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The Boston Globe

Sports

Packers-49ers scouting report

Aaron Rodgers has tall order vs. 49ers

Packers on offense: Aaron Rodgers is like a silent assassin. He isn’t flashy, he just quietly goes about his business of shredding secondaries. Rodgers is very smart and well-prepared, and he doesn’t make a lot of mistakes. Rodgers has an extremely accurate and strong arm and does an excellent job of spreading the wealth. The 6-foot-2-inch, 225-pounder is an underrated athlete and will make plays with his legs. He has nice receivers in rugged Greg Jennings (he’s speedy and strong), perpetually banged-up Jordy Nelson (he’s a great athlete), and the versatile Randall Cobb (he has an explosive first step). Tight end Jermichael Finley is a big, reliable target. Quick and agile Alex Green and wily veteran Ryan Grant will share the ground duties.

49ers on defense: There are impact players all over this unit. And the impacts are often bone-rattling. The linebackers are a fierce, brutish bunch led by the speedy and instinctive NaVorro Bowman (149 tackles) and the ultra-intense Patrick Willis (120 tackles). Aldon Smith (call him a linebacker or a defensive end, he could care less) is a freakish force. He overwhelmed blockers with great speed and power en route to collecting 19½ sacks.

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