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Inbox: It's the ultimate chess game

It’ll be interesting to see what the crowd looks like Sunday


Jesus from El Paso, TX

So you're saying there's a chance?

There's always a chance. That's why you play the games. Good morning!

Mike from Lyons, OH

It has been brought up plenty already, but let's take a trip back to the 2012 game against the Texans. Rodgers came in and dominated, but what really struck me was at one point in that game, he scrambled for what he thought was a touchdown. It ended up being called back for holding, but after that scramble Rodgers got up, spiked the ball, and gave one of the most enthusiastic championship belt celebrations I've seen. Aaron Rodgers played angry that game. If he plays like that Sunday, I like our chances.

As I said on "Unscripted," throw the records out on Sunday. The Packers aren't worried about them and I'm sure the Rams are focused on bigger goals. To your point, I remember that Texans game in 2012. Their offense was humming with Matt Schaub and Arian Foster, and that defense was arguably the best in the league at that time. Rodgers proved everyone wrong. It's what he does.

Brian from Springfield, IL

I am not understanding the negative vibe about the Rams game from the Inbox and fans. We should be excited about the opportunity to play one of the best teams in the league. It is an opportunity to show how good this team can be. Win or lose, lessons the team can learn from playing a good team are so much more important than if they play lesser teams. If the Packers are going to win it all, they will have to play teams of this caliber at some point, and they will get to play a game next week.

If the Packers are going to get where they want this season, they have to beat the Los Angeles Rams and New England Patriots of the NFL sooner or later. That's the facts, Jack. The season is young, but what better time than now to see where the bar is? Also, while it is a road game, it'll be interesting to see what that crowd looks like Sunday at the Coliseum. I've heard a lot of Packers fans are making the trek.

Ben from Pensacola, FL

The closest way to stop the run game is to commit bodies to it. With Josh Jackson, Jaire Alexander and Kevin King growing, they may be able to take some receivers out of the game in spots. If they can grow to that potential, watch out. More faces in the QB's face or in the path of the ball-carrier forces more throws with better chances of INTs.

The Rams already have played the better part of two games without Cooper Kupp, but I'm curious to see how an offense that typically lives in the same personnel group responds to his absence Sunday. By all indications, the Packers will have all of their cornerbacks available. As Spoff wrote Thursday, **that’s a big coup for the Packers’ defense**. Also, if they can drop Ha Ha Clinton-Dix into the box more and live with only one safety high, it could be the right recipe to neutralize the Rams' running hijinks. It's the ultimate chess game.

Todd from Owasso, OK

Games aren't played on paper. They're played inside televisions and radios.

Finally some rationality.

Matthew from High Point, NC

Good morning my brethren to the North! How long before one of those batted balls from the D-line gets popped up to another Packer? Calling one this week! Let's get it! GO PACK GO! (Can you tell I'm fired up?)

It's bound to happen eventually, especially with how often Nick Perry and Kenny Clark have gotten their mitts on passes so far this season.

Estillac from Belem, Brazil

I can't help thinking that the next five games are going to define our season. Let's hope we're still strong playoff contenders by December! But, yeah, I know, just beat the Rams, right?

There's only one marble on the line Sunday and that's the only one that matters at the moment.

Bill from Bloomfield Hills, MI

Do the Rams' defensive strengths lead you to predict any particular changes to our running back rotation?

I don't know whether the Packers will tailor anything specifically to Los Angeles, but I liked the approach they took against the 49ers with Aaron Jones starting. Not only does it get an explosive runner on the field to help the offense start fast, but it also made sense to get Jones involved early given how often the offense turns to Jamaal Williams and Ty Montgomery in two-minute situations. I'd like to see them build on that against the Rams, who are 12th in the league against the run. After all, it's the only major category they aren't top 10 in.

Russell from Henrico, VA

It is entirely possible the Pack could play well and lose the next two weeks against excellent teams on the road. Not too sure that much doom and gloom should be attached. Even with two losses the Pack could still go 3-1 versus the NFC West and AFC East. Miami and Arizona are certainly win opportunities. Take care of business in the division. It's still 16 games, not the order they are played.

As I've told you guys before, I don't believe in must-win games before Week 11. But it certainly meets all the requirements for a this-would-be-a-nice-one-to-win-now…game.

Cary from Sioux Falls, SD

Insiders, I know you have said that Jimmy Graham is doing everything the Packers have asked of him, but this far into the season are you surprised that he has only one touchdown reception?

Graham said after the 49ers game it would be nice to get in the end zone, but he's making a difference regardless of whether it shows up in the touchdown column. Look at those packages with four tight ends the Packers have been running. Any of those passes could have just as easily gone to Graham. Instead, it helped open up Lance Kendricks for a touchdown recently. The TDs will come for No. 80. I don't think anyone inside 1265 is losing sleep over it.

Shawn from Kissimmee, FL

Wes, don't forget to pack your egg for L.A. How many eligible receivers can be on the field at one time?

Consider it packed. Five.

Jacob from Louisville, KY

When do we get Jake Kumerow back from IR? I know he won't play and probably will be taking it easy but I loved his preseason and can't wait for him to eventually play.

We're now in wait-and-see mode with players on injured reserve since teams no longer are required to designate a player to return when they're placed on IR. Kumerow and Trevor Davis are both eligible to practice, but it's all week-to-week at this point.

Daniel from Los Angeles, CA

Who do we root for in the Saints vs. Vikings game? On one hand a Vikings loss is already appreciated, but I don't want the Saints to get to 6-1 and grab that No. 2 seed from potentially us. I don't think we can have the No. 1 seed at this point unless the Rams nosedive a bit.

My general rule of thumb is root against your division until there's separation in the standings. So I'll say Saints. You never know what the rest of the season will hold, but any loss for an NFC North opponent pays dividends in the end.

Shlok from Toronto, Canada

Wes, you mentioned your opinion towards the corners, particularly Alexander, to stand out in this game, along with the O-line. I can understand why you might think so, however, are you overlooking how important run defense will be this game? A big way to have success I believe would be to defend the run first. We all know the running game sets up the pass. Thoughts?

Without question. It's part of the reason I wrote **about the fast start** Kenny Clark is off to this season and how important the defensive front will be to controlling Todd Gurley and the tempo of the game. He's leading the NFL in rushing and doesn't have a carry of more than 29 yards. What does that tell you? It says he's grinding defenses down over four quarters. The Packers must win the early downs.

Trevor from River Falls, WI

After the Friday injury report was released, I noted Breeland wasn't listed on it as questionable or anything, leading me to believe he is set to make his Packers debut Sunday. All that being said, what are some realistic expectations for a corner that hasn't been with the team for a full month coming off of a muscle injury?

I'm excited to find out and I'm sure Breeland is champing at the bit for the opportunity. He was one of the most coveted young corners on the market last spring before the issue with his heel arose. The Packers come out of the bye remarkably healthy at corner. If Breeland has to start on special teams, I also see a benefit to that given how long a layoff he's had.

Kurtis from De Pere, WI

Re: Eli in the Hall of Fame. "...Passer rating this, playoff record that..." He has slayed the dragon. Twice. He gets knighted.

Not to oversimplify the argument, but it really is that simple in my mind. Listen, the Super Bowl is a ladder. Many who try to climb it fail and never get to try again. The fall breaks them. And some are given a chance to climb and they refuse. They cling to the small victories or accolades. Illusions. Only the ladder is real. The climb is all there is. And Eli scaled it twice.

Rich from Twin Lake, MI

I think Green Bay made a big mistake letting Jordy go. He was Rodgers' go-to guy. Rodgers looks lost out there without him. If Cobb and Allison can't go again against the best team in the league, then it's over.


Trevor from Carmel, NY

I noticed what seems to be a lot of new parents around the Inbox community lately, so I wanted to share a shameless plug for **NFL Game Pass**. When the Packers have a day game, I hide my phone. I spend time with my son. When the kid is in bed, I retreat to the man cave not knowing the result and give the game my full attention (with no commercials or halftime). Maybe next year he'll be old enough to watch the games live with me. These little guys grow up too quickly. Enjoy them while you can.

That's terrific advice, especially if you're able to successfully avoid the outcome. I know I've tried to push back other duties during the week to spend time with my son before he gets his final bottle at night and we put him to bed. Priceless.

Mac from Maricopa, AZ

If the NFL did a survey of each player on every team as to where they would like to play as their childhood dream, wonder what each would look like today? How many current Packers were childhood Packer dreamers?

I don't know if Robert Tonyan would qualify as a "dreamer," but he once had a **Packers-themed birthday party (in the state of Illinois)**.

Thomas from Dunkerton, IA

When I was 10 years old I saved up cereal box tops for an Earl Morrall football. It never came. I haven't eaten Cheerios since. I feel your pain, Wes, and I hope the Ben Sheets auto is legit.

It came with a certificate of authenticity! But Sheets is more than welcome to join us here in the Inbox to confirm, if he chooses to do so.

Brett from Onalaska, WI

Even disappointed Brewers fans should be cheering for the Dodgers this weekend. If the World Series makes it to Game 5, Los Angeles area teams in MLB, the NBA, MLS, the NHL, and the NFL will all be hosting games this Sunday. To date, no city has gotten to see its teams from all those sports play at home on the same day.

Who cares? Go Sox.

Lori from Heredia, Costa Rica

So with the team flying out to Los Angeles a day early, does that mean that your plane is going out early too? Do both planes always fly on the same schedule?

More or less. However, both team planes can only leave once Spoff's private jet takes off.

Mike from Las Vegas, NV

If Spoff steals Wes's lunch, then Larry must be stealing Spoff's lunch. So the question is, who is stealing Larry's lunch?

You clearly don't know who you're talking about, so let me clue you in. Larry's lunch is not in danger, Mike. It is the danger. Two beat hacks open the cupboard, get their lunch stolen and you think that of Larry? No. The Rock is the one who knocks.

Kent from Lewiston, ID

My dad took me to the LA Coliseum in 1978 all the way from Idaho to see my first Green Bay Packers game. I respectfully submit this with tears in my eyes for that incredible memory of him and cementing forever what taking time to experience seeing the "G" on that helmet means. Memories that lasted 40 years like it was yesterday. Win or lose, if you are a Packers fan, cherish it, forever! Thank you Dad for making me a Packer backer for life. RIP

The memories do indeed make us rich. Enjoy the game, folks.