Green Bay Packers

Packers Fans Should Be NFC East Fans This Weekend

Photo Credit: Tommy Gilligan (USA TODAY Sports)

The only downside to the Green Bay Packers getting the No. 1 seed in the NFC is that we have to wait another week to see them play again. Luckily, the NFL expanded the playoffs this year, which brings us more games to watch and future opponents to cheer against.

No playoff opponent is an easy win, but there are definitely teams the Packers would rather not see come to Lambeau Field in a week or two. That’s why, for one week only, Packers fans can’t just be Packers fans. Everyone needs to also become NFC East fans. It would be best if the Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles won their playoff games this weekend.

Absolutely no one should want to see the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or San Francisco 49ers come to town. In case folks forgot, those are the teams the Packers played the last two seasons in the NFC Championships. Both of those ended poorly for Green Bay.

They say you have to beat the best to be the best. Yeah, screw that. An easier path to the Super Bowl gives you a better chance of winning it. Just ask the Milwaukee Brewers. They have lost to the World Series champions in the playoffs in the last three seasons. They would have definitely wanted to play an easier team.

After two seasons of heartbreak and four losses in the NFC Championship in the past decade, it’s time for the Packers to finally clear that hurdle. The Cowboys and Eagles winning would remove Green Bay’s two biggest threats.

Cheer For The Eagles

Philadelphia ended the season with a 9-8 record, second in the NFC East, and good enough to clinch the last playoff spot. They will head to Tampa Bay to face off against Tom Brady and the Buccaneers. Tampa was 7-1 at home this year. The Eagles were 6-3 on the road.

Philly rested most of their starters in Week 18 to get ready for the playoffs, while the Buccaneers were too worried about getting Rob Gronkowski his incentives. Both strategies are reasonable. It’s just impossible to like the Bucs for any reason. Are they still defending Antonio Brown? Probably.

Brady is still very dangerous in the playoffs. A packed Lambeau Field and an improved Packers defense is a much better scenario this year, but you can never count the other No. 12 out. It would be better not to have to face them at all.

The Eagles have averaged around 26 points this season, while the Buccaneers are just over 30. The Packers could have a little bit of trouble with Philly’s deep running game and Jalen Hurts’ mobility, but that’s not nearly as dangerous as Tampa Bay’s offensive weapons or San Francisco’s running game.

It’s not often that the lowest seed can upset the second seed, especially a team like the Bucs. But it would be in Green Bay’s best interest if it happened.

Cheer For The Cowboys

Yes, the Cowboys score more points per game than any other team on average. Dallas has a great offense and a pretty stellar defense. They won the NFC East and had a 12-5 record. But I would much rather have them come to Lambeau than San Francisco.

The 49ers have battled through injuries and an up-and-down season but are still too dangerous to overlook. They have a top-5 defense and a top-10 offense. I also want nothing to do with Elijah Mitchell and their group of running backs. The Packers haven’t been great against the run.

Of course, Ezekiel Elliott is no picnic. But with Tony Pollard battling injuries, focusing on trying to shut down Elliott is much easier than dealing with Mitchell, JaMycal Hasty, Jeff Wilson Jr., and Trey Sermon. It’s also Mike McCarthy coaching, and he hates using running backs properly.

Green Bay beat the 49ers once already this year. Sermon was their lead rusher, George Kittle was still giving the Packers problems, but Green Bay held Deebo Samuel to only 52 yards. The Kyle Shanahan-Matt LaFleur connection always adds an extra element of interest, too. On paper, the Packers should win, but it’s still a risky move with the pieces San Francisco has.

It would also be much cooler to see former Packers head coach McCarthy return to Lambeau. It’s two legacy teams with a recent history of tough showdowns in the playoffs. You have two of the best offenses going at it. The storyline writes itself.

Oh, and the Packers have also won the last three times they’ve played each other.

Cheer for the NFC East

If the Buccaneers and Cowboys both win, they will play each other, and the Packers will play the winner of the Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams game. If the 49ers win, they will come to Lambeau — unless the Eagles win. Having the Cowboys and Eagles win would be ideal. The Packers would face off against the Eagles and, hopefully, leave with a win to face off against the winner of the Cowboys vs. Rams/Cardinals shoot-out.

The Eagles would be riding high after a victory over the Bucs. But that is preferable to facing Brady or the 49ers. In a perfect world, one of those teams will win. But this is the real world, so I fully expect the Buccaneers and 49ers to win because we can’t have nice things.

Most likely, the Packers will have to beat the winner of the Rams-Cardinals game and then probably the Buccaneers. I hate typing that. But one can also dream. So let’s go, Eagles and Cowboys!

Green Bay Packers
Keisean Nixon Could Be the Most Impactful Former Raiders On the Packers
By Matt Hendershott - Aug 11, 2022
Green Bay Packers
How To Draft the Packers’ Offense This Fantasy Season
By Brandon Virk - Aug 11, 2022
Green Bay Packers

The Packers Need To Adjust the O-Line For Rodgers' Sake

Photo Credit: Tommy Gilligan (USA TODAY Sports)

The offensive line is seen as the pillar for a transition period for the Green Bay Packers offense. The unit will go through a transformation without Davante Adams, […]

Continue Reading