Green Bay Packers: Chances of Each Remaining Opponent To Spoil a 16-0 Season
The Packers are 11-0, but still have five games left until they have the chance to be 16-0. And their opponents remaining are not all going to be easy wins, as four of the five remaining teams have winning records so far this year. And while the Packers are certainly playing like the best team in the NFL this season, they still have a long way to go until they put together a perfect season.
Here are the final five teams the Packers face this season, and their chances of spoiling the Packers' run at perfection.
5. Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs, who are the only team left on the schedule with a losing record, I believe have the worst chance of beating the Packers and spoiling their hopes at being undefeated.
Not only are they having the worst season of the five teams remaining, but they have also lost starting quarterback Matt Cassel, forcing them to choose between struggling and unproven quarterback Tyler Palko, and newly acquired Kyle Orton, who is a far better quarterback, but still needs to learn his new offense.
The one thing going for the Chiefs is that they are playing at home, and Arrowhead Stadium is said to be one of the biggest home-field advantages in the league. Still, the Packers offense has thrived under difficult conditions, and should be fine against a Chiefs defense that has lost several of their big players, including premiere safety Eric Berry.
Kansas City's Chances of Beating the Packers: Not Likely
4. Oakland Raiders
The Oakland Raiders may be 6-4 and sitting at the top of the AFC West, but they are still a team that the Packers can easily beat, especially at Lambeau Field.
The Raiders are also starting a newly acquired quarterback in Carson Palmer, and while Palmer is playing fairly well so far, the Raiders' strength on offense is running the ball, which the Packers have done a pretty good job of stopping, even with premiere running backs like Matt Forte and Adrian Peterson.
The Raiders will certainly play better against the Packers than they have in the past, but I don't see them having the talent level to beat the Packers, especially in their own home stadium.
Oakland's Chances of Beating the Packers: Not Likely
3. Chicago Bears
The Bears are probably the most talented team that the Packers have left, and while I do think that the Bears defense will be able to slow down Aaron Rodgers, the loss of Jay Cutler on offense will likely be a pretty big blow to this team.
Defensively, the Bears know how to slow down the Packers offense, but the Packers defense usually plays very well against the Bears offense. In their first meeting this year, the Packers limited Matt Forte, their best offensive player, to under 10 yards of rushing. In addition, they have been able to force turnovers and confuse the quarterback.
With backup Caleb Hanie under center, I expect the Bears offense to struggle against the Packers defense, who has been improving in the past few weeks. However, the Bears defense will prove to be a good match against Aaron Rodgers, making this a close game.
Chicago's Chances of Beating the Packers: Somewhat Likely
2. New York Giants
One of the Packers' biggest tests will be next week, when they face the New York Giants on the road. The Giants have lost two straight, and possibly three straight with a loss to New Orleans, but have a formidable defense that knows how to get after the quarterback.
Last year, the Packers smoked the Giants 45-17, but in New York, I feel that this game will at least be closer. I expect the Giants' defense to be one of the bigger challenges to Aaron Rodgers and the Packers offense, but with their struggles in the second half of the season, I think the edge will go to the Packers in this game. However, of the five opponents left, the Giants have one of the better chances to beat the Green Bay Packers, especially since the matchup will be in New York.
New York's Chances of Beating the Packers: Somewhat Likely
1. Detroit Lions
The Lions are the most likely team to beat the Packers, not because they are the best team on this list, but because they are a good team that is playing them in the final game of the season.
If the Packers beat all four of the other teams on this list, they will be 15-0 and will have wrapped up everything they need to have home field advantage throughout the playoffs. They may very likely decide to rest starters in this game, giving their injured players a chance to get healthy, and avoiding risk of their healthy players to get injured.
The Lions are a good team with a formidable defense, and with all the injuries that occured on Thanksgiving when they played, they may decide to rest some of their key players in order to play it safe as they go into the playoffs as the Number 1 seed.
Chances of Detroit Beating the Packers: Likely