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NFL Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Packers 5 Keys To Victory Against New Orleans Saints

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Green Bay Packers 5 Keys To Victory Against New Orleans Saints

packers
Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE

The Green Bay Packers (1-2) will be looking to get things back on track after their disappointing loss to the Seattle Seahawk (2-1) Monday night. Green Bay will be taking on the winless New Orleans Saints (0-3) in a matchup that was much anticipated before the season began.

The game will still be highly anticipated but not for the reasons fans thought. With a combined 1-5 record, the loser of the contest will fall into a hole they might not be able to crawl out of. The Saints cannot afford to go 0-4, as their chances to make the postseason will quickly diminish. The only team in NFL history to accomplish the rare feat was the 1992 San Diego Chargers.

On the other hand, although the Packers should be 2-1 after one of the worst calls in league history cost them the game, they will be trying to avoid falling to 1-3. Only 21 teams in history have started out 1-3 and still clinched a postseason berth, including the 1993 and 2004 Packers.

Green Bay will have to do whatever they can to move past Monday night’s debacle in Seattle and try to focus on New Orleans. Head coach Mike McCarthy has no problem with the team using the loss as motivation as long as they do not have self-pity. In the NFL, just like in life, nothing is handed on a silver platter. If the Packers want to win it all this season, they are going to have to earn it. The following slides are five keys to victory for Green Bay against New Orleans.

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Make them run

run
John David Mercer-US PRESSWIRE

The Saints rank 22nd in the NFL in rushing yards per game (92.7) and considering they are a pass first team, the Packers’ goal should be to make them run. New Orleans will try to do whatever they can to shred Green Bay’s secondary, but considering the Packers are currently the No. 1 pass defense in the league it may not be as easy as they think. The only downside is Green Bay has struggled a bit against the run, but I personally believe taking the ball out of Drew Brees’ hands is always a good thing.

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Get Cedric Benson involved

benson
Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE

The Packers have one of the worst rushing attacks in the league as they are averaging 78.3 yards per game. Not to mention, most of that is from quarterback Aaron Rodgers scrambling. Green Bay was able to take over the second half against Seattle due to getting Cedric Benson involved in the game. He was able to pick up yardage on the ground, as well as, catch short passes out of the backfield. If the Packers want to defeat the Saints, Benson must have a big game.

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Maximize opportunities on offense

offense
Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE

Everyone can agree Monday night’s game should have never been as close as it turned out to be. Green Bay had numerous opportunities to get in the end zone but simply could not do it and had to settle for field goals instead. Against a high scoring offense such as the Saints, the Packers have no choice but to maximize every opportunity on offense. Despite being 0-3, New Orleans is averaging 27.7 points per game. Green Bay, on the other hand, ranks towards the bottom of the league with only 19.0 points per game. Just like Week 1 of last season, this contest is expected to be a shootout so the Packers’ offense better be ready to bring it.

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Throw everything at Drew Brees

brees
John David Mercer-US PRESSWIRE

Just like Rodgers, Brees is struggling in the early part of the 2012 season. He is doing plenty better than Rodgers is as he is still throwing for a decent amount of yards per game (284.7) and has tossed seven touchdowns, but he has also thrown five interceptions. Brees’ numbers may be high again because just like last season he is attempting the most passes per game (45.7) than anyone in the league. The Packers have no choice but to throw everything they have at Brees, hoping to force him to make mistakes. He has not performed well under pressure this season so sacks and quarterback hits are a must in order for Green Bay to win.

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Win turnover battle

turnover
Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE

Any time two teams that are capable of scoring points at will come together, it usually comes down to whoever wins the turnover battle wins the game. The Packers have recorded four interceptions in three games this season, while the Saints have one pick and three fumble recoveries. After Monday night’s loss, expect Green Bay’s defense to come out flying while doing whatever they can to give the offense as many opportunities as possible to score.