With the Packers regular season getting closer, it’s time to make predictions based on preseason games and training camp. The team overall has looked promising and could surprise a lot of people this year. I had extremely medial expectations for Jordan Love but it has been a pleasant surprise to see him play this well. There are a few question marks left still, like with how bad Josh Myers is and whether or not any of our safety’s are even starting caliber. Hopefully, everything will be sorted out before week 1 so we can walk into Soldier Field and show that we still own the Bears.
Prediction 1: Jordan Love Takes the League by Storm
This is probably the most unlikely scenario out of them all, but I would absolutely love to see it. In the few drives Jordan Love has played in the preseason, he is 12/18 for 130 yards and 2 touchdowns. He has achieved this in less time than 1 half of football. Even in camp, he looks promising. He has really solid connections with Watson and Doubs already but has since hit Reed and Musgrave for huge gains. Of course, he has had his down days where he throws terrible interceptions or just can’t seem to hit the side of a barn. Those days aren’t that frequent anymore and Love has drastically improved since day one. For him to really come on full force, everyone on the offense needs to perform at an elite level, but that is easier said than done. There are a lot of new and inexperienced receivers that Love is going to rely on and unlike Watson in week 1 last year, they need to come in and make the big plays out of the gate. Overall I’m excited to see how Love performs and hope to the highest power that he is the next Mahomes. Realistically he’s going to throw for 3500 yards, 26 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions, which isn’t horrible by any means but we will need better if we want to contend.
Prediction 2: Carrington Valentine Takes Eric Stokes Job
Eric Stokes in his rookie year was extremely talented. Coming into his second year, everyone was expecting him to take another leap into being another lockdown corner with Jaire. That unfortunately did not happen and he was burnt toast in every game he played until he got hurt in week 9. The Packers may have found another gem at corner with 7th-round draft pick Carrington Valentine. He has looked like an elite-level talent in camp and in games. He has 6 tackles and 5 passes defended in the 2 preseason games so far and posted a phenomenal 89.8 grade for his performance against the Bengals. He’s giving me prime Sam Shields flashbacks, and if he can replicate that kind of success (without constantly being injured) he can solidify his place in the already elite cornerback room in Green Bay. There are questions on whether or not he can perform this well against starting-caliber players, but I have a lot of faith in his skill based on what I’ve seen so far.
Prediction 3: Jaire is Top 3 in DPOY Voting
Jaire is primed for an all-time great season this year. He finished last year off on a hot streak and locked down the best wide receiver in the league. He had 5 interceptions (career high) and 14 passes defended (second highest) in the 2022 season. This upcoming year he has to guard Justin Jefferson twice, Amon-Ra St. Brown twice, DJ Moore twice, Davante Adams, Cooper Kupp, Keenan Allen/Mike Willaims, and Mike Evans. Those are just the guys that are considered to be elite/borderline elite in the league. Guys like Chris Olave, Drake London, and Jerry Juedy are not to be slept on even though they are not as good as the other receivers listed before. If Jaire can have an even better year than last while guarding some of the best wide receivers in the league, he would have to be in consideration for DPOY. There are outside factors like injuries and defensive play calling, but if the defense can play at an elite level all year led by Jaire we could see something special. Joe Barry needs to let this man do his thing as he allowed him to against Jefferson in week 17 for any kind of success this year on defense. The front 7 also needs to play at an elite level, which won’t be hard to ask for due to the insane amount of talent we have there. Gary will be back in week 1 tearing it up, Smith will be consistent if Gary is there, Clark is always solid, and Campbell and Walker will have much better years this year without a doubt in my mind. I get that most people won’t agree, but Jaire is a generational corner that needs some more recognition for his elite talent.