Packers Sunday Night Primer: 3 Things to Watch
Patrick D. Starr
It feels great to be undefeated and especially when it is your NFL team, the Houston Texans, and having another primetime game on Sunday night against the Green Bay Packers. There are so many story lines heading into this game and it starts with the injury front.
The Packers are already without wide receiver Greg Jennings and running back Cedric Benson for the game. While nose tackle B.J. Raji, and tight ends Jermichael Finley and D.J. Williams will be game time decisions Sunday night. Those injury questions for the Packers could leave some considerable holes for them during game time.
As for the Texans it will be interesting to see how the Texans defense does without their leader in Brian Cushing. The first real adversity the Texans have faced all season, when it comes to a big injury, the other 10 starters need to pick up their game even more. No matter how the Texans look at their current situation, they are still in great shape in the AFC South and in the Conference to continue to make their push towards the playoffs.
Claire talked to Acme Packing Co. about this weeks Packers game in "Know Your Opponent."
Charles looked at Texans players to watch this week against the Packers.
We looked at the All-22 plays of Week 5 that caught our attention.
The Texans also signed free agent linebacker Barrett Ruud and we asked a Buccaneers Site about their former player.
Three Things to Watch
1. I think the play of Johnathan Joseph against the New York Jets caused some concern for Texans fans, and that is hard to believe. Is it his lingering groin injury or was it just an off night? Players have games they would like to forget and Joseph's was last week, and now a passing team comes to town. Joseph will probably have the match up against Jordy Nelson and follow him around the field in coverage. Being an impact player is what the Texans signed him for, and it is time for Joseph to get back to his old self this Sunday night.
2. A big burden falls on the shoulders Bradie James and Tim Dobbins now with Brian Cushing on the shelf for the season. This is more than performance on the field, this is about how they will handle the expectations from their teammates to fill the void in the middle. Realize there will be a drop off in play in the middle, but it will be up to Dobbins more than anyone to make an impact in the middle. He understands the scheme and has some toughness about him that will be on display on Sunday.
3. Ben Tate has to show up this week to help the run game. Sidelined by a toe issue last Monday, Tate has to get back on track to help take away carries from Arian Foster and lighten his workload. He is on schedule to return on Sunday night and be in the back field when needed. Tate is a great back who can help keep the Texans running game going and have someone fresh running the football. It would be good to see Tate make some noise on the ground and help control the clock on Sunday night , but most importantly keep the Packers offense on the sideline. Not to mention some work load off of Foster.