NFL Wire News

Pride percolating, Packers peek ahead to Panthers


The Sports Xchange

GREEN BAY, Wisc. — Here’s a comforting source of information for Packers fans who are convinced the one and only loss the team has incurred thus far is a precursor for more disappointment this season: Green Bay hasn’t lost two straight games with Aaron Rodgers at quarterback since early in the 2010 season.

Of course, Packers backers shouldn’t need any reminding about how that season splendidly ended.

With winning another Super Bowl title still in their sights, Green Bay is looking to rebound this week. Putting their deflating 29-10 defeat at the Denver Broncos behind them, the Packers (6-1) have the Carolina Panthers squarely on their mind.

“I think we all have pride in ourself and in our team,” receiver Randall Cobb said Wednesday. “That was an embarrassing loss (Sunday night). We’re just ready to move on to the next week. We’re ready to get to Sunday.”

Cobb and his teammates, many of whom put it on themselves for why the Packers played poorly in the prime-time matchup with the Broncos, know redemption can easily be attained by handing the Panthers their first loss.

“We know it’s a good opponent, and we have an opportunity to go to their place and get a quality win – a huge win,” defensive back Micah Hyde said. “It would mean a lot in our conference, and that’s the only thing we’re setting our eyes on right now.”

Indeed, just as fast as the Packers fell from the perch in the NFC by getting wiped off the field by the Broncos, they can be right back in the same lofty position if they knock off the 7-0 Panthers.

The fight for the No.1 seed and home-field advantage in the NFC bracket of the playoffs just might come down to whoever wins Sunday afternoon at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte. No matter it’s only Week 9 of the 17-week regular season.

“(Playing) these two games, especially on the road, (against) two great teams, it’s going to be a test for us, a test of our mettle if you want to call it,” said Packers linebacker Julius Peppers, who will be having a Carolina homecoming after playing the first eight of his 14 pro seasons with the Panthers.

Besides having a defense that is smarting from allowing 500 or more yards in each of the last two games, Green Bay has an offense that is motivated to finally ace a test after weeks of enduring sporadic failures.

Cobb referenced how “a whole lot of noise” has picked up by way of criticism leveled at an Aaron Rodgers-led unit that imploded against the Broncos. The Packers put up all of 140 yards on a night when their receivers simply couldn’t get open for their star quarterback, who threw for a career-worst 77 yards for an entire game.

“We’ve heard it before. We’ve heard it in the past. It’s nothing new,” Cobb said. “Every time we lose, it’s on us. We take pride in what we do. That’s part of it. We’ve heard the noise before. I’m sure at some point we’ll hear it again.”

They just don’t want it to happen so soon again.

SERIES HISTORY: 13th regular-season meeting. Packers lead series, 8-4. Green Bay has won the past two meetings going back to 2011, including a 38-17 rout at Lambeau Field last season. The Packers have won three of the last four games played at Carolina since 2001 and are 5-2 on the road against the Panthers. The teams’ first-ever meeting came in their only postseason matchup. The Packers rolled to a 30-13 win over the second-year Panthers at Green Bay in the NFC Championship during the 1996 season.

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