Kickoff -- 12:30 p.m. Favorite -- Packers by 8 . Turf -- Natural. League Rankings -- Atlanta: 10th on offense (27th rushing, 6th passing); 29th on defense (9th rushing, 30th passing).
Green Bay: 7th on offense (26th rushing, 3rd passing); 14th on defense (7th rushing, 21st passing). Falcons -- The victory over San Francisco that put the Falcons in the playoffs was this franchise's most important win of the decade. QB Jeff George left the Niners game with a neck injury, but backup Bobby Herbert led Atlanta to victory. George is expected to play Sunday. Packers -- This could be the year Green Bay finally takes the next step. Bret Favre is the hottest QB in football right now and he's facing the NFC's worst pass defense. Packers need a hobbled Reggie White to have a full game and key the defense. Injuries -- ATL: Out - G Mike Zandofsky (knee). Probable - CB Ron Davis (quadricep), QB Jeff George (neck), DT Jumpy Geathers (toe), DT Pierce Holt (ankle), LB Ken Tippins (ankle). ... GB: Probable - DE Reggie White (hamstring). Of Note -- Favre's 38 TD passes are the third-highest total in NFL history. Atlanta WRs Terrence Mathis, Bert Emanuel and Eric Metcalf are the first team trio to surpass 1,000 yards since 1989. Overview -- Atlanta last appeared in the playoffs in 1991 when it lost in the second round to the Washington Redskins. Green Bay fell to eventual Super Bowl champion Dallas 35-9 in the second round last season. The Packers appear to be deeper and more experienced. The cold weather could be a factor for the pass-happy Falcons, who play their home games in a dome. Head-to-head -- Did not face each other in 1995. Green Bay leads overall series, 10-9. ------