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Cheese Curds, 11/11: Packers need to control Mariota's legs and keep Rodgers running

The scrambling abilities of the two quarterbacks in Sunday's game could decide the contest's final outcome.

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers have been blessed with one of the more athletic quarterbacks in the NFL over the past decade. One thing that has set Aaron Rodgers apart from other signal-callers is his ability to break the pocket and move the chains with his legs. He has done so in particular this year, with his runs accounting for numerous first downs, many of which have come as third-down conversions.

However, opposing defenses have started using a particular strategy in an effort to contain the Packers' quarterback and keep him in the pocket. This is something that the Packers have tried to use in the past as well, and there is a good chance that they will do so this week as well, when they play the Tennessee Titans and Marcus Mariota.

In fact, this game features two of the top four quarterbacks in terms of rushing yards in 2016. Mariota leads the NFL with 235 yards (at 6.7 yards per run), while Rodgers comes in fourth with 199 (and a rate of 5.9). If either team is able to bottle up the other's quarterback and keep him from picking up big chunks of yardage on the ground, they will put themselves in a great position to pull off a victory on Sunday afternoon.

Those topics are addressed in today's Cheese Curds, as well as much more.

Packers' top ranking on the line again |
Titans running back DeMarco Murray is second in the NFL in rushing behind Ezekiel Elliott, and he has gashed the Packers in the past. The Packers entered Week 10 as the top rushing defense once again, but will be put to the test by Murray and a mobile quarterback in Marcus Mariota.

Spy games help contain mobile quarterbacks |
One way to contain a player like Mariota is with a spy - a dedicated defender to track the quarterback. Aaron Rodgers in particular has seen defenses employ this strategy frequently over the past few weeks. Still, he is putting up excellent rushing numbers anyway, and having that player taken off the pass rush can sometimes buy the quarterback some extra time.

Packers RB math: 88 (Ty Montgomery) more than doubles 44 (James Starks) - ESPN
As for the rest of the Packers' running game, I expect that Montgomery will still take the bulk of the carries on Sunday, especially if he is cleared for a full workload. Starks will likely be kept on a snap count and he has been less effective this season anyway.

NFL coaches and players with everything on the line in the second half of 2016 |
Mike McCarthy is on this list, and his situation has been compared to that of Andy Reid in Philadelphia a few years back. Should Ted Thompson make a change if the Packers fail to make the playoffs?

‘Magic: The Gathering' gave Seahawk Cassius Marsh a care package after his $20,000 card collection was stolen -
Someone broke into Marsh's car and stole his Magic cards. After a plea to Seahawks fans went unanswered, he did get some nice swag from the card game's Seattle-based publisher.