In any event, here's what Smith said to Green Bay writers earlier this week.
"For us, we're playing to win the football game," Smith said. "We want to continue to grow, continue to improve the way we've been doing here lately. Besides that, we have a chance to sweep the division. That's important for us. We want to go into the playoffs on a high."
In today's Daily News, Ralph Vacchiano points out some recent history:
[In 2007] the Giants were locked into the fifth seed, facing a New England Patriots team that was 15-0. Early in the week, Coughlin decided his team would go all out to try to stop the unbeaten season.
They fell short, losing 38-35. But many players said their inspired effort was the launching point for their Super Bowl XLII run.
One year later, the Giants did the opposite. With the No. 1 seed locked up, they pulled their starters at halftime in their season finale in Minnesota and lost 20-19. Two weeks later they lost in their opening playoff game, too, falling to the Philadelphia Eagles, 23-11.
Those are just two examples and there doesn't seem to be any consistently right answer. Smith can see that from his own history in Chicago. In 2005, he rested his starters in Week 17 and then watched his team lose in the first round of the playoffs. In
2006, he rested them again and the Bears rolled to Super Bowl XLI.
"I was in charge then, so I kind of realize what we did back then," Smith said earlier this week on a conference call with writers in Green Bay. "You adjust a lot of things. In '06 we had some injuries, too. There's a lot of things that go into who plays. But for us it's 2010, and we plan on playing our guys this week. I don't know what else I need to tell you besides that."