Packers vs. Saints NFL Week 1 Preview
The Packers will take on the New Orleans Saints in Week 1 of what should be an intriguing matchup.
Let’s analyze this NFL showdown.
Green Bay Packers vs. New Orleans Saints
Sunday, September 12, 2021 - 4:25 PM ET at TIAA Bank Field, Jacksonville, FL
Now that the soap opera that occurred between Packers management and Aaron Rodgers is over, Green Bay is ostensibly set to ride a rail straight through to the postseason with another NFC North title firmly in place. Many of the expert handicappers residing at SBR Picks also believe the North is Green Bay’s for the taking but I’m not so sure that the disruption in the offseason won’t have reverberating effects during the regular season.
If you missed it, King Aaron had his feelings hurt when the Packers drafted his heir-apparent, Jordan Love, two years ago and he’s still whining about not being informed. How dare they?! Ironically, it was the same set of circumstances that paved the way for his ascension to the throne after he held a clipboard for three full seasons behind Brett Favre before he got the keys to the offense in his fourth season. What’s good for the goose, as they say.
Nevertheless, Rodgers will have to be all-in if the Packers are going to make another Super Bowl run and some are questioning whether or not he is mentally sound enough to make that happen. Rodgers has always been prickly and a bit off-putting but when he’s on the field he’s been nothing but money. We shall soon see.
No More Summer Brees
It’s the end of an era in N’awlins as Drew Brees has left the building for good after a historic 20-year run, the majority spent down on the bayou after beginning his career in San Diego. The quarterback competition to replace Brees was between Jameis Winston, erstwhile Bucs’ quarterback, and the multi-faceted Taysom Hill. Ultimately, Winston prevailed and Hill will be his backup.
The problem with Winston is that for all his athletic prowess, he tosses as many bewildering picks as he does stellar touchdown passes. He is the definition of a mercurial quarterback and one who can leave his fans breathless and wanting more or soul-crushingly dispirited when he winds up and lets the pigskin fly into centerfield where the corners and safeties roam.
After the 2019 season, Winston became the first quarterback in league history to throw for at least 30 touchdowns and 30 interceptions in the same season. This is in stark contrast to the uber cautious Brees who had a grand total of only 23 interceptions over his last four seasons as a starter versus 73 for Winston in Tampa Bay over the same time period!
Saints fans are hoping Winston has matured and has a better understanding of when to throw the ball away as opposed to trying to squeeze it through impossibly tight windows. The Packers’ secondary will be geared up and licking their chops to see if Winston will fall back into his bad habits.
Wanna Make a Bet?
If we cruise on over to NFL odds we can see all of the best sportsbooks in one glance. As of this writing, the books are dealing the Packers as 4 to 4 ½ point favorites depending on where you shop. And what you should know is that this meeting is being held at a neutral site thanks to Hurricane Ida tearing a swath through large parts of Louisiana.
This meeting will be held in Jacksonville and although I am not convinced Rodgers is emotionally stable after a bitter feud with his paymasters, I am even less convinced Winston has the goods to deliver a seamless performance against what should be an upper-echelon Packers defense.
Let’s lay it and like it with Green Bay as I think we are getting a decent number considering this home game for the Saints has shifted to neutral territory. Packers get the cover here.
Free NFL Pick: Packers -4 (-110) at BetAnySports