NFC Championship Preview!
Words by Corey Benham
On Sunday the NFC Championship Game will feature two 13-3 teams battling it out for the NFC spot in the SuperBowl when the Green Bay Packers head to Levi’s stadium to face the San Francisco 49ers.
For most NFL fans this is kind of a surprise championship game, because the Packers are being led by rookie head coach Matt LeFleur, and just last season the 49ers were a 3-13 team. However both teams are just one win away from a SuperBowl appearance.
The Packers haven’t exactly stood out as a powerhouse this season like the 49ers have, ranking just 18th in offence & defence. This isn’t necessarily a major factor as Green Bay still have future Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers as their starting QB. As long as the Packers have Rodgers as their QB, they will always be a threat to an opposing teams defence, especially in big games.
In previous years the Packers haven’t really had many weapons around Rodgers. Now though, they have key players including WR Davante Adams who had 83 receptions for 997 yards & 5 TDs. Adams can takeover any game against any defence with his big play ability. They also have RBs Aaron Jones & Jamaal Williams, if they are going to go out on the road and beat San Francisco they are going to have to do everything they can to get the ball into these key players hands. If they can produce big on offence Sunday then they have a very good chance of advancing to the SuperBowl, however it won’t be easy against a very good 49ers defence that has performed at a high level all season.
When it comes too the 49ers they have been a team to fear throughout the 2019 season, this is down to the great defence in San Francisco. Ranking 2nd in the NFL. They field arguably the best front seven in the entire NFL that features DT DeForest Buckner, DE Nick Bosa, DE Dee Ford (if healthy) & DE Arik Armstead. Just to name a few.
Those players are going to make it extremely hard for the Green Bay offence to move the ball on the ground with their solid run stopping capabilities & when it comes to their pass rush, they are going to be in Aaron Rodgers face all game. Rookie DE Nick Bosa is going to be terrorising the Packers O-line from his very first down till the final whistle. If he and other pass rushers DeForest Buckner & Arik Armstead are able to add extra pressure this is going to make it extremely hard for Rodgers too do anything in the passing game.
Let’s not forget the 49ers offence has QB Jimmy Garoppolo one of the games best young quarterbacks surrounded by playmakers TE George Kittle & WR Deebo Samuel, backed by one of the league’s most complete backfields featuring RBs Tevin Coleman, Matt Breida & Kyle Juszczyk. This offence has the option to either dominate time of possession or air the ball for big yards, making them just as dangerous as the defence. This Packers defence has definitely improved in recent years with the additions of OLB Za'Darius Smith, DB Adrian Amos & 2018 1st round CB Jaire Alexander who can all make clutch plays for this team and put them in positions to win the game, however i just feel this 49ers offence is just going to be too much for them too handle.
Although both teams come into this game 13-3 I can only see one team advancing to the SuperBowl and that is the 49ers, it’s going to be a great game to watch with big plays made on both sides of the ball for both teams. However the 49ers have more weapons on offence and defence to see them through.
My score prediction is 31-17 in an emphatic win for the 49ers.
Key players to watch out for:
Green Bay Packers - WR Davante Adams & OLB Za'Darius Smith
San Francisco 49ers - DE Nick Bosa & TE George Kittle