For Green Bay Packers, no stretch of four games looks more difficult in 2020 than the quartet of matchups coming out of the team’s Week 5 bye.
In accordance with a win percentage model created by NFL.com’s Cynthia Frelund, four toughest games of the Packers comes this season against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 6, the Houston Texans in Week 7, the Minnesota Vikings in Week 8 and the San Francisco 49ers in Week 9. Besides, in week 1, Packers vs Vikings match also going to be one of the toughest game.
The model considers all four games to be essentially a coin flip, with the underdogs of the Packers in three of the games and only little bit favored against the Texans.
With the Vikings’ visit in Week 8, three games out of four will be played away from Lambeau Field, providing the only home game during the four-game stretch.
Although many things can and will change during the course of the season, the four games look daunting on paper.
The Buccaneers added tight end Rob Gronkowski and quarterback Tom Brady to a team which won five of its last eight games in 2019. The Texans won 10-6 in the AFC South and advanced to the AFC Divisional Round. The Vikings won a playoff game in New Orleans finished with 10-6. The 49ers beat the Packers decisively twice in 2019 and won the NFC title, both times in San Francisco.
The travel will not be easy. During back-to-back weeks, The Packers face long road trips to Houston and Tampa Bay and then, after one game in Green Bay– must go to San Francisco on a short week for a Thursday night game.
The Packers, however, while get the benefit of a week off before the tough stretch, they’ll have to play 12 straight games also without a week off to complete the season.
In determining the difficulty of a schedule, opposing quarterbacks must always be considered. The Packers will play Deshaun Watson, Brady, Jimmy Garoppolo and Kirk Cousins during the four-game stretch coming out of the bye. Brady is known as the most accomplished quarterback of all-time, Cousins and Watson were both Pro Bowlers in 2020 and Garoppolo is the captain of one of the toughest offenses in football to defend. It’s not thoroughly a murder’s row of quarterbacks, but, with a recent track record of production, all four are experienced starters.
There are many coaches, like former Packers coach Mike McCarthy, like to divide or break down each season into quarters. Below is the Packers schedule by quarter:
First quarter: at Vikings, vs. Lions, at Saints, vs. Falcons
Second quarter: at Buccaneers, at Texans, vs. Vikings, at 49ers
Third quarter: vs. Jaguars, at Colts, vs. Bears, vs. Eagles
Fourth quarter: at Lions, vs. Panthers, vs. Titans, at Bears
All the four quarters will present challenge, but it’s clear that the second quarter seems to be the most difficult.
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