Key Matchups for Each NFC North Week 7 Game
Detroit Lions (2-3) @ Atlanta Falcons (1-5) (Sun. 1:00 PM EST, FOX)
Keep D’Andre Swift involved
Everyone has made a joke about how bad Matt Patricia can be as a coach. It’d be the most Matt Patricia thing to follow up D’Andre Swift’s breakout performance by not featuring his rookie running back against a bad defense. Coming off the bye, Swift displayed his ability to be a playmaker out of the backfield.
The Falcons pass defense is horrendous. Although, that makes you believe that Kenny Golladay is in line for a big day. He certainly could be, but so could Swift. Atlanta allows nearly eight receptions per game to opposing running backs. With Kerryon Johnson being phased out of the committee, and Adrian Peterson not exactly being a receiving back, Swift should get immense volume on Sunday.
Good coaches utilize their best players. Patricia, who is on the hot seat, should recognize that Swift gives his team the best chance to win.
Green Bay Packers (4-1) @ Houston Texans (1-5) (Sun. 1:00 PM EST, FOX)
Stick to the plan and get the offense back on track
Last week’s loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers was ugly for the Packers offense. Luckily, Green Bay is facing a great bounce back candidate. The Titans racked up over 600 yards against Houston last week. Ryan Tannehill threw for 366 yards and Derrick Henry rushed for 212 yards to put up 42 points for the Titans.
Aaron Rodgers should easily have his bounce back game. Houston has no one to contain Davante Adams consistently. The pair should build back the chemistry after looking a little off in Week 6. Aaron Jones missed practice on Friday, but whether he goes, or it is a split between Jamaal Williams and A.J. Dillon, Green Bay should have no problem against Football Outsider’s 28th ranked defense against the run.
More likely than not, Green Bay will look like the offense we saw the first four weeks of the season on Sunday.
Chicago Bears (5-1) @ Los Angeles Rams (4-2) (ESPN. 8:15 PM EST, ESPN)
Make Jared Goff beat you
As good as the Bears defense has been this season, stopping the run hasn’t been a forte for them. That’s also how the Rams want to ignite their offense. Los Angeles’ three-back group currently led by Darrell Henderson, makes Jared Goff’s life a lot easier. Although in Goff’s previous two games against Chicago, his life has been far from easy.
Goff the previous two years hasn’t thrown for more than 200 yards against the Bears. Chicago currently rates as second best in the league in Football Outsiders’ passing defense DVOA. The Bears have plenty of defensive difference makers to force Goff into a few turnovers.
The Bears need to commit to stopping the run and force Goff to beat them. Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp are more than capable of making big plays. Goff had 50 of his 173 yards in last year’s win over the Bears come off one play to Kupp. Everyone has seen the rollercoaster of Goff when he’s forced to be a regular drop back passer, and Chicago needs to do everything to prevent the running game from beating them.