The 3rd Man In

Packers vs. Jaguars: Preview, Prediction

Packers

Most consider the Green Bay Packers to be a top team in the NFC. While that likely is true, it hasn’t come without some lackluster performances and inconsistent play.

Last week, the Packers throttled an injury-depleted San Francisco 49ers team, winning 34-17. On Sunday, the Packers (6-2) will try to build on last week’s success when they welcome the Jacksonville Jaguars (1-7) to Lambeau Field.

Most expect the Packers to just roll to a comfortable victory over the Jaguars. But with crummy weather expected and the Jaguars possessing some quality talent, don’t be surprised if this game is closer than expected.

Despite their record, the Jaguars have competed in most of their games this season. But against the Packers, they will trot out a rookie backup quarterback in Jake Luton. Last week, Luton completed 26 of his 38 passing attempts for 304 yards, one touchdown, and one interception in a 27-25 loss to the Houston Texans.

If the Jaguars hope to defeat the Packers, they need to rely heavily on undrafted rookie running back James Robinson, who has been a bright spot for the Jaguars this season. Robinson has accumulated 580 yards and five touchdowns on 132 carries in eight games this season.

Luton showed encouraging results in his first NFL start last week. But he still is an unproven rookie with little experience. If the Jaguars hope to prevail, they need to feed the ball to Robinson, likely giving him at least 20 carries. This will cause the Packers to focus on the running game and should give Luton some opportunities to make plays through the air. 

This could be a trap game for the Packers. While it might be close, the Packers should manage to escape with a victory.

Prediction: Packers 31, Jaguars 23

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