The Green Bay Packers will welcome the San Francisco 49ers to Lambeau Field on Saturday for a Divisional Round matchup and Jimmy Garoppolo knows his squad is in for a tough test against the NFC’s top seed.
After dispatching of the Cowboys 23-17, Garoppolo shifted his focus to the Packers, admitting the thrilling road win against Dallas might galvanize them for a trip to Green Bay.
“I think whenever you have a battle at the end like that, it shows a real team,” Garoppolo said. “You look guys in the eyes and you see who’s in that moment – and ready for it. It’s just going to do us well down the road. It’s not going to be easy going into Lambeau. We know it’s going to be a tough challenge for us, but we’re ready for it.”
While things got close at the end, the 49ers put on quite the dominant display against the Cowboys for most of the afternoon, limiting the Dallas offense to scraps and key players stepping up on the offensive side of the ball with game-changing plays.
“Guys just stepping up big in big key situations, that’s really what it was all day,” Garoppolo said. “Early on, we got it rolling with the offense and the defense just throughout the entire day. We got some dogs on our defense, man. It’s fun.”
Packers Value Home Field Edge Tremendously
Thanks to their 13-4 record, the Packers locked up the first-round bye and home-field through the postseason. The Packers are undefeated at home this season, which makes the edge even more important.
“Home field is not just for the fans. We obviously love having that element and being in front of our fans, but just playing in Lambeau is just a different experience,” Packers wide receiver Davante Adams said. “Teams come in and they’re not quite as fast. They might come in and be fast, but we just like being in our home stadium. Just being at home, in general, is just a more comfortable feeling. Then, you add fans into the mix, and it makes it that much better.”
The 49ers and Packers faced off earlier this year, with Green Bay coming out on top 30-28 on a last-second field goal at Levi’s Stadium. Now with a home-field edge, the Packers have opened as a five-point favorite for the matchup.
And there’s won’t be any California weather in Green Bay on game day. The forecast for game day currently calls for a high around 20 degrees and a low around 10 degrees.
49ers Dealing With Injuries After Win
The Packers might have an additional advantage in the matchup due to the 49ers missing two key starters on the defensive side of the ball in pass-rusher Nick Bosa and linebacker Fred Warner. Bosa missed the second half against the Cowboys with a concussion, while Warner watched from the sideline with an ankle injury.
“Shanahan says he thinks Fred Warner’s ankle injury is similar to the one he sustained earlier in the year, and that sounds like good news for the 49ers,” The Athletic’s David Lombardi reported after the game. “Warner would be able to return next week if that’s indeed the case.”
Being a head injury, Bosa’s status is a little more unpredictable. Shanahan said he’ll be in concussion protocol this week and they’ll evaluate the situation throughout the week.