Pregame warmup: NFC North Division lead on the line

Posted by Mike Spofford on November 15, 2015 – 10:46 am

GREEN BAY — For the first time since Week 1, the Packers could actually fall out of the lead in the NFC North with a loss.

Currently tied atop the division with the Vikings at 6-2, the Packers need a win today vs. the Lions to assure they’ll remain no worse than tied for first heading into next weekend’s Green Bay-Minnesota matchup in Minneapolis. The Vikings, who have won six of seven games since a season-opening loss in San Francisco, play later Sunday, at Oakland.

Next week’s game will be for the division lead regardless of what happens today. The Packers and Vikings have not met yet this year, and their second meeting is slated for Week 17 at Lambeau Field.

Today is the first of four straight division games for the Packers, an unprecedented run of division foes in the Mike McCarthy era and the first time Green Bay has faced four straight division opponents since 2000. For more on that, check out this week’s “One Last Look.”

New backfield: Not only was Packers RB James Starks named the team’s No. 1 back this week, he will be the unquestioned feature back today with Eddie Lacy inactive due to a groin injury. Starks will be backed up by undrafted rookie Alonzo Harris.

End the streak: Last week marked the first time since 2010 the Packers lost back-to-back regular-season games with Aaron Rodgers as the starting quarterback. The last time Rodgers lost three straight? December of 2008, his first year as a starting quarterback.

Start a new streak: The Packers haven’t recorded a sack in either of their last two games after getting at least one sack in 42 consecutive regular-season games before the trip to Denver two weeks ago.

As the Packers look to get back to their sacking ways, they’re facing a Lions QB in Matthew Stafford who has been sacked 22 times in eight games this season.

Not a Lions’ den: The Packers have won 24 consecutive games against the Detroit Lions in the state of Wisconsin, a streak that began in 1992 and includes one playoff victory (’94 NFC Wild Card). The last Packers QB to lose to the Lions in Wisconsin? Mike Tomczak in 1991.

TV map: Here is the FOX TV map for the noon CT kickoff window, courtesy of

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