I'll level with you. Up to now, I would have been the first guy to chalk up the Lions-Packers game at Lambeau Field as an unavoidable loss.
Maybe it still is. But if nothing else, it has taken on a fair amount of intrigue.
The Green Bay Packers are no longer playing for perfection. They're in the playoffs and have an incredibly good shot at wrapping up home field advantage next week against Chicago. Which means in all likelihood, they don't have to leave their home field again this season, save for maybe February 5.
Which means that the Packers are likely to come up against the Lions in Week 17 with absolutely nothing to play for. Not playoff position, not a perfect season, maybe not even the chance to knock the Lions out of the playoffs (several scenarios could see the Lions clinch in Week 16).
Better yet, they'll be up against the team that gave Aaron Rodgers a concussion last year, in cold weather, with only a long-standing home winning streak left to defend.
Frankly, the Lions could come up in that game with nothing to play for, either. But you have to wonder if the Lions would play harder to eliminate the 20-year Lambeau losing streak than the Packers would to keep it.
After all, the Packers are thinking title defense. The Lions are thinking, "win the next game."
So do the Packers play their starters in Week 17 to keep a streak alive against a bitter division rival?
And now that the Packers have been proven vulnerable, is playing their starters even enough to guarantee a win?