Six weeks into the 2022 NFL football season, the Green Bay Packers have raised more questions than they have asked. Nearly every aspect of the team has had problems throughout the season, and while there are still many weeks of football to come, is it already too late for the team to put out the flames?
Quarterback is perhaps the most critical position in football, and a first-ballot HOF player leads the Packers in Aaron Rodgers, but so far, he is showing that not even he can win it all with anybody. There is still a lack of connection between him and most of his receiving core, leading to interceptions, deflected passes, and killed drives. Among that problem, Rodgers has looked inconsistent, especially on his famed deep balls where passes are underthrown, overthrown, or just plain off target. This can be attributed to his receivers not being in the correct spots or fighting for the ball hard enough, but we need to look at our trusty quarterback at some point. Rodgers receives very little support, especially in the receiving core and the ground game.
It isn’t for lack of talent or skill, as Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon are both backs that can pack a punch while also being elusive and shifty. They aren’t being used enough, and their run totals have been abysmal for this particular team. You would think a team in which they are severely lacking in receivers would lean toward their running backs. The offensive line has looked ok thus far into the season if you discount their recent game against the New York Jets, where Quinnen Williams and his defensive line chewed up the Packers offensive line. That is just another problem that this offense will have to solve.
On the defensive side of the ball, they looked primarily outcoached. Yes, there are times when 2nd-year player Eric Stokes gets burned, or rookie Quay Walker has had trouble getting to the ball quickly despite his freakish speed. However, most of the season, the Packers have played off-ball soft coverage leading to easy drives for the opposing offense. This has gotten much better against the Jets, where we saw much more man press. While the defense did give up 27 points to the Jets, if you take away a blocked punt and an offensive turnover that gave the Jets starting field position already in field goal range, then the defense truly gave up 17 points, which isn’t amazing but enough where the offense should still be in the game. At this point, it may only be high hopes for the defense to have a stunning and amazing turnaround; however, that shouldn’t be off the books just as of yet.
Special teams have been a poison for the Green Bay Packers the last handful of years; however, they have been performing at a higher level this year. Even recently, they managed to block a punt; however, they also did have a blocked punt themselves giving up a touchdown. While this is one of the only things that can genuinely be chalked up to a bad week for the Packers, it still isn’t pretty, and the threat of once again having a poor special team looms overhead.
At some point, this boils down to coaching. Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon ultimately don’t control their snap count and have little say in how much they get the ball. Jaire Alexander can’t control whether he gets to play to his strengths in man or play 10 yards off of his target. This isn’t excusing the poor play that the Green Bay Packers have done so far, but the coaching can’t be forgiven, and if this team is to get better, a lot of that has to extend for the coaches.