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Taking the Show to Lambeau

Posted Oct 1, 2011

The Broncos are hitting the road for a matchup with the Green Bay Packers in Week 4.


ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Next up for the Broncos (1-2) is a matchup with the reigning Super Bowl Champions.

Sunday calls for a trip to Lambeau Field against the Green Bay Packers, who have shown no signs of slowing down with a 3-0 start to the new season.

But for Head Coach John Fox, the Packers are just like any team on the schedule. They’re an opponent, and they’re one that Fox is preparing his team to beat.

“People look at records; we look at the tape,” Fox said.

So, what does the tape reveal?

“They’re a really good Packer team and we’ll have our work cut out for us, no doubt,” Fox said.

His players agree.

“They’re really good. They are as advertised,” linebacker Joe Mays said.

“Obviously they're the best. They were crowned champs last year,” wide receiver Eric Decker added. “It's going to be a good test.”

In looking for the franchise’s first victory at Lambeau Field, the primary challenge for Denver will be finding a way to slow down one of the league’s most dynamic offenses -- a unit led by quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who currently leads the league in completion percentage and boasts the NFL’s highest quarterback rating.

“No. 1, its Rodgers,” Mays said. “That guy is one of the best quarterbacks in the league. He makes it happen over there. He gets their offense going; he sets the tempo, so we’ve got to stop him.”

“But then they have a bunch of weapons — a bunch of receivers and tight ends, so they utilize everything they have.”

With a receiving corps headlined by Greg Jennings and Donald Driver and tight end Jermichael Finley coming off a three-touchdown performance last week, Rodgers has a number of playmakers to spread the ball around to.

The Broncos know everyone in the Packer huddle poses a threat.

“They have so many weapons in so many different areas,” cornerback Champ Bailey said. “There is not one person on that offense that you can just say, ‘Leave him with that guy and don't worry about him.’”

Green Bay has several playmakers on defense as well -- namely linebacker Clay Matthews and cornerback Charles Woodson -- but that unit has been exposed at times throughout the young season.

The Packers have allowed the fourth-most yards per game and have been particularly vulnerable through the air, ranking second-to-last in passing yards allowed. But their run-defense is the best in the NFL through three weeks, allowing just 55 yards per game on the ground.

Early-season statistics aside, quarterback Kyle Orton says the offense is focused on consistency and eliminating mental errors that have stalled drives.

“Our message the whole week is that when we do it right, and we have all 11 guys doing it right, we’ve been a good offense,” Orton said. “We’ve gone down, we’ve scored points, we’ve done well in the red zone and we’ve done well on third down. Our problem has been when we can’t get 11 guys to get it right for the whole drive, and we seem to stop ourselves a little bit.

“This will be a good week for us to focus on playing a 60-minute game and having everybody do it right the whole time.”

Decker and the offense will attempt to do just that, and the wide receiver believes the Broncos have the talent to emerge victorious Sunday if a complete team effort is put forth.

“We have the ability. We have the athletes,” Decker said. “It's about executing and coming together as three phases and putting the game together and we haven't done that yet.”

Fox shares Decker’s confidence and is looking forward to seeing his team battle the defending champs on their historic home field.

“You go into every game thinking you’re going to win,” Fox said. “We’ve got a new opportunity. It’s a great venue. It’s against a very worthy opponent. That’s why you play the game.”

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