The NFL is finally back and the Packers will begin their title quest on Sunday. The Packers will kick their season off with a division game in Minnesota. The Packers split the season series with the Vikings last season and will have a chance to win a big game to start the season. The NFC North is expected to be a two-horse race between the Packers and Vikings. Here are three reasons The Packers will come out on top Sunday.
Elite Pass Rush
The Packers’ defense has high expectations going into the season, and it all starts up front. The Packers’ pass rush is going to create problems for opposing offenses all year, and Kirk Cousins and the Vikings are first. Preston Smith and Rashan Gary are both coming off great campaigns in 2021 and will get to start the season with a Vikings team they’ve found success against. Last season the two combined for 4.0 sacks in two matchups with Minnesota.
The Packers’ pass rush also includes a strong interior presence with Kenny Clark and new additions Jarran Reed and Devonte Wyatt. The Packers made it a mission to make Kenny Clark’s job easier. They added two interior tackles who can both create problems at the line of scrimmage. With another option to draw attention away from Clark, the Packers’ pass rush gets instantly better.
Minnesota’s Weak Secondary
The Packers’ wide receiver room saw a big change this offseason with the departure of Davante Adams. The Packers signed Sammy Watkins and drafted three wide receivers in the 2022 draft. Even though Davante Adams is gone the Packers still have talent at the position. The talent will get a chance to start off strong against a Minnesota secondary that has struggled recently. Harrison Smith still headlines the secondary, but outside of him, the Vikings don’t pose much of a threat in the group. Cameron Dantzler Sr. has struggled so far in his career, and Patrick Peterson is no longer the player he once was. Allen Lazard, Sammy Watkins and Randall Cobb will have plenty of opportunities to make plays on Sunday.
Last season Aaron Rodgers torched The Vikings’ secondary for 673 yards, six touchdowns and a 130.8 passer rating in two matchups.
In the past few seasons, The Packers’ game plan was very clear. They wanted to feed Davante Adams and rely on Aaron Rodgers’ arm to create plays. However, this season they don’t have the luxury of a First-Team All-Pro wideout. Instead, they will be able to spread the ball more and rely on their two, star running backs. The reality is nobody really knows what the Packers’ offense could look like. It could be a heavy run system or it could be more of an air raid. Regardless of what the scheme is, The Packers have the weapons to be successful. The Vikings will have to key in on more than just one player in this matchup, and the Packers will be able to take advantage.
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