Last week the Green Bay Packers fell on a last second field goal, losing to the Atlanta Falcons 20-17 and snapping the Packers’ four-game winning streak. Now the San Francisco 49ers, fresh off of a Monday Night win, come to Lambeau hoping to pull an upset.
While the Atlanta game was by no means a devastating loss, the Packers now likely will not get home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs although they still can get the number two seed and a first round bye should they be able to wrestle the NFC North from the Chicago Bears.
This week, the Packers return home for the first time in four weeks to face the “underachieving” San Francisco 49ers.
I use quotation marks there because somehow the 49ers are only a game out of first place in their division despite their record of 4-7. That’s how bad the NFC West is this year. A 7-9 record could be enough to make the playoffs.
If the Packers want any motivation, it’s that. They could end up sitting at home for the playoffs with a 10-6 record while a team at 7-9 gets in.
There’s a major problem with that logic, but that’s a debate for another day.
Breaking down the 49ers
For the first time since Week 1, the Packers face a dual threat quarterback in 49ers starter Troy Smith. Since taking over for Alex Smith (no relation), Troy has provided a spark to an offense that badly needed one. Troy Smith’s running ability added a whole other dimension to an offense that already featured two talented pass catchers.