Where do the New England Patriots go from here? Are they going to continue to underwhelm in the preseason? Will there be more positive signs on offense in the second preseason contest? It is not easy to judge the team on the first game after training camp, but Bill Belichick did mention that many offensive linemen were hobbled. Bailey Zappe completed all but two of his 14 pass attempts in the game against the Texans. However, New England mustered just nine points in the game. If Zappe is going to be able to compete for the starting job, he will have to put up more than three points in just over a half of football.
On the other sideline for Saturday’s contest will be the new-look Green Bay Packers, who will finally be fashioning a new quarterback. Aaron Rodgers took a seemingly endless amount of time to finally sign with the New York Jets. The next man up is Jordan Love. The 26th overall pick in the 2020 draft had his fair share of strong performances at Utah State. Yet, the Packers are giving the keys to a 24-year-old quarterback who has completed 50 passes in the league. He has yet to throw a pass in the postseason, so let us see how he can handle the starting duties in the NFL.
New England Patriots vs. Green Bay Packers Pregame Analysis
The Patriots and Packers had a joint practice this past week, which was heated but also respectful. It should be fun to see these teams take the field on Saturday. For the Patriots, it will most likely be the 2023 preseason debut of both Mac Jones and Ezekiel Elliott. It should be interesting to see how much work Elliott gets against the Packers. Bill O’Brien offered up some impressive words to describe the former Cowboys back:
Bill O'Brien on Ezekiel Elliott: "He's a three-down back" pic.twitter.com/DrpSJRBxPb
— NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSBoston) August 18, 2023
It will be interesting to see if quarterback Malik Cunningham can get some good reps as well on Saturday. He sure took advantage of his time during the first preseason game. He scored the only touchdown for the Patriots:
.@MalikMalikc10 breaking ankles.
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) August 11, 2023
Now we are onto the green and gold: Jordan Love and his supporting cast. Head coach Matt LaFleur led the Packers to 13 wins every year from 2019 to 2021, but the team dipped to an 8-9 record in 2022. What can Love do to turn around the squad? Even with Allen Lazard following Rodgers to New York and Robert Tonyan now a Bear, Love still has some pretty good targets:
Packers’ QB Jordan Love with a perfect throw to WR Romeo Doubs.
— NFL Talk (@NFL_Talk_Sports) August 9, 2023
All lines and odds courtesy of BetMGM.
Betting Info for New England Patriots vs. Green Bay Packers
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New England Patriots +120
Green Bay Packers -145
New England Patriots +2.5 (-110)
Green Bay Packers -2.5 (-110)
New England Patriots-Green Bay Packers O/U 37 (-110/-110)
Picks and Predictions for the New England Patriots vs. Green Bay Packers
New England Patriots
There is value with the Patriots in this contest, as we are not sure how many reps each quarterback will get. If Zappe takes gets a similar number of pass attempts this time around, he is bound to get the team into the end zone. New England allowed touchdowns in the second, third, and fourth quarters last week. Maybe the Pats can hold onto an early lead this week.