The Green Bay Packers are in a period of transition. As we head closer towards the 2023 season, there are several key storylines to keep an eye leading up to training camp. Here are the Packers top five storylines:
Jordan Love as QB1
Easily the biggest question mark heading into Packers training camp is how quickly Jordan Love puts his stamp on this team. He is replacing a four-time MVP who has been the face of the franchise for over a decade. After a tumultuous offseason that saw Aaron Rodgers traded to the Jets, Love is tasked with making the Packers his own. Numerous teammates have publicly stated their support for him but it’s to be seen if he can become the new face of this organization. Organized team activities and minicamp will give fans their first real snapshot into the type of leader and player he will be for the Packers this season.
The Packers’ defense has been a weakness in recent years, but not for the lack of resources. The Packers boast 8 first round picks on defense, including 2023 first rounder Lukas Van Ness. They also added veteran safety Jonathan Owens to infuse talent on the backend. Additionally, the return of both Rashan Gary and Eric Stokes from injuries should provide a boost to the defense. Packers fans will be watching closely to see if these moves pay off and if the defense can take a step forward towards consistently good defense in 2023.
Offensive Line Shuffle
The Packers have had a lot of transition in the past few years on the offensive line. With David Bakhtiari finally healthy, he pairs with Elgton Jenkins to make a dominant left side of the line. The other three positions are much more uncertain. Josh Myers is in a make or break it type season at center and the right side of the line is unsettled. While they did not bring in a veteran nor make draft pick to bolster the room, expect an extremely competitive offseason program. Will Yosh Nijman take another step towards becoming a top tackle in the league? What position is the best fit for Zach Tom? Is it Guard? Tackle? Center? These are just a few of the questions that will need to be answered during training camp.
Wide Receiver Depth
The Packers have one of the youngest wide receiver cores in the game with 3 draft picks in each of the last two drafts. They desperately needed to inject athleticism and talent into a position that had become stale with the losses of Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling last offseason and Allen Lazard this year. Nobody can argue that the receiving position in Green Bay isn’t more talented top to bottom this year. Every play oozes with potential, but it’s just that… potential. Beyond the emergence of Christian Watson during his rookie year there is nothing to point to regarding experience. The wide receiver battle in camp will be one of the most watched stories all the way to Week 1 in Chicago.
Special Teams Improvement
The Packers’ special teams unit was finally not one of the worst in the league last season. It could easily be argued that they were the most consistent of the three phases. While they still allowed several big returns and they became a much more fundamentally sound unit. Gone were the multiple miscues on both punts and kickoffs. Now comes making this a habit. Second year coordinator Rich Bisaccia will be focused on continuing this upward trend. He is also tasked with finding a new long snapper as well as developing 6th round rookie kicker Anders Carlson. Training camp will be the first opportunity to see if this coaching staff is up to the task.
The 2023 Packers offseason program will easily be one of the most anticipated in recent memory. With the future of Jordan Love around the corner, the team will be under intense scrutiny as they prepare for the season. However, there are several other key storylines to watch, including the improvement of the defense, the shuffling of the offensive line, the depth at wide receiver, and the special teams unit. One thing is absolutely certain; Packers fans are in for an offseason program unlike anything they have seen in over 15 years.
Jordan is a lifelong Packer fan who grew up in Idaho and now lives in Seattle, Washington. You can follow him on twitter at @jordantwolf.