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Vandermeer's View: Attacking the Pack


This was a big 'circle it on the calendar' game when the schedule was released in April. At the time you had no idea that the Packers would be below .500 and fighting for their playoff lives.

The Texans are above .500, leading their division yet fighting for their playoff lives themselves. That's because Houston has lost two games in a row and has failed to establish the offensive consistency, particularly in the passing game, that they need for a big finish. But there is a lot of football left and a terrific opportunity to work toward reaching whatever the full potential is with this group.

Green Bay has hardly set the world on fire defensively. Injuries and other issues contributed to a recent four game losing streak that they snapped Monday night at Philadelphia.

Enter, the Texans. Somehow, Houston has to mentally delete the performance they had against San Diego and pick up where they left off in Mexico where the ball moved nicely for the most part.

It's crucial to put up multiple touchdowns at Lambeau field. Never mind Aaron Rodgers' hamstring problem. He's one of the best quarterbacks ever and still extremely dangerous. It might be too much to ask the Houston defense to keep the Pack under 20 points in their own gym.

Green Bay has new life after their recent win. Even though they trail NFC North leader Detroit by two games they still have a date with them at the end of the year. Plus, at 2-1 they have the best division record along with Chicago, which is out of it. So there's plenty of mojo left at Lambeau to inspire the home team.

The elements shouldn't be a factor. It'll be below 40 degrees, maybe some snow, and wind speeds in the single digits. The wind is worth noting. Last time the Texans were in Green Bay it was near zero. But with minimal wind, Houston could still throw the ball and racked up over 400 passing yards.

Houston has historically done well in colder temperatures. Maybe it's because it is rare to play in them and the team gears up for it. The last time the Texans were in these conditions was in 2014 when they ran for over 200 yards against a 6-3 Cleveland team in 34 degree temps. Alfred Blue had 156 yards on a whopping 36 carries. Here's hoping for similar results with Sunday's ball carriers.

A loss hardly ends the AFC South campaign. Not with a 3-0 divisional record and three division games left on the schedule. But a win is much needed to build a cushion and to start playing better football going into crunch time of the 2016 season.

Check out some of the best shots from Wednesday's practice as the Texans prepare for the Packers on Sunday.

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