2014 Green Bay Packers Opponents and Schedule Highlights
by Aaron Smith - 4/8/2014
The Green Bay Packers managed to sneak into the playoffs last year, but the 2013 season didn't really go as planned for Green Bay. Aaron Rodgers was injured for much of the year, and without Rodgers this team isn't even close to the same. The Packers took their lumps when Rodgers was out, but with a healthy franchise quarterback under center this is still a team that is one of the best in the NFL.
They come into the 2014 season as the clear favorite in the NFC North. The Packers now have a running game with Eddie Lacy and Johnathan Franklin sharing the load. If the Packers can continue to get more of a balance to their offense, opponents will really struggle to slow them down. The Packers defense still needs to improve, but Clay Matthews should be back in time for the start of the season.
Let's take a look at the Packers 2014 opponents and schedule highlights. The NFL will release schedule dates and games times later in April, but we do know who the Packers will have to play. We'll start with the team's eight road games and finish with their eight home games.
2014 Green Bay Packers Opponents: Road Schedule
At Chicago: The Packers and Bears have a fierce rivalry on the gridiron, but it has been the Packers who have had the upper hand in this rivalry in the recent past. Green Bay has won four straight games against the Bears at Soldier Field. It seems as if Rodgers and company have had Jay Cutler and the Bears number of late.
At Detroit: This is another NFC North rivalry, but it's been awfully one-sided of late. The Packers have beaten the Lions in 15 of the last 17 meetings between these two. Detroit did win 40-10 in their home game against the Packers last season.
Minnesota had a rough year last year, but they'll have a new look in 2014. Mike Zimmer has been a great defensive coordinator for many years, and I expect
the Vikings to be much more competitive this year. This isn't a game that the Packers should overlook.
At New Orleans: Traveling to the Superdome is a tough task for any teams. New Orleans is 33-13 against the spread in their last 46 home games as a favorite. New Orleans will likely be favored in this matchup. The Saints are 12-3 ATS in their last 15 night home games. This will be a marquee matchup, so don't be surprised if this is a night game.
At Tampa Bay: Tampa Bay went 4-12 in 2013, and the Bucs will have Lovie Smith leading the way on the sidelines this year. Smith has tons of familiarity with the Packers from his days in Chicago as the Bears coach. Tampa Bay has pieces to work with on defense, but their offense has a lot of room for improvement.
At Buffalo: Buffalo hasn't been very good at home against teams with a winning record in the past few seasons. In fact, the Bills are just 13-24 ATS in their last 37 home games against a team with a winning record. There are lots of questions about the Bills franchise, and this is certainly one of the Packers easier road games.
At Miami: The Dolphins have been a difficult team to get a good read on in the last couple seasons. They have some talented players, but chemistry has been poor. The Dolphins are 2-13 ATS in their last 15 games as a 3.5-point favorite or more. The underdog is a staggering 51-22 ATS in the Dolphins last 73 games.
At Seattle: Playing at CenturyLink Field in Seattle isn't an easy task for anyone. Seattle is 25-10 ATS in their last 35 home games as a favorite. Packers fans likely still have nightmares about the last time the Packers played in Seattle. That was the last game for the replacement referees in the 2012 season. What a joke that was!
2014 Green Bay Packers Opponents: Home Schedule
Chicago: The Packers lost at home to the Bears last November, but that was the game where Rodgers was hurt, and he only played a few snaps. The Packers offense was a complete disaster the rest of the game. Green Bay threw for only 113 yards in that contest.
Detroit: The Detroit Lions have lost 23 games in a row at Lambeau Field. The last time Detroit left Green Bay with a victory was 1991. Matt Stafford was three years old at that time. Barry Sanders was the running back for the Lions in that game. When the Lions and Packers meet at Lambeau this year, you'll definitely hear plenty about this streak!
Minnesota: Minnesota and Green Bay played to a 26-26 tie in Green Bay last year. The Packers were without Rodgers in that one, but the fact that they came away with a tie instead of a loss was big for the NFC North final standings.
Atlanta: The Falcons were one of the biggest disappointments in the NFL last season. Green Bay has come out on top the last three times these teams met. That includes the Packers massive 48-21 in the 2011 playoffs at Atlanta.
Carolina: Carolina's stingy defense makes them a difficult matchup. The Panthers will want to control the clock with their running game and keep Rodgers and the Packers offense off the field here. Green Bay hasn't hosted the Panthers since 2008.
New England: The New England Patriots have been the best road team in the league over the past decade. New England is 55-34-3 ATS since 2003 away from home. This game will get lots of attention, and a primetime scheduling spot should be expected here.
New York Jets: Green Bay is going to be favored when they host the New York Jets, and that's been a good thing for Packers backers in the recent past. The Packers are 24-13-1 ATS in their last 38 home games as a favorite.
Philadelphia: Chip Kelly did a nice job in his first year with the Eagles. The Eagles have actually been much better on the road than at home of late. Philadelphia is 39-29-1 ATS away from home since 2006. This is another tricky home game on this year's schedule for the Packers.
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Read more articles by Aaron Smith
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