With the NFC North getting to face off against the NFC South in 2023, the Green Bay Packers will get to play four teams they typically don’t see during the regular season. With a lot of turnover happening in the NFC South, there is a possibility for the Packers to win all four games against this division.
With question marks all around their roster, the Atlanta Falcons decided to use the eighth overall selection on Texas running back Bijan Robinson, one of the best running back prospects in the past 10+ years. But using high draft capital at a position with tons of early turnover can easily set a franchise back, which the Falcons hope doesn’t impact them.
The Packers travel to Atlanta in Week 2 in a matchup of teams with young quarterbacks with little starting experience. Desmond Ridder earned the trust of the coaching staff all throughout the off-season and the NFL Draft, but former Commanders QB Taylor Heinicke was signed to challenge Ridder.
A revamped defense with safety Jessie Bates III should make this team a sneaky choice to win the division, but catching them early in the season may be a big-time benefit for the Packers.
First-overall pick Bryce Young is primed and ready to be the next franchise QB for the Carolina Panthers, who are still trying to figure out their identity. Having traded Christian McCaffrey last year and DJ Moore this off-season has left the offense without a proven offensive weapon, which Green Bay will look to take advantage of in their Week 16 road tilt.
A solid offensive line and a new RB in Miles Sanders will provide plenty of help for Young, who will need to hold off Andy Dalton in any camp battles. Carolina is in the same conversation as the Falcons in terms of being a sneaky division winner, but that all rests on the shoulders of their new QB.
New Orleans Saints
Derek Carr is the new starting QB for the New Orleans Saints, who are still searching for that long-term solution after Drew Brees’ retirement. The ongoing legal situation involving Alvin Kamara will dictate what kind of an offensive attack NO has, but they did add old friend Jamaal Williams to help bridge that gap, who we will see Week 3 at home.
Defensively, they are an older unit, with Tyrann Mathieu and Marcus Maye as their two 30+-year-old safeties, and LB Demario Davis is still one of the defensive leaders at 34. The Saints are going to be a tough team to project this year, but the cohesion of Carr with the offense, the future of Kamara, and the health of Michael Thomas will all impact that final outcome.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Gone is Tom Brady, and to replace him the battle is between Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask, two very unimpressive names. Leonard Fournette was released, paving the way for Rachaad White to assume lead-back duties, a big uncertainty to worry about.
Mike Evans and Chris Godwin will likely see a downtick in consistent work this year because of not catching balls from Tom Brady, but they are still one of the most dangerous 1-2 combos in the whole league. The Week 15 matchup in Green Bay will be a very cold game and one that most players for the Buccaneers are not well-equipped for, something that should benefit Green Bay.
The defense is still quite strong under Todd Bowles, so this team is still going to be tough to get through – but all of their success rests on the QB room.뿓뿓뿓
Mike Johrendt has been an avid fan of the Packers ever since he can remember. He is now a writer at PackersTalk and you can follow him on Twitter at @MJohrendt23