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How to watch Packers vs. Buccaneers: Launch time, TV channel, live stream, key matches in the NFC Championship



Welcome to Sunday’s conference championship! Our first game featured two of the best quarterbacks of all time, with Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers hosting Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buchaners. There are, of course, other stars across the field, from Davante Adams and Aaron Jones to Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, and from Jair Alexander and Za’Darius Smith to Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul. There are even incredibly intriguing matches on the offensive and defensive fronts, as this game also includes some of the best ambulances in the league.

This must be an addictive game, so let̵

7;s split things up.

How to watch

Date: Sunday, January 24 Time: 3:05 PM ET
Location: Lambo Field (Green Bay, Wisconsin)
TV: Fox Flow: fuboTV (Try for free)
I follow: CBS Sports App

When the Buccaneers have the ball

Let’s cut out some sections of last week’s Rams-Packers preview that are just as relevant here:

Green Bay checked a pretty solid 18th in defense for DVOA this season, but more 23rd in Adjusted Line Yards, which shows that packers more often lose the battle in the trenches …

In their three losses this season, the Packers handed over 158, 173 and 140 quick yards to opponents, averaging 4.5, 5.1 and 3.8 yards of experience. The Colts organized a comeback in the second half, breaking into the field goals and tightening the defense. Tampa’s early lead came with six points and another interception returned to the 2-yard line, so only Minnesota really came out and just pushed the ball straight into Green Bay’s throat from the jump. But even the Vikings didn’t lead forever to the third quarter and took things home until Dalwin Cook handed the screen 50 yards to the house.

Could the Bucs jump to an early lead this time if they just miss Leonard Fournette and / or Aaron Jones down the Packers’ throat? The Rams tried to do it with Cam Akers, but fell behind because the defense allowed them two touchdowns and a goal on the field in the first three drives of Green Bay in the game. They managed to get Akers to take part in the rest of the way, but once you came down with two points, all your insulting rhythm was thrown out of the blow.

The Bucs tried to run early and often against the Saints last week and didn’t actually succeed. It wasn’t until they switched to a more pass-centered attack that they began to hang curved numbers on the board – but even that required a lot of help from the defense by placing them with short fields. Tom Brady didn’t exactly tear things apart, throwing just 199 yards in 33 attempts.

But the Green Bay pass defense is not as solid as the Saints’ defense. The packers have Jaire Alexander, who could potentially overshadow Mike Evans, and the combination of Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, Rashan Gary and Kenny Clark up front, but there are more places to take advantage of Green Bay coverage than New Orleans. If Alexander overshadows Evans, it puts Kevin King with Antonio Brown on the other side and Chandon Sullivan with Chris Godwin in the slot. They look like the most likely matches. Sullivan’s Godwin would be a strong advantage for the Buccaneers, as well as Rob Gronkowski and Cameron Brate against one of the linebacks that the Bucs can get them to match. (The less obvious advantage is if packers use their coverage guarantees.)

However, using any of these advantages requires winning the battle on the line. Tampa has one of the best defensive gaps in the offensive lines in the NFL this season, largely preventing him from rushing off Brady’s face and allowing him to throw from a clean pocket. If they give him time against this secondary package, he will find holes. But if Smiths and / or Gary start pushing Brady out of his seat and he has to buy time or restart after maneuvering in his pocket, this is where the Packers can have an advantage. Tampa may keep his balance by passing action, but the Packers will probably be fine if Bucs decides to run instead of throwing. They are defeated by Furnet and Jones rather than Brady, one would think.

When the packers have the ball

The Buccaneers finished this season, just like last season, with one of the NFL’s best defenses. Tampa ranks sixth in permitted yards, eighth in permitted points and fifth in efficiency in defense, according to the DVOA of Football Outsiders. But like last year, Bucs’ defensive success was built on their ability to stop running: they ranked first in the DVOA for defense in each of the last two seasons. For this reason, it seems unlikely that this is a game controlled by Aaron Jones, Jamaal Williams and AJ Dylan – even if Alvin Camara got lost on the ground several times last week.

Due to this focus on running, Bucs can be defeated in the air. In fact, they seemingly encourage opposing violations to be thrown on the basis of their order. According to Pro Football Focus and Tru Media, the Buccaneers used at least seven defenders in the field of 59 percent of their defensive clicks, about 5 percent more often than the average team in the league (54.2 percent). The same goes for their use of eight people: Tampa equals 31.6% of cases in this way, compared to the league average of 25.5%.

The more defenders in the field, the more profitable it is for the opponent to pass instead of running. That turned out to be true against the Bucs, with opponents releasing their best EPAs at the game level against Tampa’s eight flights, according to Tru Media.

So does the Bucs really want to play a defense that encourages the Packers to pass the ball to Aaron Rodgers, not Jones, Williams and Dillon? I probably wouldn’t. But that’s Tampa’s philosophy for most of the last two years. They have managed to find success with it because they do such a good job by excluding opposing games and putting pressure on the opponent’s quarterbacks. Bucs has put pressure on QB with 36.3% discounts this season, well above the league average of 30.7%.

Can they maintain pressure against packers? This is usually easier said than done. Rodgers was the second least crowded quarterback of the season, with speeders hitting him in only 23.8 percent of the time. And it’s not like he got rid of the ball too fast for the rush to get there. His average throwing time of 2.78 seconds, for PFF, was exactly around the average level of 2.76 seconds. He just got amazing protection from a pass. Of course, the team’s best pass defender was left to deal with David Bakhtiari, who is now out of season after tearing up the ACL. The packers did pretty well without him last week, but A. the power of Aries’ quick pass is on the inside, not on the edge; and B. Aaron Donald is wounded and obviously not himself. This week could create a bigger challenge for the boys ahead, as Shaq Barrett, Jason Pierre-Paul and others take off from the edge.

Packers also need to have some significant advantages in the match in the passing game. Davante Adams is almost uncovered, as he showed last week against Jalen Ramsey. Bucs may or may not use Carlton Davis to overshadow it, but it seems unlikely. Adams will defeat anyone Tampa puts in front of him. But Green Bay should also have an advantage with Robert Tonyan over the middle (the Bucs finished 25th in the DVOA against throws to tight ends), as well as Jones and Williams outside the back end (only two teams allowed more passes to running defenders) . With so many opportunities for Rodgers, packers need to be able to move the ball.

Naturally, the answer to that is that every word of it was true when Packers and Bucs played earlier this season, and Bucs walked away with a 38-10 win. Repetition, however, seems unlikely. The Packers actually led the game 10-0 and looked a bit on top, only uncharacteristically for Rogers to be selected by Sean Murphy-Bunting and then almost selected by Jamel Dean in the next possession. He will continue to throw only three more interceptions throughout the year. The sure bet is for him to take care of the ball and dig things up.

Last odds:

Green Bay Packers -3.5

Prediction: Packers 27, Buccaneers 21




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