GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - As the Green Bay Packers (2-0) prepare to host the Denver Broncos (0-2), it’s time to get ready for kickoff with Dave Schroeder’s ‘Fast 5 Pack Facts.’
#1 Sackless slump for Denver?: The Broncos boast a potent pass rush with Von Miller and Bradley Chubb, yet Denver has yet to record a sack or force a turnover this season. But that doesn’t prevent the Packers from preparing for greatness. Aaron Rodgers and the offense have praised Denver’s defense all week when talking to the media.
#2 Tremendous tackle tandem: Opposite Denver’s duo sits the Packers’ impressive bookend tackles: David Bakhtiari and Bryan Bulaga.
And while Bakhtiari, the left tackle, has garnered All-Pro praise, it is right tackle Bryan Bulaga who has allowed only 1 quarterback pressure in his last 182 pass blocks (per Pro Football Focus). That stat dates back to last year and encompasses matchups this season against the Bears’ Khalil Mack and the Vikings’ Danielle Hunter.
But on the interior of the Packers offensive line? Keep an eye on rookie LG Elgton Jenkins, who will make his first starts as Lane Taylor was placed on IR this weekend.
#3 Secret weapon?: The Packers passing game has yet to take off, ranking 26th in the league through 2 weeks. And Denver’s defense poses problems with a 4th-ranked pass defense. Green Bay’s gains could come on the ground, where Green Bay’s offense and Denver’s defense both rank middle of the road.
But the true secret sauce could be the pass-catching abilities of RB Aaron Jones. Last week Jones snared 4 catches as he accounted for 150 all-purpose yards. Beyond that, Jones ran a perfect wheel route in the 4th quarter that would have sealed the win if Rodgers’ throw had been on the mark. The Packers QB admitted as much in praising Jones this week.
#4 Defense dominates: Through 2 weeks, the Packers defense ranks #2 in scoring. The unit has been dominant outside of 3 big plays given up last week. And despite those 3 outliers, Green Bay has managed to control the first two games of the season. Takeaways are a big reason why. The Packers have forced 5 turnovers already, with 4 last week.
#5 Home field advantage: Not only are the Packers in the midst of playing 3 straight home games (and 5 of 6), but they are welcoming in a Broncos squad that has never won in Wisconsin. Denver is 0-5-1 in the state (0-1-1 in Milwaukee, 0-4 at Lambeau Field).
Prediction: Packers 27, Broncos 15
As always, tune in to Action 2 News at 5:30 and 10:00 pm for postgame highlights and reports and be sure to catch Sunday Sports Night Cover 2 at 10:35 for the best postgame coverage in the business.
OLB Preston Smith will be joining Chris Roth in studio this week to break down the game.