The Green Bay Packers appear to have a new identity this season after investing heavily into their defense. Everyone should know by now that the Packers will go onto the field with the league’s best cornerback trio, a revamped linebacker core, and one of the best defensive lines this team has had in years. To put it simply, the Packers have a championship-level defense, but the group will need to prove themselves first. Therefore, let’s start previewing some of the top QBs the Packers will face this season.
Week 3 vs Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Months ago, this Week 3 opponent didn’t appear as daunting. With the return of quarterback Tom Brady after a brief retirement, this game could be a potential playoff preview. Brady alone has put fear into the heart of opposing defenses his entire career while becoming an all-time great in the world of sports. However, the 44-year-old hasn’t had much experience against the Green Bay Packers during his 23-year career.
Brady has only faced off against the Packers seven times in his career, most recently in the 2021 NFC Championship Game where he halted the Packers from advancing to the Super Bowl while hoisting the Lombardi Trophy himself. The seven-time Super Bowl champion has shown zero signs of slowing down after leading the league in passing yards, pass attempts, passing touchdowns, and had the lowest sack percentage among qualified quarterbacks last year. The Packers’ defense will have their hands full going up against him. But, it’s not just Brady that the Packers will have to worry about that day.
If Aaron Rodgers has a kryptonite, it seems to be playing in Raymond James Stadium. Against the Buccaneers, Rodgers holds a record of 2-3, which becomes a 1-3 record while playing in Tampa Bay. Rodgers has thrown five touchdowns against eight interceptions in those four games. If you factor in last year’s Week 1 loss to the New Orleans Saints, which was also played at Raymond James Stadium, Rodgers tossed two additional interceptions and failed to record a touchdown.
There’s no debate that Week 3’s match-up between the two teams will be a pivotal game early on in the season. Rodgers will be forced to overcome his demons in Tampa Bay while the Packers’ defense will look to hold off one of the best quarterbacks of all time.
Week 8 vs Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills
On paper, the Buffalo Bills appear to have the strongest overall roster in the entire league led by a young superstar quarterback in Josh Allen. With Allen, Stefon Diggs, and a young promising offensive core, the Packers’ defense will have a tough ask in Week 8. Allen is emerging as one of the league’s top quarterbacks before our very eyes and a big game against a top defense could further his case, unless the Packers have something to say about it.
According to Vegas Insider, Josh Allen looks to open the season having the best odds to win the NFL MVP award, currently sitting at +700. Should the odds speak the truth, Allen could strip Rodgers of the award that he won the past two seasons. Vegas has high expectations of Allen this season and they’re far from the only ones who share that belief. Multiple media outlets have been praising Allen and the Buffalo Bills going into this season as the potential top team in the league.
Our very own PJ Roden brought up a good point earlier this week that it’s a crime this match-up between the Packers and Bills couldn’t be a December snow game. Nevertheless, this will be yet another top quarterback opponent in a game worth marking on the calendar to get a better look at how the Packers’ defense will fare this season.
Week 15 vs Matthew Stafford and the Los Angeles Rams
The Packers have a deep history of facing off against Matthew Stafford over the years during his 12-year career in the NFC North playing for the Detroit Lions. Now with the Los Angeles Rams, the Packers/Stafford rivalry continued after the Packers’ 36-28 victory over the Stafford-led Rams last November.
In his career against the Packers, Stafford holds a 7-13 record, including a 4-12 head-to-head record against Rodgers. Week 15’s matchup against the two teams will be held in what could be a snowy environment at Lambeau Field, a place where Stafford boasts a 3-7 record. Stafford for years has been accustomed to the Packers’ “home-field advantage” and enjoys the challenge of entering Green Bay in the winter months.
“I love playing in the snow there,” Stafford told ESPN last November. “That’s what you dream about as a kid is getting to play the Packers at Lambeau Field in the snow.”
In their previous match-up last season, Green Bay relied heavily on their offense and their passing attack, which topped over 300-yards. The Packers’ defense baited Stafford into the game’s lone interception while forcing one of the Rams’ two team fumbles.
As the season progressed, the Rams and their new quarterback went on to win Super Bowl LVI over the Cincinnati Bengals. For this year’s matchup, Stafford will look to get revenge over his long-time rival while the Packers will look to get a potential late-season win over the defending champs.——————
Kole Noble is a lifelong Packers fan currently living in North Carolina and is a huge NFL Draft nut. You can follow him on twitter at @SlawSportsShow.