With the division playoffs looming, Green Bay and New York fans alike are scrutinizing the odds and anticipating the results.
As if any of that will matter when it comes down to game time...
Despite the randomness which we all celebrate as football fans, there are constants which live in the game. This is where stats come from, this is where memorization of past and present come to mind.
We all know that "one guy" who does this, who knows everything, who crunches the numbers and examines the box score. If football had a skirt, this would be the guy who looked under it.
Let's look at some of the things 'that' guy may be anticipating this upcoming Sunday...
When Green Bay has gone up against the Giants, the Pack has walked away victoriously 31 times compared to New York's 23.
Yea, yea they tied twice and "that guy" knows that, but I'm talking wins here! You know, that "I just beat you and I'm advancing in the playoffs and you're not," type of win.
Although this will mean nothing when it comes down to the execution of the game, it does leave Packer Backers a little less anxious when they realize Green Bay is typically the winner.
On the other hand, the Giants' road game is looking a little more promising long term...hm...
Green Bay home game Vs. New York
This game, though, is not a Green Bay road game. This game is a Green Bay Packer home-field advantage Lambeau game.
You catch that? I said Lambeau.
That's right, debatably one of the best home-field advantage turfs in the entire NFL. The only reason this is even subjective is because of the yearly rotating statistics and the individual team preferences which are living, breathing and ever-changing.
Green Bay wins at home. End of story.
Or is it?
New York has won two of the last five Lambeau faceoffs...
In the four times that coach Mike McCarthy and coach Tom Coughlin have faced off, McCarthy has been the one in the postgame interview receiving the pat on the back.
Additionally, this is the fourth time that McCarthy has taken the Pack to the playoffs since his debut as the Green Bay head coach. Coach Coughlin is also 2-5 in his career against the Pack.
That's something that we all know, or at least can look up with ease. But what you can banter about "that guy" is that in his distant past, and almost forgotten, is that Coughlin was Green Bay's wide receiver coach back in 1986 and 1987, and that Dom Capers was his defensive coordinator while he coached for the Jacksonville Jaguars in 1999 and 2000.
Fortunately, the closest connection to Green Bay's current team dates back to 2008, so no insider information should be known. We can't help but notice the similarities in wide receiver success, though...
It's no secret that the Green Bay defense is their weak point.
It should come as no further surprise then that New York is one of the (many) teams that has rated above them in this area.
In fact, New York is sitting dangerously ranked No. 1 in this year's postseason to date. How is Green Bay going to measure up when it comes to the final score?
With Green Bay allowing a worrisome 36 sacks on Rodgers already this year, McCarthy and the team can only hope that New York won't press Green Bay into an unrecoverable position.
Prior to Green Bay's bye week, the New York Giants rank No. 2 in the NFL this season in receiving yards from wide receivers.
Coming in at No. 1? The Green Bay Packers.
With over 200 average yards per game from both, we can be confident that Aaron Rodgers and Eli Manning will be looking towards players like Hakeem Nicks (NY) and Donald Driver (GB) to continue this pattern.
Victor Cruz, a spotlight wide receiver for the Giants this season, will be entering his second career playoff game in the upcoming faceoff against Green Bay.
Expect some good coverage on Driver especially, he did make 50 percent of the scoring touchdowns in their last meeting.
With so much on the line, New York will be watching their turnovers even more tightly.
On December 4, the Claymaker made one interception which resulted in a touchdown. After that, a sack by Matthews as well forced a fumble which was recovered by Green Bay's B.J. Raji.
You can be sure that New York does not want to add to the four lost fumbles they have already given up this year. Add to that the fact that Green Bay is leading the NFL in picks, and you know that the Giants will be guarding that ball like the Super Bowl depends on it.
With the Lambeau drum Tundra Line already echoing in the minds of NFL fans everywhere, the division playoffs remain a preview in our memories.
Game recaps that haven't even happened yet are in the foresight of our minds, and game highlights that may be play out in our imagination.
The 2011 postseason remains ahead of us, to be fought out on frozen tundras and artificial turf. The results? We have no idea, and neither does that "that guy," no matter how accurate or statistical their prediction.
That is the beauty of the playoffs, that is the reason which we all watch.
In football, anything can happen.