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Redskins 2016 Season Preview: Green Bay Packers, Week 11


As the Washington Redskins get closer to the start of another season, will preview all 16 of the team's regular season games, continuing with today's look against the Green Bay Packers.

The Packers didn't win their division for the first time since 2011, but managed to make the second round of the playoffs after beating the Redskins in the first round. With a healthier roster, they're looking to regain their place at the top of the NFC North.

Result Of Last Game vs. Green Bay: Lost 18-35 on Jan. 10, 2016 (Playoffs)

Green Bay's Key additions: Signed TE Jared Cook, LB Lerentee McCray; Drafted DT Kenny Clark (UCLA), T Jason Spriggs (Indiana), LB Blake Martinez (Stanford), T Kyle Murphy (Stanford), LB Kyler Fackrell (Utah St.), DE Dean Lowry (Northwestern)

Green Bay's Key subtractions: DT B.J. Raji (retired), CB Casey Hayward (free agent/Chargers), QB Scott Tolzien (free agent/Colts), FB John Kuhn (free agent), LB Mike Neal (free agent), WR James Jones (free agent)

Green Bay's Pro Bowlers: QB Aaron Rodgers, LB Clay Matthews, LB Julius Peppers, G Josh Sitton

The Washington Redskins will host the Packers on Sunday Night Football and attempt to get some retribution after losing to Green Bay in the Wild Card Round of the playoffs at home last year.

Here's an exclusive look from the Washington Redskins' sideline during their 2015 NFC Wild Card Round game against the Green Bay Packers.

Green Bay finished in second place behind the Vikings after starting the season with six straight victories. But three consecutive losses followed – two to the eventual Super Bowl participants – and a loss to Minnesota in the season finale voided an NFC North title for the first time since 2011.

Still, the Packers have made the playoffs the last seven years, and with Aaron Rodgers at the helm, an eighth seems like inevitability. That's especially the case considering just one starting offensive lineman (Josh Sitton) was able to play the entire year and a healthy line for 2016 is in order.

Rodgers threw for 3,821 yards, 31 touchdowns and just eight interceptions last year, numbers that are impressive considering most of his receiving options weren't at his disposal.

After missing all of last season with an ACL injury, top wide receiver Jordy Nelson returns, hoping to post the numbers he's boasted in recent years without skipping a beat. Rodgers will also have Randall Cobb, who led Packers receivers last year with 829 yards and Davante Adams, who didn't play up to the potential many thought he could. Last year's breakout rookie Ty Montgomery and Jeff Janis should battle him for the third receiving spot.

The passing game will open up more if running back Eddie Lacy, who lost weight this offseason, can return to his 2014 form, when he compiled 1,178 yards rushing and 427 receiving yards.

A look back at some of the top images in games between the Washington Redskins and Green Bay Packers.

Richard Rodgers returns as the big target, most famous for his Hail Mary grab against Detroit last season, and will have a complement this season with Jared Cook, who the Packers acquired in free agency from Los Angeles. He's racked up 3,503 career receiving yards and 16 touchdowns and could see better numbers with Rodgers under center.

On the defense, the Redskins will have numerous weapons to watch, especially as their biggest star has switched his position.

Clay Matthews will shift back to outside linebacker after playing the mike position on the inside last season. He collected 6.5 sacks, and played in a lot of coverage, but the Packers want to see those numbers go higher with a return to his more natural and dangerous pass-rushing capabilities.

Julius Peppers also returns for his 15th year in the league after attaining double-digit sacks (10.5) in 2015. He and Mike Daniels, the defensive end who ranked No. 95 on NFL's Top 100 list and has made major strides since he was drafted in the fourth round in 2012, will hold down a line that lost B.J. Raji to early retirement.

In coverage, the Packers will rely on their young corners – Sam Shields, Quinten Rollins and DeMarious Randall – to get the job done after losing Casey Heyward to free agency.  Ha Ha Clinton-Dix provided 100 tackles and Morgan Burnett's provided 68 last year at the safety position and will likely carry their starting roles into the regular season.

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