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Sunday, September 15, 2013

Redskins @ Packers: 3 Keys to the Game

Joe Buck and Troy Aikman will be at Lambeau Field on Sunday when the Washington Redskins visit  the Green Bay Packers. Both teams took tough losses and week 1 and it will be a dog fight to avoid the dreaded 0-2 start. Since 1990, only 12 percent of team that started 0-2 have gone on to make the playoffs. Here are my 3 keys to the game:

RG3's confidence – We all saw Robert Griffin III not look like himself in week 1. His footwork was off, causing him to be inaccurate. There's no reason to believe that had anything to do with anything but his confidence in his knee. The offense looked much better late in the game. If Griffin is able to trust himself and make the plays we know he can make, Washington's offense should be effective.

Green Bay's offensive line – It's well documented that Mike McCarthy doesn't like to give his tackles help in pass protection. He might not have a choice against the Redskins. The Packers start rookie Eric Bakhtiari on the left and Don Barclay on the right. Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan form one of the better pass rushing tandems in the league. Aaron Rodgers is the Packers' offense, and keeping him upright will be paramount if the Pack expect to win their home opener.

Washington Secondary – On the stat sheet, they didn't play poorly, but on the field, they left a lot to be desired. They're not going to stop Rodgers from finding receivers, but they must avoid the big play. There's nothing more demoralizing for an opposing defense in Green Bay than hearing “Bang on the Drum All Day” after a 60 yard bomb. Everyone must play their assignment and make the tackle when the receiver catches the ball.

I like the Packers to take this game in a close contest. The Redskins offense should be much better, but the defense will see another up-tempo offense. Granted, Green Bay is a little slower, but I can't trust the secondary. Packers win 31-27.

Hashim Horne, NFL Junkie
Twitter:  @_SoundTheHorne

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