Midway through the season last year, the avalanche of negativity toward the Packers’ offense, defense, Jordan Love and even Matt LaFleur led me to start a weekly Packers Positives column that highlighted some thing to be excited about each week. We’re in a lot better place now as fans but there are still some under the radar and on (?) the radar things to be positive about. Let’s go over some of the main ones.

  • Christian Watson and Eric Stokes both have reportedly found a potential solution to their injury woes. Watson needs to strengthen his weaker hamstring and Stokes needs to stabilize his calf. Who knows if either of these solutions will work, but the NFL spent $4mm trying to figure it out and both of these guys are crucial for the Packers to hit their ceiling.
  • Jordan Love looked like a top-5 QB in the second half of the season last year and despite what Vikings podcast hosts who once claimed Sam Bradford would be better than Aaron Rodgers write, he looks to be even more comfortable in the offense and with his receivers going into this season.
  • Though the Packers don’t have a true number one receiver, it is because they have four guys who could all be a true number one in any game and another three or four (including tight ends) who could put up 100 yards any week. The lack of number 1 receiver could be a strength, not a weakness, for this team.  
  • The offensive line was, again, premier last season and the players they lost (Runyan, injured Bakhtiari, pouting Nijman) are definitely replaceable. In fact, there’s a good chance that the line could be better if certain players were moved around.
  • Each of the team’s recent high picks who has underperformed career-to-date (Eric Stokes, Devonte Wyatt, Quay Walker) is a much better fit in Jeff Hafley’s defense. I think it was Ross Uglem who talked about how Gutekunst has a tendency to draft player who fit the new scheme much better than the Barry scheme. That what happens when you go to a poorly coached complicated scheme to one where players can just line up and play.
  •  Rashan Gary will be in his second year back from injury, Lukas Van Ness should take a step forward in his sophomore season, Kenny Clark and Preston Smith won’t have to play as many snaps, and each of the 3-techs will be used better. It would be shocking if the d-line wasn’t substantially better this season.
  • There’s at least one layer of depth at every spot. Carrington Valentine, Lukas Van Ness, Devonte Wyatt, Isaiah McDuffie and Kitan Oladapo can all fill in for long swaths of time and a few of those guys have the potential to be plus starters.
  • The NFL changed the kickoff rules to incentivize returns and the Packers have the best returner in the league.
  • Matt LaFleur proved that Packers fans should be optimistic for every season that he is head coach last year. Some people think that he has found the defensive version of himself with Jeff Hafler. If that is the case, the Packers are in for another great year.

Mike Price is a lifelong Packers fan currently living in Utah. You can follow him on twitter at @themikeprice.