Packers key matchups and storylines vs Bengals in Week 5

The Green Bay Packers (3-1) are set to take on the Cincinnati Bengals (3-1) in a surprisingly big Week 5 contest. There are some major storylines and matchups that will go a long way in determining the winner of this game.

Green Bay’s injuries are beginning to pile up in a bad way and they need to find ways to scrape together victories. Sunday’s contest is a big one. The Packers play the Chicago Bears and Washington Football Team over the next two weeks before their schedule turns into an absolute gauntlet (at the Arizona Cardinals, at Kansas City Chiefs, vs Seattle Seahawks, at Minnesota Vikings, vs Los Angeles Rams). It would be amazing if they can find some breathing room and enter that game against the Cardinals at 6-1.

Of course, that’s easier said than done and we shouldn’t get too far ahead of ourselves. Let’s check out some key matchups and storylines for their Week 5 contest.

Let’s take a look at some of the key matchups and major storylines as the Green Bay Packers prepare to take on the Cincinnati Bengals.

Packers’ key matchup/storyline: Eric Stokes vs Ja’Marr Chase

With Jaire Alexander out, Eric Stokes must step up to the plate. And he’ll have a difficult matchup in fellow rookie Ja’Marr Chase. Chase and quarterback Joe Burrow have demonstrated great chemistry early in the season and the two have connected on a number of deep balls. Stokes must ensure he keeps Chase in front of him and prevents the big plays that Chase has already become accustomed to in the NFL.

Packers’ storyline: Will they be able to slow down Bengals’ passing attack?

Sticking with the secondary, all of Green Bay’s defensive backs are going to have to step up to the plate. With Tee Higgins returning, the Bengals have a trio of wide receivers in Chase, Higgins and Tyler Boyd who will test the Packers’ secondary at every level. Kevin King is expected to return and both he and Chandon Sullivan must be ready to improve their play from what it’s been so far this year.

Packers’ storyline: How much will Joe Mixon play?

Joe Mixon will reportedly play after being questionable all week with an ankle injury. The question is just how much? Mixon is far and away their best running back and someone they like to feed. However, if he can’t handle his normal workload, it’s a big step down to Samaj Perine. Taking away the threat of the running game would at least help Green Bay focus more on the passing attack.

Packers’ key matchup: Kenny Clark vs weak Bengals’ interior offensive line

The Bengals interior offensive line has had some major struggles this year. Starting guard Jackson Carmon ranks 75th out of 75 eligible according to PFF, starting center Trey Hopkins ranks 31st out of 33, and their other guard Xavier Su’a-Filo ranks 63rd out of 75. To make matters worse, Su’aFilo has been ruled out for this game while Hopkins and guard D’Ante Smith are listed as questionable. That could mean a big day ahead for Kenny Clark who has embarrassed some solid offensive linemen in previous weeks. What will he do against a clearly overmatched interior group?