The Green Bay Packers were one of four NFL teams to advance from wild card weekend. They defeated the Minnesota Vikings 24-10 on Saturday night.
After their one home game, the Packers may not return to Lambeau Field for the rest of the playoffs. As the No.3 seed in the NFC, they will visit the San Francisco 49ers on Saturday night. If they are victorious, they’ll face the winner of the Atlanta Falcons-Seattle Seahawks contest in the NFC Championship Game.
Two years removed from their last title, the Packers are looking to win their fifth championship since the merger. What are the chances that Green Bay wins the Super Bowl in 2013?
Four of the eight remaining teams are seeded higher than Green Bay, but the Packers are one of the favorites to win it all. According to the betting web site Bovada.lv, the Packers odds of winning the Vince Lombardi Trophy are 6/1. That puts them tied with the 49ers in the conference, and behind the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots.
The Packers are three-point underdogs heading into San Francisco in a rematch of Week 1. Green Bay lost that contest, but is playing much better at this point in the season. The Packers started off the 2012 season at 2-3, but has lost just twice since Week 5.
Even if the Packers are forced to play two straight road playoff games, they might not be at much of a disadvantage. The 49ers were better away from San Francisco throughout the year, going just 5-3 at home. Atlanta lost just one game in the Georgia Dome, but they had a number of close calls. At home, the Falcons needed last-second field goals to beat the Oakland Raiders and Carolina Panthers.
Green Bay has been plagued by a few weaknesses this year. Its offensive line has been porous and it has often struggled to establish a running game. The team’s ability to start Aaron Rodgers, though, gives the Packers a good chance in every game.
Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson have been discussed as the top MVP candidates, by Rodgers may have outperformed both of them in 2012. Last year’s MVP winner led the NFL with a 108 passer rating, despite getting sacked more than any other quarterback. He was second in the league with 39 touchdown passes, and 27 other signal callers threw more than his eight interceptions.
It won’t be an easy road to the Super Bowl for the Packers. All three NFC teams could present major problems for them. The 49ers already beat them handily this season, the Seahawks sport the best defense in football, and the Falcons has the best record in the NFL.
Still, with a hot team and a great quarterback, Green Bay has a good chance to win their second Super Bowl in three years.