Packers hope to get back on track against Buccaneers
For the Green Bay Packers, last week's loss to the Buffalo Bills was ugly.
Now with two games left, it's time for the Packers to put that game behind and look forward.
If there's any Packer fans that are worried, just R-E-L-A-X.
But really, Green Bay needs a win Sunday, to keep track with Detroit for the NFC North division crown. If they do win, the Packers will host the Lions in Week 17 at Lambeau Field for the division title and a shot at payback from earlier this season at Ford Field where Detroit beat Green Bay.
First things first, though; beat the Tampa Bay. Tampa Bay is winless at home and 2-12 this season. Green Bay is 10-4, but 3-4 away from Lambeau Field.
Aaron Rodgers has to put that terrible Bills games away, too. He didn't have his best performance. His receivers dropped a lot of balls, but he wasn't accurate and made a few costly bad throws. Rodgers was 17 of 42 against Buffalo for 185 yards, zero touchdowns and two interceptions. He also lost a fumble on the Packers last offensive play of the game that led to a safety by the Bills. Rodgers completed 40.5 percent of his passes and had a 34.3 passer rating.
Rodgers is most likely the NFL's 'MVP' frontrunner and will need a big game to help his case. But then there's Tampa Bay and history that Rodgers has hopefully forgot. Rodgers is 1-2 all-time against Tampa Bay and Raymond James Stadium is the only stadium where Rodgers has thrown a pick-six.
For Tampa Bay, Lovie Smith is the guy in charge and he will be a familiar face for the Packers face Sunday. Smith's Buccaneers are allowing 26.2 points per game, and scoring 18.1 points per game. Tampa Bay is allowing 367 yards per game on defense.
Green Bay is averaging 31.1 points per game this season and allowing 23.2 points per game this season. The Packers are averaging 384 yards per game on offense.
Also worth noting is Tampa Bay is allowing 116 rushing yards per game. Not a bad time to get Eddie Lacy going because the Alabama tailback has been hot as of late. Lacy has scored a rushing touchdown, rush for 75-plush yards, and average 4.7 yards per carry or greater in four of his last five games. The only thing that might hold Lacy back is his eye. He's probable and has been limited in practice because his contact lens has caused irritation. If Lacy is limited, James Starks is a viable option and has been running well for the Packers this season.
So perhaps Sunday's game will be a good time for Green Bay's offense to get back on track? Packers fans hope so.
Green Bay: Davon House is out of Sunday's game. Bryan Bulaga is questionable with a concussion. Lacy, T.J. Lang, Clay Matthews, Josh Sitton, Mike Neal and Nick Perry are probable.
Tampa Bay: Major Wright is out of Sunday's game. Mason Foster, Isaiah Frey, Dashan Goldson, Clinton McDonald, Kevin Pamphile, and Solomon Patton are questionable. Bobby Rainey is probable.
Sunday's game is noon and is on Fox. The game can also be heard right here on ESPN 99.1
Sam Tastad will have pre-and-post game report for the Packers all season long. Follow him on Twitter @samtastad and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.