PFF Preview: Packers @ Bills, Week 15
The playoff race heats up with just three games to go as the Green Bay Packers travel to Buffalo aiming to keep their win streak alive against a Bills team that will be looking to sweep the NFC North. In the thick of it, with a trip to New England on the horizon, the Bills can ill afford to drop a game if they hope to make up ground and break their playoff drought.
The Packers aren’t exactly fighting for their playoff lives, but with a rematch against Detroit in Week 17 sure to be a tough game and a number of teams bunched at the top of the NFC, Green Bay has just as much to play for. With Aaron Rodgers and the offense running on all cylinders, it’s been the Packer defense that has been inconsistent at times, allowing a late Falcons rally last week.
Buffalo’s offense would prefer to avoid a shootout here, and there’s a good chance they will as they lean on a strong yet underrated defensive unit. Three of their defensive linemen have double digit sacks, and if they want to slow down the Packers’ offense, those totals may have to rise on Sunday.
Green Bay Packers
Randall Cobb – When targeting Cobb, Rodgers has completed 74% of his passes at 14.2 yards per completion, averaging a touchdown every seven catches and a QB rating of 143.7. Cobb has 153 more yards from the slot than the next highest receiver.
Corey Linsley – An excellent return so far from a rookie fifth-round pick, Linsley’s +8.4 run blocking grade puts him at sixth among centers. He’ll face arguably the toughest matchup of the season in Marcell Dareus who sports an impressive +18.5 grade in run defense.
Julius Peppers – In a bit of a lull since his dominant performance against the Bears in Week 10, he’s nonetheless been consistent, recording either a hit or sack in 11 games this season. With a date against Seantrel Henderson, that could soon be 12.
Sammy Watkins – Watkins has to be licking his chops after seeing what Julio Jones did to the Green Bay defense last week. Averaging over eight targets per game, he’s second among rookie receivers with 106 on the season.
Kyle Williams – Should the Bills decide to play contain with their outside rushers, they are well set up to get an interior pass rush. Williams has the best Pass Rushing Productivity of any defensive tackle (10.0), but he’ll have his work cut out for him with one the best pass-blocking guards in Josh Sitton.
Corey Graham – A quiet offseason signing on a modest contract, Graham has exceeded all expectation in Buffalo. Surrendering completion on less than half of his targets, quarterback’s throwing in his direction have a combined passer rating of 51.4.
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