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Patriots vs. Packers: Bill Belichick praises Aaron Rodgers

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New England's head coach sees Rodgers' ability to threaten a defense downfield as a prime concern.

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Without question, this Sunday's New England Patriots vs. Green Bay Packers tilt is the most anticipated matchup of Week 13. The game features the hottest teams from the AFC and NFC, those conferences' hottest quarterbacks, and will in the eyes of many determine the Super Bowl favorite.

In anticipation of the game, the media spoke with Bill Belichick Wednesday. The Patriots head coach had plenty of positive things to say about his team's opponent, particularly regarding signal caller Aaron Rodgers.

Many of Belichick's comments will sound familiar. He praised Rodgers' ability to hit his receivers in "the right place" and "in stride," calling him "a really good player." More importantly, the usually guarded Belichick actually went into detail about what concerns him about playing Rodgers.

"He does an excellent job in the pocket of extending plays, feeling the rush. He can run when he has to but he also is probably even more dangerous when he just buys extra time in the pocket and lets his receivers uncover and lifts it down the field to somebody for 20 or 30 yards that is able to get open because the play has been extended for another couple seconds. He just puts a tremendous amount of pressure on your defense as well as reading defenses and at times getting the offense into the right play or the right protection."

That answer is a refreshing change of pace from his usual responses, such as this one given earlier to the Boston media about comparing Rodgers to Tom Brady:

Jason B. Hirschhorn covers the Green Bay Packers for Acme Packing Company. He also serves as an SB Nation Newsdesk Contributor and writes for Sports on Earth.