A Broncos-Packers matchup is always one for the ages. (Sports Illustrated)

Week 4 Preview: Denver At Green Bay

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Weather wise, the Broncos lucked out. They’re taking on the Green Bay Packers at the beginning of October instead of in December when the shirtless cheesehead fans come out in -3 degree temps and will their team to victory simply by way of mid-western hardiness.

The Broncos travel to the land of all things green and yellow to take on the oldest and most storied franchises in professional sports. Oh, did I forget to mention that they’re also the defending Super Bowl champs? What a world for the Broncos to enter coming off a 4-12 season.

Four weeks into the regular season, and either the pieces start falling into place or the place starts falling into pieces. There’s no need to hit any kind of panic button at week 4, but taking on the league’s 2010 champion leaves no room for mistakes.

The Green Bay Packers ran the table last season simply because they were great on both sides of the ball. They ranked 10th in points per game, and 5th in passing. However, it was their defense that dominated. The Packers were 2nd in points allowed giving up just 15.0 points per game, and their pass defense was ranked 5th overall. The Packers went 10-6 last season, but pushed their game to another level once the playoffs started.

If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Expect the Packers to bring back their key pieces from 2010. Aaron Rodgers has made the Packer faithful forget about the Brett Favre debacle from a few years ago, and Clay Matthews has made people forget how girly long hair can be.

Rodgers threw for 28 touchdowns (good for 6th best) and 11 interceptions. He had the 3rd best QB rating only behind Tom Brady and Philip Rivers. His main target was Greg Jennings who was the league’s 4th leading receiver with 76 catches for 1,265 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Defensively, Clay Matthews led the team in sacks with 14 and A.J. Hawk led the team in tackles. B.J. Raji contributed 7 sacks last season. The Packers were ranked 2nd in team sacks only behind the Steelers. This Broncos offensive line has its work cut out come October.

The Broncos are the sure fire underdogs in week 4, but perhaps it’s the fly-under-the-radar mentality that this team needs to ride in the beginning of the season to catch other teams off guard.

A win in Green Bay would be frosting on the Mile High cake.

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Tags: Aaron Rodgers Clay Matthews Denver Broncos Green Bay Packers

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