New York Giants @ Green Bay Packers Predictions & Analysis 1/15/12

Last Updated: January 15th, 2012 by Adam Markowitz (Bankroll Sports Columnist)
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The team that everyone thinks is the best in the league, the Green Bay Packers, ends the Divisional Round of the playoffs, and we are set to make our NFL predictions in their game against the New York Giants.

NFL Playoffs Matchup: New York Giants vs. Green Bay Packers
Giants vs. Packers Location: Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI
Giants vs. Packers Date/Time: Sunday, January 15th, 4:30 p.m.
Giants vs. Packers Television Coverage: FOX

Click Here For The Rest Of The 2012 NFL Playoff Bracket And Other NFL Playoff Previews

Key #1: New York has to continue to get a good contribution from the running game
We know that the way that you beat the Packers is by throwing the ball, but keeping a consistent offense both on the ground and through the air is going to be the calling card for continued success in the postseason for the Giants. This was the worst rushing attack in the league this year, but both RB Ahmad Bradshaw and RB Brandon Jacobs had success against a normally solid rush defense for the Atlanta Falcons last week. In fact, QB Eli Manning threw the ball about the same number of times as the Giants ran it, and that was a real shock for a team that normally throws it at least 60-65 percent of the time in games like that one. It’s hard to run the ball right up the gut against DT BJ Raji and the rest of those stout front liners for the Packers, but it is something that New York is going to have to do to keep the Packers from really assaulting Manning and the passing attack.

Giants @ Packers Odds at Wager Web Sportsbook
New York Giants +9
Green Bay Packers -9
Over/Under 51.5
Click Here to Bet Your NFL playoffs Picks!

Key #2: Greg Jennings has to get involved in the game early
Jennings played in the first 13 games of the season for the Packers, and the team averaged 35.6 points per game. Week 17 was a bit of a toss week with QB Aaron Rodgers sitting, but the offense just didn’t look the same without Jennings out there. He and WR Jordy Nelson can both stretch the field, and when both are on their game, it really opens up the rest of the offense for guys like TE Jermichael Finley and WR Donald Driver, who can’t get up the field as easily. Jennings really has to get into this one early, especially if he is matched up against rookie DB Prince Amukamara. He can do it all, and there is a reason that he has averaged right around five receptions and 80 yards per game over the course of the last five seasons.


Key #3: Green Bay’s flaws cannot be exposed in the clutch
If this were a game against the San Francisco 49ers, we would be having a totally different discussion, as we don’t think that QB Alex Smith really has the ability to win a game in the final two minutes on the road against a team like this. However, the Packers have a real problem against QB Eli Manning, who has proven that he can win games from behind, including against this very same team when he did everything that could do just a couple months ago. Green Bay has one of the worst rushing teams in the league, and neither RB Ryan Grant nor RB James Starks had even 600 rushing yards on the season. It has been proven time and time again that the Packers can’t close out games with their running game, and if that happens in a tight game on Sunday, Eli and the Giants are going to have a chance against a pass defense that ranked No. 32 in the league. There were a number of teams that had a lot of success against the Packers this year down the stretch, and if this ends up being the case once again this week, Green Bay, in spite of its 15 wins in the regular season, could be in a lot of trouble against a team that has a history of winning games like this one against all odds.

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Posted in NFL Football - Last Updated on Sunday, January 15th, 2012 @ 10:53 am (EST)
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