Morning Buzz: Can wounded Lions stop Rodgers?

Aaron Nagler
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Welcome to your Morning Buzz, rounding up news and views regarding the Green Bay Packers from around the web and here at Grab a strong cup of coffee and get caught up on everything you need to know about the Packers.

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) greets Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen.

Find everything you need to know about the Packers’ final opponent for the 2016 regular season in Bob McGinn’s Detroit Lions scouting report.

In two of the past three games the Green Bay Packers have shredded the elite defensive backfields of the Minnesota Vikings and Seattle Seahawks.

In those two games, the Packers scored 76 points, Aaron Rodgers posted passer ratings of 136.6 and 150.8 and Jordy Nelson caught four touchdown passes.

When the Packers play the Detroit Lions on Sunday night at Ford Field, the Lions will be missing not only their nickel back but also probably their top cornerback at a position that wasn’t strong even at the start of the season. How the Lions handle their deficiencies in back-end personnel could well decide the NFC North Division championship game.

Eric Baranczyk and Pete Dougherty take a look at the tape from Saturday’s game against the Vikings and opine on what makes the connection between Aaron Rodgers and Jordy Nelson so effective.

As they write:

What stands out is that Rodgers and Nelson are operating on another plane as far as timing and the ability to hook up when a play breaks down or requires an improvised throw. It’s a testament to their instincts after nine seasons working together and the athletic skills that have to come together to make those plays.

On Saturday against the Minnesota Vikings, Nelson caught nine of his 11 targets for 154 yards and two touchdowns. That, by the way, made the Rodgers-Nelson combo good for a passer rating of 158.3, the maximum.

You can tell Rodgers is looking for Nelson, especially when plays break down. And it’s not that they’re hitting on big plays — their 60-yard pass that essentially won the game at Chicago last week notwithstanding – but that they’re consistently finding ways to keep drives alive and to get the ball from the red zone to the end zone.

I wrote up three storylines to watch leading up to Sunday night’s showdown with the Lions:

The Packers made a move on their practice squad Tuesday:

Don’t miss Tom Silverstein and LeRoy Butler in 5 Questions and X’s & O’s this week:

'5 Questions' and 'X's and O's' with LeRoy Butler

Incidentally, I loved this bit:

Elsewhere, Bucky Brooks previews Sunday’s game for NFL Network:

The Packers got some good news in the form of the New York Giants saying they’re not resting starters vs Washington:

“That’s the only move I got!” NFL Films caught Rodgers on the sideline after Saturday’s TD run:

Mike Spofford does a great job of breaking down interesting stuff from the coaches tape for the team’s official site:

NBC has to be thrilled to have the final relevant matchup of 2016:

Jordy Nelson’s return has been a pleasant surprise to even the most die-hard fans:

Interesting look from Kevin Seifert at NFL players and coaches calling their shots, a la Rodgers' contention that the Packers could “run the table.”

There’s a chance you may see a replay of this a few times this week:

Sounds like Jim Caldwell’s season is going the opposite direction Mike McCarthy’s is:

Aaron Rodgers was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week. Some perspective:

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