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|Los Angeles Rams||+7
|Green Bay Packers||-7
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The Packers seem too strong on both sides of the ball to be beaten by the low-seeded Rams, though LA’s defense with DT Aaron Donald will do their best to prove that wrong.
Packers -7 (-105)
|Rams vs Packers Information|
|What||Los Angeles Rams vs Green Bay Packers|
|Where||Lambeau Field in Green Bay, WI|
|When||Saturday, January 16, 2021; 4:35 PM ET|
|How to watch||FOX|
The Los Angeles Rams beat the Seahawks in their Wild Card matchup last week despite quarterback Jared Goff’s recently broken thumb, and with just 9-of-19 pass completions from Goff’s passing attack, the team had to rely more on rookie RB Cam Akers (131 rushing yards, 45 receiving yards, 1 TD) who should fare well against the Packers’ 13th ranked run defense.
The Green Bay Packers earned a playoff bye week, so the team should be rested and healed up, with their veteran QB Aaron Rodgers hoping to earn another shot at the Lombardi Trophy and having the team and the playmakers (including WR Davante Adams and RB Aaron Jones) to do it.
These NFC cross-divisional rivals have met each other 95 other times (including 2 postseason games), with the Green Bay Packers winning 46 of those games and the Los Angeles Rams winning 47 of the games, plus there have also been 2 ties.
If all had gone better, meaning that backup QB John Wolford had not hurt his neck and did not have to leave the Wild Card game last week, then starter Jared Goff would never have to have jumped onto the field despite his recent thumb surgery and subsequent (and ongoing) rehab.
But he did, and Goff’s numbers during that game were weak, completing less than 50% of his passes – just 9-of-19 for 155 yards – for one touchdown, though he did not throw any interceptions in that one, his total picks for the season staying at 13.
Wolford is listed as questionable for this Divisional Round game with the Packers, so expect Goff to have to step up and fight through whatever pain or discomfort a quarterback feels right after thumb surgery, a definite factor if this offense hopes to get it right.
The Green Bay Packers have done a lot of improvements on the defensive side of the ball this season, now ranked 9th in the league in that category after allowing opponents to gain 334 total offensive yards on average.
That same defense keeps whatever team they play to about 23 points – their opponent Rams is first in that category after keeping the teams they play to 18.5 points per game – and they still have a few players listed as questionable that could affect their play.
Check back in to make sure who in Green Bay will be suiting up and who will not be, especially linebacker Za’Darius Smith (ankle), a key part of both their run defense and pass rush.
Rookie running back Cam Akers has become an integral part of the Rams offense, his 131 yards of rushing and touchdown a big reason the Rams were able to outplay the Seahawks and continue on in the postseason.
Now Akers gets to go against a team that allows opponents to rush for almost 113 yards per matchup, and for a young player who has only posted 100+ yards in a game this season twice, that number would work out just fine, especially if there were some end-zone visits thrown in there, as well.
On the season, Akers has carried the ball 145 times for 625 yards and 2 touchdowns, plus he has caught 11 balls for 123 yards and another touchdown, numbers that will only get better as time goes on, hopefully starting Saturday against these talented Packers.
The Green Bay Packers are fortunate to have wide receiver Davante Adams, a 4x Pro Bowler and NFL touchdowns leader this season with 18, the perfect target for veteran QB Aaron Rodgers to look for, especially whenever things start to get too hairy in the backfield.
In his seventh NFL season, Adams has put on a receiver clinic, with 115 catches for 1,374 yards and those 18 incredible touchdowns, his 98.1 yards per game this regular season also the best in the NFL.
Keep your eyes on this young man on Saturday, because he will need to have himself a career day against a Rams team who ranks number one against the pass, a challenge that he and his hurler Rodgers are most likely eagerly awaiting.
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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager. Email: [email protected]More info on Mike Lukas
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