If you are not excited about this year’s Green Bay Packers team you must not be paying very close attention.
Jordy Nelson is healed up and will be ready to go to start the season.
Eddy Lacy looks to be in even better shape then he was as a rookie.
Ted Thompson added another explosive offensive weapon in free agency (Jared Cook), filled the two biggest defensive holes, DT (Kenny Clark) and ILB (Blake Martinez) and added much needed depth to the offensive line through the draft.
On top of that they have another year of experience for their very deep, talented and young WR and DB groups.
This team has all of the talent to win it all.
Now if they can just stay healthy…
Week 1: @ Jacksonville Jaguars
The Packers are very fortunate to draw this Jaguars team in the season opener before they have time to completly gel as a team.
The offense led by Blake Bortles is already becoming something special and Jacksonville may be just a year or two away from being the most talented team in the league and will most definitely be a defensive monster once their new additions build some chemistry.
Until then, this should be a fairly easy win for the Pack to open the season, as Jacksonville will most likely still be working out some major kinks at this point.
Week 2: @ Minnesota Vikings
Aaron Rodgers has flat out dominated the Vikings in Minnesota. He has thrown 13 TDs in his last 5 games there for an impressive 4-1 record.
The Grand Opening of “U.S. Bank Stadium” shouldn’t be any different, as A- Rod found his groove in the playoffs last season and should carry that over into the new year.
In their meeting last year, the Packers run game chewed up what was supposed to be a very good Minnesota front line, on the road, as Eddie Lacy ran for his first 100 yard game of the campaign.
This year should be a lot more of the same for this squad who is looking to regain the division crown.
Week 3: Detroit Lions @ GB
This could be the toughest challenge of the young season for Green Bay.
The Lions played very well against the Packers last season. They won at Lambeau Field to finally snap a 24 game road losing streak in Wisconsin and forced an Aaron Rodgers miracle with no time left on the clock in Detroit.
The Lions finished last year with a 6-2 record but will still be adjusting to life without Calvin Johnson when they come to Lambeau Field early in 2016.
That should give the Pack the advantage in this one.
Week 5: New York Giants @ GB
The Giants strongest asset at this point is their passing game behind star quarterback Eli Manning.
Unfortunately for them, the Packers have one of the best up and coming defensive secondaries in the league and their own passing game is fairly solid as well.
The Packers will be coming off an early “bye” and should have an easy time outlasting the Giants at home, in what could turn out to be a good old fashioned shootout.
Week 6: Dallas Cowboys @ GB
The Packers easily disposed of the Cowboys last season in Green Bay, as rookie corner, Damarious Randall, held superstar receiver, Dez Bryant, without a single catch for the last 3 quarters of the game after Sam Shields left with an injury.
Sure, Tony Romo should be back at full strength this season and Ezekiel Elliot will be working extra hard to justify a 4th overall pick in the draft.
However, with an even stronger defensive attack than last year, and their own offense at full force, the Packers should easily continue their recent dominance of the Cowboys.
Week 7: Chicago Bears @ GB
The Bears were able to squeak out a victory against the Packers at Lambeau field last year.
That’s the beauty of the NFC North.
You can throw out records, talent and logic, because there is never any guessing what could happen in a rivalry game between members of the “Black and Blue” division.
However, the Packers are clearly going to be the better team in 2016 and it would be a miracle if Chicago could pull off another feat like they did last year in shutting out this high powered offense for a full half.
It will most likely be another exciting finish but it seems logical to chalk up another one for the home team in this matchup.
Week 8: @ Atlanta Falcons
After starting out the 2015 season 5-0 the Falcons fell into a major collapse and failed to make the playoffs.
It’s hard to predict which one of those teams will show up next season but highly unlikely that either one of them would stand a chance against a teams as solid and deep as the Packers look to be heading into 2016.
The game is in Atlanta, but that should be just a side note to another solid victory for the Pack.
Week 9: Indianapolis Colts @ GB
Experts are trying to figure out just how good Andrew Luck can be after an injury plagued 2015.
Even if he makes a full recovery, it’s obvious the Colts front office has once again failed to put enough good young weapons or a solid defense around him.
Although Indy should be able to move the ball at times in this one, I don’t foresee their defense being able to slow down Rodgers and Lacy enough to make a major difference, especially in what should turn out to be a cold November day at Lambeau field.
Week 10: @ Tennessee Titans
This game could actually present a challenge for Green Bay. The Packers have always had difficulty against mobile quarterbacks, especially on the road, and the Titans will probably be an easy team to overlook.
Although it could come down to the wire, the difference in total talent is just too great and the Packers should once again pull out the victory.
Tennessee is a team on the rise but it will be a year or two before they can start hoping to beat the NFL’s elite teams.
Week 11: @ Washington Redskins
I’m sure the Redskins coaches will try to use this game as motivation for revenge for last year’s playoff loss.
However, anyone who watched that game knows the better team won easily and there is no logical reason to think there will be a different result this time around.
The red hot Redskins were embarrassed by a faltering Packers team on their own field and it just shows that when the Packers are focused they are nearly unstoppable no matter how many injuries they’ve racked up.
Week 12: @ Philadelphia Eagles
Historically, the Packers matchup well against the Eagles and they usually perform well on Monday Night.
What makes this game interesting though, is the fact that former Packers quarterback, Doug Pederson, is in his first year as Eagles head coach.
There is no doubt the Eagles can put up a ton of points but if they don’t find a quick solution for their defense, this game could be in the books fairly early.
Week 13: Houston Texans @ GB
The Texans have a very well established defense and an interesting young offense who could be hitting their stride at this point in the season.
The Packers may have to step it up a notch for this one but if both teams bring their “A” game, this should be a good old fashion slug fest than leans in the Packers favor at Lambeau Field in December.
Week 14: Seattle Seahawks @ GB
As of right now, the Seahawks are by far the best team on the schedule and the Pack were able to handle them fairly easily early last season.
Critics will point out that Seattle improved and the Packers digressed as the season went on, but I have a feeling it’s going to be another lonely day for the Seahawks playing in the Frozen Tundra without their 12th man.
Week 15: @ Chicago Bears
Soldier Field has basically become a home away from home for the Packers.
With Matt Forte and Martellus Bennett gone searching for greener pastures, the Packers should enjoy another successful Bear hunt in Chicago.
Week 16: Minnesota Vikings @ GB
Last year the Packers figured out in their first game against Minnesota, that the Vikings are mainly a throwback team who tries to suffocate you on defense, then submit you with the run on offense.
Green Bay had the perfect game plan for that approach at Minnesota and after winning easily, went away from it in their meeting at Lambeau.
I have a sneaking suspicion Coach McCarthy won’t make that same mistake twice.
Week 17: @ Detroit Lions
You never want to play a three game stretch against division rivals and you definitely don’t want to have to finish a stretch like that on the road.
However, I doubt the Packers will complain about playing in a dome this time of year, especially after the finish they had at Ford Field last time they were there.
I don’t think it will take another prayer to pull this one off as the Packers gear up for yet another playoff run.
We all know that reality has its way of messing up our dreams, and that the games never play out as pretty on the field as they do on paper.
The great thing about the NFL however, is that anything can happen on any given Sunday.
So throw on your cheesehead, dress yourself in your favorite jersey and let’s cheer the “Green and Gold” on to whichever perfect season they have in store for us!