The Green Bay Packers are not favored by many do perform very well in 2023. A great deal of this pessimism stems from Jordan Love taking over as the starting quarterback after Aaron Rodgers was traded to the New York Jets. Indeed, Love has not been given very good odds of being anything more than an average quarterback.
In a recent article on Bleacher Report, Alex Kay listed five players that he believes will not produce like stars in their new roles. The first player he named was Love.
Why Jordan Love Won’t Produce Like a Star for the Green Bay Packers
There are a few reasons for Kay’s argument that Love will not produce like a star. However, they are flawed and lack context.
The first reason he gives is that Love has not played very much:
“While Love has had the advantage of learning and working behind Rodgers for three years, he offers little in the way of meaningful in-game experience. Since he was drafted No. 26 overall in 2020, the Utah State product has drawn just one start and only got on the field for 10 contests in total, with most of those appearances being mop-up duty late in blowouts. The 24-year-old has thrown just 83 passes in the NFL, completing 50 of them for 606 yards and three touchdowns against three interceptions.”
When Rodgers, the quarterback Love is replacing, took over from Brett Favre, he did so having thrown 59 passes, completing 35 for them, for 329 yards, one touchdown, and one interception.
Listen, if one wants to doubt Love, that’s their prerogative, but to use the lack of playing time in three years is non-sensical when one realizes that Love, quite literally, has played more than Rodgers did in his first three seasons.
The second reason Kay gives for Love not being able to produce like a star is Love’s first career start against the Kansas City Chiefs (by the way, Rodgers did not start a game until he was named the starter in 2008):
“It is somewhat concerning that Love’s lone career start didn’t go well. During his sophomore season in 2021, the signal-caller replaced a banged-up Rodgers for a Week 9 clash with the Kansas City Chiefs. Love failed to spark the offense in that matchup, finishing the day having completed 19 of his 34 passing attempts for 190 yards and one touchdown.
“That 20-yard touchdown pass to Allen Lazard late in the fourth quarter was Green Bay’s lone score in an uninspiring 13-7 defeat.”
There are a few things wrong with this argument. First, “a banged-up” Rodgers is a really nice way of saying that he tested positive for COVID-19. Either that, or Kay forgot that Rodgers was out of this game due to the NFL’s health and safety protocols. He was not “banged up.” He was quarantined.
Second, it was a game at Kansas City, which is widely regarded as the loudest and toughest stadium for opposing teams. Oh, and they were the defending Super Bowl Champions. What’s amazing is that Love and Packers hung in as close as they did against a superior opponent, especially considering Love did not have a full week to prepare.
Speaking of superior opponents, Patrick Mahomes was 20 for 37 for 166 yards and one touchdown in that game. So, Kay (and many others) are using a game in which Love threw for more yards and just as many touchdowns as one of the best quarterbacks of his generation as a reason to discourage optimism for his future.
Jordan Love and the Green Bay Packers have a great deal to prove this season. Indeed, no one knows for sure just how good he and the team will be in 2023. They have to prove themselves.
That being said, any criticism of Love, or predictions that he will fail, that are based on his limited playing time or his lone NFL start are simply lazy arguments. This isn’t 2021.