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All Eyes Are On Green Bay’s Quarterback This Thanksgiving

Posted by Stan Simmons on 2/4/2014 4:58:49 AM

The Green Bay Packers know that their ability to contend for the NFC North Division championship this season is utterly dependent on the health of one and only one player.

Green Bay Packers @ Detroit Lions – Thursday, November 28

Betting line: Lions -5

Why Green Bay Will Win

This is a game that the Packers will almost surely have to win without Aaron Rodgers.  The quarterback who makes so many things happen for Green Bay and its offense is immersed in what appears to be a long-term period of rehabilitation, to the point that he is almost assured of not being able to play until Dec. 8 at the earliest and probably not until Dec. 15 or 22. It is just not reasonable to expect Rodgers to play in this game on Thursday against Detroit, since Rodgers hadn’t even begun to practice with the team through the final weekend of November, preceding this game. How, then, can Green Bay win?

It’s more a matter of, “How can Detroit lose?” That’s a very realistic possibility.

One should realize that the Lions are one of the most inconsistent teams in the NFL, even though they have a winning record heading into week 13 of the season. Detroit doesn’t regularly translate home-field advantage into a victory. The Lions lost at home to the Cincinnati Bengals earlier this season, and they were a dead team at home against the Dallas Cowboys until a holding penalty by the Cowboys with roughly one minute left prevented Dallas from running out most of the clock. The Lions received 45 free seconds on that play and were therefore able to get the ball back with enough time left to score and win. Detroit is the kind of team that will fly high one week and then come crashing down to earth the next. The Lions defeated the Chicago Bears on the road in week 10 but then failed to beat the much weaker Pittsburgh Steelers in week 11. That’s the kind of thing the Lions do, not just this season, but every season. It’s why the team hasn’t won a playoff game since the 1991 season and hasn’t hosted a playoff game since the 1993 season.

Why Detroit Will Win

The Lions, playing at home on national television, will be powerfully motivated to win this game. Green Bay is a traditional rival, and beating the Packers would give the Lions more of a chance to win the NFC North championship. However, this is a straightforward online football betting dynamic for one basic reason: The Packers just aren’t much of a team without Aaron Rodgers on the field. It’s that simple. You’ve seen Green Bay collapse without its superstar quarterback. There’s no one to cover this team’s weaknesses and compensate for the average talent which exists at so many other positions. Green Bay is simply a weak and vulnerable team without Rodgers, especially on the road. There’s no good plan B for this team if Rodgers isn’t playing.

Who Will Win

For all the ways in which the Lions have been known to squander golden opportunities over the years, even Detroit can’t mess this one up. No Rodgers? No chance for Green Bay. Don’t overthink this game.

NFL Betting Pick: Lions

Get the latest inside skinny on the week 13 lines for the NFL at the outlet you depend on.


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