Green Bay Packers at Philadelphia Eagles
As the losses pile up on the Packers, who have dropped six of their last seven, it’s getting tougher to believe in quarterback Aaron Rodgers and his optimistic speeches.
Seemingly on the brink of a turnaround after a victory over the Cowboys, Green Bay flopped as a 3.5-point home favorite in a 27-17 loss to the Titans. Rodgers was a big part of the problem by making inaccurate throws and questionable decisions. The running attack was ineffective, partly because the Packers fell behind early, but offensive play calling was again too much about the pass and not enough about the run (39 pass attempts, 19 rushing attempts). Rodgers has taken turns throwing coaches and teammates under the bus after some disappointing losses the past two seasons, yet he’s playing nowhere near the elite level the team needs.
The slump the Eagles have hit might prove to be a good thing in the long run. After starting 8-0 and taking a loss to Washington, Philadelphia (9-1) rebounded with a 17-16 win at Indianapolis. Jalen Hurts passed for 190 yards, rushed for 86 and accounted for two touchdowns, but it was an erratic performance by the offense in general and the Eagles were lucky to win.
At least, the past two games are a wake-up call for Philadelphia. It could also be true that the Eagles were overhyped while beating weak opponents and they had become overrated in the betting market. The Philadelphia defense did its job by limiting the Colts to 284 total yards and giving Hurts an opportunity to stage a fourth-quarter comeback.
Green Bay (4-7) is on the ropes and ready to be knocked out of the playoff picture. Will the Packers pack it in or rally? Rodgers’ declining play is not inspiring hope in a rally. While it’s always tempting to take Rodgers as a significant underdog — and he delivered in a similar spot against Dallas — this is not the MVP version of Rodgers. As a 7-point favorite, Philadelphia is probably a solid teaser play.