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The Packers eliminated the Rams from the playoffs last season, beating them at Lambeau Field in the divisional round. On Sunday, the Rams will get a chance to avenge that loss, once again visiting Lambeau for a Week 12 matchup.
It’s a game that both teams would love to win, though the sense of urgency might be a bit higher for the Rams as they try to chase down the Cardinals in the NFC West. It’s also an opportunity for Los Angeles to earn a statement win in the midst of so many saying this team lacks a quality victory outside of beating the Bucs in Week 3.
Looking ahead to this matchup, here are six things to know for Rams-Packers on Sunday afternoon.
Packers have won six of the last seven meetings
Although the all-time series is tied 47-47-2, the Packers have owned this matchup as of late. They’ve won six of the last seven games against the Rams, which goes all the way back to 2007. Obviously, the Rams weren’t very good until Sean McVay arrived in 2017, and since then, it’s been a much closer matchup.
The Rams are 1-1 against the Packers with McVay as their coach, winning in 2018 and losing in the divisional round of the playoffs this past January. The Rams had lost five straight to Green Bay from 2007-2015 before McVay was hired.
Packers have 2nd-most YAC/reception, fewest drops in NFL
The Packers have dealt with injuries and absences due to COVID-19 at the wide receiver spot this season, but their receiving corps has still been very reliable and productive. According to Pro Football Reference, the Packers have dropped just nine passes as a team, tied with the Seahawks for the fewest in the NFL.
Additionally, they gain an average of 6.2 yards after the catch per reception, which ranks second in the league only to the Bengals. For comparison, the Rams have 18 dropped passes (seventh-most) and average 5.6 yards after the catch per reception (10th).
Matt LaFleur, Joe Barry both coached on Sean McVay’s staff
McVay and the Rams should be familiar with some of the concepts that Green Bay uses. LaFleur was hired as the Packers’ head coach in 2019 and has had remarkable success since then. This past offseason, the Packers brought in Barry as their defensive coordinator to replace Mike Pettine in that role.
LaFleur was the Rams’ offensive coordinator in 2017 before leaving to join the Titans in 2018 and eventually the Packers a year later. Barry joined the Rams in 2017 when McVay was hired and was their linebackers coach and assistant head coach for four years before Green Bay brought him in this season.
Matthew Stafford is 4-3 in his last seven games vs. Packers
Stafford has not had much success against the Packers throughout his career. When he was with the Lions, he went just 7-13 against Green Bay, losing each of his last three starts. But before those three losses, he and the Lions dominated the Packers.
They won four straight against Green Bay in 2017 and 2018, with final scores of 30-17, 35-11, 31-23 and 31-0. In that stretch, Stafford threw nine touchdown passes and had zero interceptions, throwing for at least 323 yards in each game. Aaron Rodgers didn’t play in those two 2017 matchups, however, due to injury.
In his last six games at Lambeau Field, Stafford is 3-3.
Packers and Rams are both top five in offense DVOA
Despite the Rams’ recent struggles on offense, they’re still one of the top teams in offense DVOA (defense-adjusted value over average), according to Football Outsiders. The same goes for the Packers, who rank 17th in scoring and 18th in yards.
The Packers are fifth in offense DVOA (13.2%), while the Rams are second (16.4%). Both teams have had their low points this season – they’ve each scored 20 or fewer points three times – but when healthy, these are two of the best offenses in football.
Von Miller and Aaron Donald have 5 total sacks in 5 games vs. Packers
Miller and Donald must both enjoy playing against the Packers because they’ve put up solid numbers when facing Green Bay.
In three games against the Packers, Miller has three sacks. He had two in his first game against Green Bay in 2011, also recording three quarterback hits in the Broncos’ 49-23 loss. He added another sack and two more QB hits in 2015, but he was blanked in 2019, his last game against the Packers.
As for Donald, he has two sacks in two regular-season games against Green Bay. Both of them came in their 2018 win over the Packers, also adding four QB hits and two tackles for a loss.