Packers vs. Redskins: TV Schedule, Odds, Ticket Info, Game Time and More

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Packers vs. Redskins: TV Schedule, Odds, Ticket Info, Game Time and More
Mike Roemer/Associated Press
Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers visit Washington in Sunday's NFC playoffs.

Two teams heading in unexpected directions collide Sunday in the NFC Wild Card Round when the Green Bay Packers take on the Washington Redskins.

Unexpected because it's Green Bay simmering down the stretch, entering the road contest as losers in two straight—including coughing up the NFC North crown to the Minnesota Vikings—while quarterback Aaron Rodgers struggles.

Unexpected because Washington's on a roll, winning its last four games and winning the NFC East while Kirk Cousins looks more like Rodgers than Rodgers himself.

Both teams start over with a chance at a clean slate and a shot at a Lombardi Trophy on Sunday. Here's everything to know about the encounter.

 

Game Details

When: Sunday, January 10, at 4:40 p.m. ET

Where: FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland

Television: Fox

Tickets: ScoreBig.com

Over/Under: 45

Spread: Green Bay (-1)

 

Team Injury Reports

Packers
NAME STATUS
Sam Shields, CB Questionable
Eddie Lacy, RB Questionable

Source: ESPN.com

Washington
NAME STATUS
Matt Jones, RB Questionable

Source: ESPN.com

Injury reports courtesy of ESPN.com.

 

Starting Over

Everything that could have gone wrong for the Packers over the past two weeks simply has. 

After starting the season on a six-game tear, Green Bay lost six of its final 10 games. Over the final three games of the season, running back Eddie Lacy averaged 39 rushing yards, and Rodgers took 13 sacks over his last two games while tossing a pair of touchdowns and interceptions.

Protecting Rodgers better and the star quarterback getting the ball out fast are two major points of emphasis for head coach Mike McCarthy.

"I think you have to remember, (Rodgers is) a great player. He wants the ball in his hands and when things break down he's going to make things happen," McCarthy said, according to ESPN.com. "But also the risk and exposure he's put to is unacceptable to myself. And he knows that."

It has to be the main emphasis considering Washington has 14 sacks over its last three games. 

With Lacy and others perhaps struggling against Washington's defensive front, Rodgers will once again look to lean on his odd cast of receiving weapons:

NAME REC TAR YDS AVG TD
James Jones 50 100 890 17.8 8
Randall Cobb 79 129 829 10.5 6
Richard Rodgers 58 85 510 8.8 8

Source: ESPN.com

Odd numbers and downward spiral or not, Rodgers and the Packers have to be able to match Washington blow for blow.

The Green Bay defense will help, but as recent weeks have shown, it might not matter much if Rodgers cannot better protect himself and the ball.

 

Riding the Wave

Head coach Jay Gruden's team is one of the NFL's hottest right now. 

Who needs a blank slate? Washington has won four straight, scoring 34 or more points in three of those while never allowing more than 25 points.

Cousins, as odd as it sounds, has been the catalyst. He's completed 69.8 percent of his passes this year with 29 scores to 11 picks—12 and one of those coming over the four-game streak, respectively.

Maybe that doesn't do it justice. Cousins, since Week 7, as illustrated by NFL on ESPN:

So why isn't Washington, the home team, favored?

Cousins has been great, but Green Bay ranks sixth against the pass at 227.6 yards allowed per game and 12th at 20.2 points allowed. The Packers' rushing defense certainly leaves something to be desired, but Washington running backs Alfred Morris and Matt Jones have combined for four rushing scores this year—Cousins has five.

At home, Cousins shouldn't feel hesitant to go to tight end Jordan Reed, one of the game's best who has 87 catches for 952 yards and 11 scores. Don't forget wide receiver DeSean Jackson, and even Pierre Garcon has come on as of late with a touchdown in each of his past three outings.

Green Bay's defense might force Washington to alter what it likes to do, which would decide the game outright. Based on recent momentum, though, Gruden's team might be able to ride obvious strengths to another win.

 

Prediction

Which team will win?

Submit Vote vote to see results

Rodgers just isn't himself. 

Maybe it's those around him. Everyone gets a bit of the blame. The wideouts take too long to get open, which leaves Rodgers vulnerable against good rushes, and the signal-caller's running game doesn't keep defenses honest.

Washington will pounce. The defense can pin its ears back and just go at it without a semblance of fear for what Lacy and others bring to the table. It's going to force Rodgers into another miserable stat line as he attempts to do too much to compensate for everything around him—this time on the road in the cold.

Look for Cousins to outduel Rodgers late, which is quite the fitting turn of events for what has been one of the oddest seasons in recent memory.

Prediction: Washington 28, Green Bay 27

 

Stats courtesy of NFL.com and accurate as of January 7. All advanced metrics courtesy of Pro Football FocusAll betting information courtesy of Odds Shark.

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