The Atlanta Falcons (5-7) will be playing against the Green Bay Packers (9-3) at the Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Monday, December 8, 2014. The Week 14 ESPN Monday Night Football will be broadcasted online via live stream - free for subscribers - below.
Green Bay, who have a 6-0 record on their home field at Lambeau, are the clear favorite to win on the typical frosty weather in Wisconsin, but the Falcons' quarterback Matt Ryan is determined to lead his team in passing attacks, hoping to pull off an upset win.
"Their defense is opportunistic," Ryan said, according to AtlantaFalcons.com. "We've got to focus on ball security, and that starts with me. I've got to make good decisions in the pass game and be accurate with the football."
The key matchup in the Monday's game is Falcons CB Desmond Trufant vs. Packers' Rodgers.
"He's [Rodgers] a great player, probably the best quarterback in the league, depending on who you look at," Trufant said at a press conference. "He's very confident. He's got swagger, and believes in all his players. We have to try and limit him and handle our job on the backend."
Despite his team's worst overall and pass defense ranking, Trufant has accumulated an impressive 44 tackles, 13 pass breakups and two interceptions this season, a stat that Rodgers cannot overlook and recognizes the improvement in Falcons' overall defense.
"It's a talented group, an ascending group, especially Trufant," said Rodgers. "He's got great feel and very good ball skills. He's around the football a lot."
While Trufant may be a great defensive player, he, alone, is unlikely to stop Rodgers, who has passed 3,325 yards and 32 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions at Lambeau this season, and the Packers' high-flying wide receivers, including Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb. Atlanta must also watch out for Packers' running back Eddie Lacy, who has put down six touchdowns and 770 rush yards in 175 carries.
Falcons defensive coordinator Mike Nolan said the players have been studying the Packers' game-changing plays through film, attempting to identify what Rodgers' weapons like receivers Nelson and Cobb do. However, Falcons' defense will have a challenging time stopping Green Bay's advances.
If Falcons pull off an upset win, they will most likely do it through their league's No. 6-ranked passing attack, led by Ryan, who is going 306 of 465, with 3,427 yards and 21 touchdowns. Also, Devin Hester has the league's top punt-return average, 15.4.
The Packers lead the pack in the NFL playoff picture. With Mike Daniels and Letroy Guion more active in defense, they are better equipped in the frontlines on both ends to make it to the Super Bowl 2015 than prior team roster, according to ESPN NFL analyst Jon Gruden.
Coming into the Week 14 Monday Night Football game, the Packers achieved the NFC's No. 1 seed, beating out their biggest competitor, Tom Brady's New England Patriots, with 26-21.
With four more weeks left until Playoffs, Green Bay is considered the favorite for No. 1 seed, according to Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com. But none of the remaining games are guaranteed or easy.