Now that the 2018 NFL season is done, all football fans get the chance to recharge their batteries in the off-season and review how their team did. For those who follow the Green Bay Packers, it is fair to say that 2018 was not the best campaign they have seen in recent times.
Star quarterback Aaron Rodgers started off the season by blasting teammates in training camp, and this seemed to set the tone for an unsettled year. All this culminated in head coach Mike McCarthy being fired after a loss to the Arizona Cardinals in week 13.
However, a new season brings fresh hope, and this is certainly what most Packers fans will be feeling. With new head coach Matt LaFleur coming in from the Tennessee Titans to start a new era, there is a real chance to build a strong team around star man Rodgers and have a great 2019.
What are the Packers’ chances for next season?
A lot will depend on which players come and go under LaFleur and how he sets up the team. The early indications from sportsbook operators online seems to suggest that it could be a great season though. Marked up at around 10/1 already, this puts the Packers among the favorites to claim the NFC crown. It would be well worth keeping an eye on the odds given as the season moves on to really get a better idea of how the Packers will fare.
The experts at sports betting sites really are among your best sources for gauging the chances of a deep run this season. If you live in New Jersey, there are a few NJ online sportsbook promo codes on the internet to take advantage of while you’re over there. The same is true for other parts of the US where online sportsbook gambling is legal.
Where do the Packers need to improve?
To really make a go of next season and hopefully win the Super Bowl, there are some key areas in which the Packers need to strengthen:
- Find a way to make the most of Rodgers –there is no doubt that Rodgers is a top, top player. There is also no doubt that they certainly did not make the most of his talents or work hard enough to protect him last season. This means that new coach LaFleur must make his main priority building a team that gets the best from Rodgers and helps him to flourish. If he does well, then the Packers will do well also.
- Refresh the offensive strategies –one of the main frustrations for Packers fans last year was an offensive set of plays that just did not come together. Whether it was bad calls from McCarthy or Rodgers not following the agreed plan, something needs to change here. Hopefully, LaFleur can do this as his previous role was offensive coach at the Titans. Key here is to build a set of plays that Rodgers is happy with and that the receivers can actually pull off.
- Beef up the defense –as well as making their offense more powerful and effective, the Packers’ defense could use some work. During the last two years, Rodgers has been sacked over 100 times, which is a shocking stat. The Packers simply need to give him more protection. In terms of pure defense against other teams, they do have a solid base to build on with players such as Jaire Alexander and Kevin King. However, you feel that a top-class, dominant defensive lineman or two is needed to really make them stronger.
- Make the right free agent and draft calls –LaFleur will have to be on his mettle when choosing which free agents to sign and which players to draft. Many think that free agent Earl Thomas is a good move as he would bring experience, great communication and hard work to the defensive side. On the draft side of things, it is more a case of the Packers identifying which positions they need to be better in first. Many think that a top-class edge pass rusher is a must along with a wide receiver and tight end guard.
2019 could be a great year for the Packers
Moving on from the McCarthy era was always going to be tough, but the 100th NFL season in 2019 could be a great year for Green Bay. LaFleur is a decent coach and will surely bring fresh ideas and impetus to the team. If he can get Rodgers on-side with his thinking and strengthen in the above key areas, then Packers fans should have a good year.