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Defensive front needs best that Julius Peppers, Mike Daniels have got

It's crunch time for Packers fans, too


Dalton from La Crosse, WI

Do you expect Richard Sherman to shadow Jordy or will he play specifically on his normal side?

Before the injury to Earl Thomas, I would have said he'll stay on one side. I still think that, but now I'm not so sure.

Josh from Green Bay, WI

Nick Perry being ruled out for Sunday really hurts. Who needs to have a great game in his place in order to stop the run and pressure the QB?

Wes and I talked about this on Unscripted. With Matthews also hindered, I think a lot falls on Julius Peppers in this game on the outside. Mike Daniels also needs to play big on the inside. Your veteran stars have to be difference-makers in games like these.

Daniel from Copenhagen, Denmark

If you had to provide our opponent with the key to beating the Packers, what would you say that would be?

Keep Rodgers in the pocket and tackle well.

DJ from Bristol, WI

The Packers started last year 6-0 but finished 4-6. This year could very well be the opposite. How about that for some intrigue?

Well, the easy part is out of the way.

John from Denver, CO

The Packers' defense routinely held coverage in the secondary only to allow Osweiler to scramble for a first down. What can the Packers do differently against the much more mobile Wilson?

Rush with discipline. Stay in your lanes. Both Wentz and Osweiler the last two weeks scrambled for more yards than I expected. Wilson can't be allowed those escape routes. Make them execute their passing game at a high level in these conditions. If they can, then adjust.

Todd from Carson City, NV

Props to Jayrone Elliott – an outstanding player and an even more outstanding member of the Packers community. Sweetness is surely smiling down on Jayrone and all the other nominees.

Without a doubt.

Patrick from Fort Collins, CO

Is time real?

Man, that was just bizarre.

Dave from Saint Peters, MO

The advantages in snow of northern teams seem fabricated after last game. The only advantage I saw was due to the cleats, which speaks more to the equipment managers than the players. Did you see any decisive advantage in the snow for the Packers?

You didn't see the fumble on Osweiler's second completion of the day, and all those dropped passes from his receivers as the game went on?

Tony from River Falls, WI

Any thoughts on what the NFL can do to continue promoting safety but improve the viewership issues?

I prefer to separate the two, somewhat. I've said this before and I'll say it again, the safety issues require more officials. I don't know how many, but have rules officials and safety officials. They're asking these guys to watch for too much, so the games are dominated by replay. Focus their job responsibilities more and I think replays could be reduced. I think the ads that come on before/during a replay review are the most upsetting for the viewership, because often there hasn't been a change of possession or a score. Can those be eliminated before the next round of TV contracts? I don't think the league can charge the rights fees it does to the networks and then tell them how many ads they can sell, but if the ratings drop is going to affect ad rates for next season, the networks may have decisions to make.

Duncan from Fort McMurray, Canada

With the Cowboys' next games being Giants, Buccaneers and Lions, I say if you're not rooting for the Cowboys in all three you are overthinking it.

That's how I'm leaning as well.

Mike from Mount Prospect, IL

I watched the replay of the KC game. Atlanta was gouging the Chiefs defense. And then, Eric Berry made a play. One guy. One play. In the NFL, so often it comes down to one guy making one play.

No one wanted to listen to me when the first two in the four-game losing streak were exactly those type of one-play-away games. It's the nature of the league.

Jason from Austin, TX

We all know that if you have an elite QB you can overcome a lot of other deficiencies on offense, but what about defense? What position on defense can make that same difference if you have an elite player at that position? The player/position that comes to my mind is Ray Lewis/ILB.

These days it's a dominant pass-rusher or shutdown corner. Forced to choose, probably pass-rusher. One who can't be blocked or requires constant double-teaming can make an entire defense look different.

Joe from Asbury, IA

I know, you guys all say it starts with stopping the run. However, I think the key to beating the Seahawks is going to be keeping Graham in check. He looks to be back to his old form, and the Packers have had trouble with tight ends all season. If Jimmy has a big game, I think it's lights out. Can Thomas and Hyde keep him in check?

You aren't the only one to bring up Graham as the key or X-factor or whatever you want to call it. Given what the Packers have put on film against other tight ends, Wilson won't look too far away from Graham. He won't be just one player's job. That makes the reads too easy. Thomas, Hyde, Burnett, they'll all work against him. The Packers used Matthews on him at times last season.

Lori from Brookfield, WI

Dear Spoff, I really appreciate your WYMM spot, along with the comments. The videos of the plays and the explanations help those of us who love the game but never played it to understand more about what happens on the field. How do you decide which plays to feature? Do you notice all the things you comment on as the plays are happening in real time?

Thanks for your interest in the segment. I know the format change didn't please a lot of people, but I'm doing my best. It's a combination of things. I might see something in real time and want to take a closer look at it the next day. Or I might wonder how something happened, like the fourth-and-1 stop vs. Houston, and find a factor nobody ever mentioned. I had always heard the expression "the film doesn't lie." Doing WYMM for five years now, I understand much better what that means.

Caleb from Eau Claire, WI

Guys, certain websites post articles questioning (if not openly ripping) Aaron Rodgers' leadership, yet I hear tales of him staying up late in his hotel room to go over the playbook with third-stringers and UFAs. That speaks volumes to me. What are your impressions of our QB as a leader of men?

If I were in that locker room, I'd be a better player because of him.

Toz from Golden Bay, Australia

Hey guys, just wanted to point something out to everyone. Major sporting title droughts broken in 2016: Cavs – first title in 46-year history; Cubs – first World Series title since 1908; Leicester City – first Premier League title in 131-year history; Western/Footscray Bulldogs – first Australian Football League premiership since 1954; Cronulla Sharks – first National Rugby League title in their 50th season. I haven't given up on the Packers' chances for this season. In fact, I feel like our guys are clicking really nicely at the moment. But I think we all need to prepare ourselves for the possibility of a Lions Super Bowl this season. Matt Stafford's group is reminding me of an older Brett Favre-era Packers team – doing just enough to put the game in his hands at the end. They'll just keep winning if he doesn't throw a killer pick in the last two minutes. P.S. Lake Erie Monsters also won their first Calder Cup.

If only I hadn't been talked out of betting on Footscray and Cronulla.

Richard from Farmington Hills, MI

Last year my son and I took our annual sojourn to Lambeau for the Seattle game. That was fresh off the 2014 playoff debacle and the crowd was absolutely electric. Loudest I had ever experienced. I would expect no less on Sunday.

That's partly why I started this conversation two days ago saying this game should bring out the best the fans can give. Last year's Seahawks crowd was incredibly intense.

Matt from Minocqua, WI

I would like to clarify, with Spoff, my call for us fans to raise our game. Get behind these guys and give them the home-field advantage that they thrive off of, us in the stands, boosting their confidence. I'm not necessarily talking the ra-ra standing/screaming all game as has been suggested, rather cheering and supporting. No boos. Not for our guys. AR stated it yesterday, in a sense. GB fans, bring our "A" game. Do our part. Cheer and support our guys who have a good "juice" of confidence going right now. Go Pack.

I edited Matt's thoughts to convey all that really matters now. A lot of frustration has been expressed this season. No expression of frustration will help beat the Seahawks. There's been plenty of discussion about the fans this week, but that's done now, too. It's crunch time for everyone, fans included.

Willie from Hayward, WI

As fans we do not have an appreciation for what it really takes to prepare for a game each week in the NFL. It is a job for the men in the locker room. Being around the Packers organization can you tell if there is "something in the air" that is different come crunch time?

You hear things sometimes, like more guys coming into the building on their off day Tuesday to watch extra film, stuff like that. But I'm not around the players much when they're actually working, so it's hard to say. To me, it's not exactly the same vibe, but this feels like the biggest regular-season game around here since the 2013 finale in Chicago.

Shane from Iowa City, IA

I can't help but feel like this game is one of those where Coach McCarthy will have the team extremely focused and prepared to win. Don't be surprised to see the Packers come out and look like a true playoff contender, led by Aaron Rodgers.

Works for me.

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