Welcome back to The Burgundy and Gold Report. The Green Bay Packers visit FedEx Field with a dangerous, but hobbled quarterback Aaron Rodgers. The Packers QB played the majority of the Minnesota game with a large brace on his knee, but during the most recent press conference he insisted he is OK. Confronting Rodgers when his health is compromised could be what this Skins defense needs to carry this team to 2-1,
The B&G Report continues to stand by its’s previous assertion that the defense would carry the team for the first quarter of the season. With the bye week coming after the Green Bay match-up, a Washington victory would go a long way towards improving this franchise’s morale. Although the Packers are at their best when Rodgers is gun-slinging , this Packers defense and offense have obvious weaknesses. Let’s take a look at some key notes that the Packers week #2 film revealed.
What Green Bay Does Well
Packer’s quarterback Aaron Rodgers makes the impossible, possible. if given time to throw, he could be the most dangerous QB of all time . The line calls and audibles that Rodgers makes are difficult to get a handle on. Even with the brace, Rodgers was extremely effective and still maintained the ability to throw on the run.
The Packers’ three-headed rushing attack might be mediocre with a mere 85.5 rpg average. However, the combination of converted receiver Ty Montgomery, Jamaal Williams and Aaron Jones (coming off suspension) gives the Packers a trio of tough runners. Although Williams and Montgomery only combined for 90 yards vs Minn., most of their big runs came on 3rd downs. This is a unit that Washington needs to take seriously.
Green Bay’s offensive line might not be full of household names, but are lunch pale maulers nonetheless. The bookend tackles Davis Bakhtiari & Bryan Bulaga showed real grit while protecting their injured quarterback. On many occasions versus the Vikings, the pair bailed out Rodgers after Minnesota stacked the box. They were also effective versus the heralded Vikings’ stunts and defensive back blitzes. The Packers’ veteran guard Lane Taylor was extremely effective at pulling during run plays.
The Green Bay special teams unit is active around the ball and dangerous (blocked punt returned for TD vs Minn)
The Green Bay offense is carrying the team while their rebuilt defense is maturing.
How Can the Redskins Win?
The Redskins seem to have an offensive advantage over Green Bay. As stated previously, the Packers’ defense was overhauled and made a lot mistakes over the past three weeks. The Packers frequently play man press coverage with a single high safety, as opposed to Indianapolis and Arizona who played mostly zone. In the Colts game, they played a soft, off-coverage zone that gave the Redskins underneath routes, but took away the sidelines and the middle of the field. The Redskins receivers, although underwhelming, have an opportunity to get one on one coverage all day. Alex Smith needs take deep shots if this team wants to establish any kind of passing threat.
Tight End Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis need to be utilized early and often. Packers’ All Pro linebacker Clay Matthews has been an absolute terror to deal with over the years. At this stage in Matthews’ career if caught in coverage with any of the Redskins tight ends, it would be considered a mismatch .
Although the RPO is all the rage, Gruden also is known for his choice route concepts. The concept is simple and it gives the receiver a variety of route options based on the defensive coverage. Reed will be matched up with a linebacker or safety, so look for this as an area to utilize.
The Redskins need to establish the run. This is the obvious topic among Redskins Nation, but the elements could be a factor. The forecast in Landover is calling for a 90% chance of rain at kick off. Throwing the ball could be an issue, so getting Peterson and Thompson featured should be a priority. The recent news of Kelley out with a toe injury puts Samja Perine as the other back to be activated on game day. Although Kapri Bibbs was recently promoted from the practice squad, his availability is a mystery. Whoever is running the ball needs to take advantage of the Packers’ inability to wrap up. On many occasions, Vikings’ running backs broke a tackle after a short gain, only to run for a first down. The threat of play-action is nonexistent if Washington doesn’t pose a threat in the run game.
The last B&G Report key to victory is applying pressure on Rodgers. Although the Packers’ quarterback moved well with the bulky knee brace, he’s not a threat to run far with a clear limp in his sprint. Forcing him out of the pocket also isn’t wise because his quick release usually leads to big throws downfield. The Redskins defensive lineman need to collapse the pocket and bring pressure. This year, Manusky’s defense has brought a four man rush the majority of the time, as opposed to bringing more rushers . That needs to change versus Rodgers. Outside linebackers Preston Smith & Ryan Kerrigan have been nonexistent, up to this point. If the Redskins hope to have success at beating Green Bay and stopping Rodgers, the pressure needs to come off the edges. Rodgers needs to feel the heat from the start. Getting him down and keeping him down might be the only way for Washington to get the W.
Final Burgundy and Gold Report Prediction:
The Redskins will bring the best defensive performance of the season and pull out the victory 27-20 REDSKINS
Thanks for checking out another Burgundy and Gold Report.
Written By Adam Aniba
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