The Green Bay Packers have a golden opportunity to snap their two-game losing streak when they take on the Denver Broncos in Week 7. However, they will need several X-factors to step up and come ready to play.
It will all start on the defensive side of the ball. Joe Barry’s unit is coming off their strongest overall performance of the season, albeit against the Las Vegas Raiders, and they need to carry the momentum over against another AFC West opponent.
The Packers need a win against the Broncos to get back on the right path. Find out the five x-factors that will determine the outcome of this crucial game.
With De’Vondre Campbell unlikely to play, Quay Walker must bring his A-game. He has the athleticism to fly around the field, wreak havoc, and help shut down a potent Broncos’ run game. Whether it be through traditional handoffs or Russell Wilson trying to scramble, Walker must fill the right holes and take the right angles to cut them off.
Packers X-Factors: T.J. Slaton
With Walker filling the gaps, Slaton needs to take up space, eat blockers, and establish himself at the line of scrimmage. The Broncos have one of the worst passing offenses in the NFL, but average fourth in rushing yards per attempt at 4.9. That’s the type of team that has given Green Bay issues in the past, and the Packers can’t allow Denver to run for 200+ yards.
Packers X-Factors: Rasheed Walker
Like Jordan Love, the Packers will spend the 2023 season to see what they have with left tackle Rasheed Walker and whether he can be a starter in the future. Through five games, Walker leads the Packers in sacks allowed (two) and is second in total pressures (12). The last two games, in particular, have been rough and he needs a solid game to build momentum for the rest of the season.
Packers X-Factors: Christian Watson
The Broncos defense is a mess and the Packers should be able to exploit them at multiple levels, especially with the deep ball and Christian Watson. Watson has gotten off to a slow start to the season, missing the first three games with a hamstring injury. After a blown coverage, he had a big play against the Raiders, but was caught from behind before he could take it in for a score. Green Bay needs him to be at his best and lighten the load on Love and the other receivers.
Packers X-Factors: Aaron Jones
The Packers offense hasn’t looked the same since Aaron Jones left Week 1 with a hamstring injury. He’s clearly their best and most important player and is trending toward returning to full health. That’s great news for a unit that has struggled mightily the last couple of weeks and desperately needs an injection of life. Jones must be ready to bring his A-game.