The Green Bay Packers (3-2) have a big game coming up Sunday afternoon as they sit ½ game behind the NFC Central Division leading Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions. The Pack squeezed out a 19-17 victory in their last game against the defending champion Ravens and the pass defense must tighten up as they face a Cleveland Browns (3-3) team that will be looking to throw the football.
Kickoff is set for 4:25 pm ET at Lambeau Field, in Green Bay Wisconsin and can be seen on CBS television.
According to the NFL odds listed at 5 Dimes Sportsbook, the Packers are enormous 11.5 point betting favorite with the total listed at 45.5.
The point spread seems a bit high, being that the Packers one weakness is their defense against the pass. Could this be an early hint on to where we should place our NFL picks?
The Pack are 28th in the NFL against the pass, allowing a whopping 293.6 yards per game and Cleveland has a formidable trio in the form of quarterback Brandon Weeden, tight end Jordan Cameron, and wide receiver Josh Gordon. Will this game be a blowout at a place that Green Bay excels in the form of Lambeau Field?
Well Balanced Pack Attack
Usually, quarterback Aaron Rodgers is used to shouldering the responsibility of the offense on his back as he looks for reliable receivers like Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, James Jones, and Jermichal Finley, but after an early season injury to rookie Eddie Lacy, this former University of Alabama running back and 2nd round NFL Draft pick has proven that he’s the real deal.
In his last 2 games , Lacy has rushed for 219 yards on 46 carries. Although he didn’t get into the endzone in either of those games, it takes the level of predictability out of the Packers offense and makes them a much more dangerous football team.
That said, Randall Cobb and James Jones have both suffered injuries recently and Lacy will be getting a lot more work than expected. Cobb is not expected to play this week and Jones might be out until week 15. This even proves my point more that the point spread should be much lower.
Aaron Rodgers is a top-flight quarterback and will have to rely on Jordy Nelson and Jermichael Finley.
Defending Cameron and Gordon
Green Bay has always been at the top of the league statistically in every category except for one; pass defense. Once again, the Packers defense against the pass is one of the worst in the league and even with superstars like A.J. Hawk leading the defense, the Packers will need to contain the young dynamic duo of Cameron and Gordon.
With Brian Hoyer out of the picture for the season, look for Brandon Weeden to have much more confidence as he enters week 7 with some job security. Weeden is coming off of 292 yard passing game with 2 TD’s last week in a loss to Detroit and he should be able to hook up with Gordon and Cameron regularly. While Jordan Cameron leads the Browns in receiving, Josh Gordon is coming off of a huge 7 catch, 126 yard performance against Detroit.
Even with the injuries to key players, this is a game that Green Bay should squeeze out. That said, the Packers are weak against the pass and 11.5 points are way too many points to lay in a spot like this.
Pick- Cleveland Browns +11.5 at 5 Dimes