NFC pits two of the league’s best offenses against one another in the controlled elements of the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
In this post I break down this pivotal matchup between the Green Bay Packers and Atlanta Falcons and offer a prediction for what will transpire on Sunday.
Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons Game Info
- Packers-Falcons Date: Sunday, November 28
- Packers-Falcons Kickoff Time: 1:00 pm
- Packers-Falcons TV Network: FOX
- Packers-Falcons Announcers: Thom Brennaman and Brian Billick
- Packers-Falcons Spread: Falcons -1
- Packers-Falcons Over-Under: 47.5
Both teams are playing great football and are heading towards winning their divisions.
Atlanta is 8-2 and has a one game lead over the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints and the surprising Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC South. They are winners of 7 of their last 8 games coming off a win against the Rams 34-17.
The Packers are tied with the Chicago Bears at 7-3 in the NFC North and have won 4 games in a row out scoring the opposition 113 to 34 in those 4 games. This game could be a preview of a playoff game with the winner getting home field advantage if they are to meet again.
Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons: Offense
Atlanta comes into the week 12 matchup with the NFC’s 4th ranked offense, averaging just over 371 yards a game, 242 through the air. Green Bay is ranked 6th at just over 347 yards a game, 247 through the air.
Matt Ryan is in his third year out of Boston College and has thrown 18 TD’s and only 5 INT’s. He has been sacked 15 times, and has escaped the pocket 30 times for 82 yards. Aaron Rodgers is in his sixth season out of California and has thrown 19 TD’s and 9 INT’s. He has been sacked 20 times and is more elusive, escaping the pocket 37 times for 194 yards and scoring 3 touchdowns. Both quarterbacks have ratings over 92, Aaron Rodgers at 95.7 and Matt Ryan at 92.9.
Both teams have great receiving cores with explosive after-the–catch abilities. The Falcons Roddy White leads the NFL with 1,017 yards receiving and 7 TD’s, while Green Bay has Greg Jennings is leading the team with 703 yards and 9 TD’s. Atlanta got Michael Jenkins back in week six, and Tony Gonzalez is having another good season. Green Bay has a deeper receiving core with veteran Donald Driver leading a young group comprised of James Jones, Jordy Nelson and Brett Swain. The Packers also have 3 TE’s that see regular action in Donald Lee, Spencer Havner and Andrew Quarless.
Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons: Defense
Defense is where this game will be decided. Atlanta’s defense is allowing 339 yards a game, 244 through the air. They have the third rated run defense in the NFC. Green Bay’s defense comes into Atlanta playing their best, holding teams to 17 points over the last 14 quarters they have played. They are allowing 323 yards a game, 211 through the air. Both teams have intercepted opposing quarterbacks 15 times. Green Bay has forced more fumbles than Atlanta, 11-8, recovered more, 6-5, and scored more defensive TD’s, 3-1.
Look for this game to start out as a defensive battle as the offenses try to figure out the opposing defenses game plan. Atlanta will try to establish the run on offense with Michael Turner and keep Aaron Rodgers off the field. Once the Packers can stop the run, force the Falcons into unfavorable down and distance, they will be able to gain control of this game.
Aaron Rodgers will get the Packers offense going and eventually force the Falcons to throw the ball to catch up. Green Bay will look to rattle Matt Ryan with their various alignments and different blitz packages which will lead to forced passes and turnovers. Other than a Green Bay win, the only sure thing in this game is the losing coach won’t get fired like the last two the Packers have faced.
- Packers-Falcons Prediction: Green Bay 27, Atlanta 17.
- Packers-Falcons Spread Pick: Packers +1
- Packers-Falcons Over-Under Pick: Under
Fantasy Stat Predictions:
Green Bay: Aaron Rodgers 290 yds, 2 TD’s(45 yds rushing);Donald Driver 100 yds, 1 TD;Greg Jennings 80 yds, 1 TD; James Jones 75 yards, Donald Lee 30 yds; Brandon Jackson 65 yds, 1 TD. Green Bay DST, 2 INT’s, 1 FF, 3 sacks. Mason Crosby 2-2 FG’s.
Atlanta: Matt Ryan 220 yds, 1 TD; Roddy White 90 yds, 1 TD; Tony Gonzalez 85 yds; Michael Jenkins 35 yds; Michael Turner 105 yds(rec/rush) 1TD; Atlanta DST 2 sacks; Matt Bryant 1-1 FG’s.