There is no denying the biggest headline entering the 2022 season for the Green Bay Packers is the expectations coming from the wide receiver position.
Among the blockbuster trades throughout the offseason, Green Bay found themselves headlining perhaps the biggest when they sent Davante Adams to the Las Vegas Raiders.
Through the draft, Green Bay selected WR Christain Watson out of North Dakota State and WR Romeo Doubs out of Nevada. They also signed veteran WR Sammy Watkins to pair along with Randall Cobb, Allen Lazard, and Amari Rodgers.
One could argue that none of those guys are considered the true number one wide receiver. But, on the contrary, the Packers have back-to-back MVP in Aaron Rodgers at quarterback. The belief was and currently still is that his greatness will elevate the play of others.
That wasn’t the case in their Week 1 defeat to the Minnesota Vikings.
The Twitter mob quickly jumped Aaron Rodgers after posting a subpar performance on the road, completing 22 of 34 passes for 195 yards and one interception. Rookie WR Christian Watson had a chance to earn the trust of Aaron Rodgers early on but failed to do so when he dropped a wide-open pass that would have resulted in a game-tying touchdown in the first quarter.
— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) September 11, 2022
It was obvious watching this game that Rodgers hasn’t established the necessary chemistry with any of his wideouts. Throughout training camp, we heard the potential Romeo Doubs has. We saw some flashy plays in the preseason from him.
Nevertheless, preseason football is hard to judge since most starters do not see the field. That’s probably why Rodgers has been critical of his young wideouts throughout camp.
Thus far, it seems Rodgers’ criticism has been fair as the youngsters failed to create any separation against the Viking’s secondary. Resulting in Minnesota swarming Rodgers in the backfield. Rodgers was sacked four times and fumbled once under duress.
And his frustration was clear on the bench…
Aaron Rodgers showing some frustration on the sideline. pic.twitter.com/YXfuKilYPN
— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) September 11, 2022
Oddly enough, the Packers strayed away from their rushing attack, averaging 6.2 yards per carry. 18 carries from the backfield is simply not enough. The Packers must be a run-centric offense that will allow Rodgers to feed off it and hit explosive plays down the field.
Overreaction Monday will always be a harsh reality in the NFL. But, there are many different ways to look at this loss and not see trouble in paradise.
First off, it’s Week 1. Many odd things happen in Week 1. Secondly, the Minnesota Vikings are a good football team.
They have split the season series with Green Bay over the last two seasons, with Davante Adams on the roster. Thirdly, the Packers were missing their starting LT and RT.
The front was struggling to give Rodgers time in the pocket, as this snapshot shows.
People want to make a lot of comments about the production of the #Packers wide receivers.
Recieving production comes when you have good blocking. https://t.co/NdOzbUkB0B
— Bruce Irons – Packers FTW (@BruceIronsNFL) September 12, 2022
Most importantly, it takes time to develop chemistry. There were many setbacks in this Week 1 game against Minnesota, and Green Bay fans should expect many more hiccups. But, over time, the Packers will hit their stride, and this wide receiver group will blossom.
The young guys are still learning this offense and building a rapport with their quarterback. One of the reasons Rodgers and Adams were among the best duos in the NFL was because they trusted each other.
Rodgers knew where Adams was going to be on a particular route. He knew how he would break on his routes and off the line of scrimmage. Their sense of timing with one another was second to none. Rodgers has had barely any real playing experience with these young cats.
What Rodgers Had To Say After The Game
Aaron Rodgers on Christian Watson’s dropped touchdown pass and patience needed with young receivers. #GoPackGo #packers #PackersTwitter #PackersFans #GreenBayPackers pic.twitter.com/X6z6yp2VaG
— Postgame Central (@PostgameCentral) September 12, 2022
For all the Packers fans hitting the panic button today, take a deep breath. Green Bay hosts Chicago on Sunday Night Football next week.