The Green Bay Packers head west to take on the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC Championship Game today. The game is scheduled for a 3:05 p.m. (EST) start time and it will be televised nationally on FOX. Currently the odds for the game have the Seahawks favored to reach the Super Bowl with a win.
Seattle and Green Bay making it to this game should come as no surprise. The Packers were one of the best offensive teams in football all year and even when Aaron Rodgers has been banged up, Green Bay still finds a way to get it done. Unlike past seasons they've been able to establish a running game with Eddie Lacey and even though it's not the most formidable running attack in the league, it's been good enough to allow Rodgers and the Pack to move it down the field consistently.
The Seahawks have the best rushing attack in the game and parlayed with their amazing defense, they're back in the conference title game. Seattle keeps it simple — have the best defense in football, score points when they can and keep the football away from their opponents. The Seahawks ranked fifth-best in the league this season in time of possession and the overwhelming amount of home field advantage they have is well-known. Only Dallas found a way to win in Seattle this season and Green Bay will have to take as much as they can from that Cowboys win and apply it here today. Seattle has won eight straight playoff games in their own building.
Rodgers, even if he is banged up as it's been reported, can still dice up the best defenses in the game. Seattle is going to have to get consistent pressure in his face to throw off the timing routes and force him to move around the pocket. If he does have leg injuries it won't be hard to see if Seattle can keep pressuring him. If that causes Green Bay's offense to sputter out of control or Rodgers committing turnovers, Seattle will have a huge advantage in this game.
A win by Seattle would put them in a second consecutive Super Bowl, the first team do accomplish the feat since New England in 2003 and 2004. Russell Wilson has guided the Seahawks to this point in the season and in his career Seattle has led in every game at some point. They are going to want to run the football in this game today, but Green Bay has done a decent job against the rush this season, allowing an average of 86.4 rushing yards and 3.6 per carry over the final eight regular season games.
This is just the second time in a conference title game that a team with the highest-scoring offense (Green Bay, 30.4 points per game) against the NFL's top defense. Seattle allowed opponents to score just 15.9 points per game this season, the best mark in the NFL. Green Bay hasn't been the best team away from home this season, going just 4-4, and although they are accustomed to playing in bad weather this time of year, winning in Seattle just seems like a very tall task. The Seahawks are going to run the football with Marshawn Lynch and try and beat up that Packer defense. Wilson and the gang aren't known for throwing the football a ton because they don't have to — if Green Bay can stop the run and force Wilson to beat them through the air, the've got a chance.
But, in the end Seattle is just too good, especially at home — in January.
Free Pick: Seattle 28, Green Bay 24
Conference Championship Game Previews
What pro football bettors need to know about betting both the Green Bay at Seattle and Indianapolis at New England games on Sunday (1/18/15) – a free pick from Pregame.com's Teddy Covers with added insight from Pauly Howard.
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