Boat raced. Decimated. Choose whatever description you want to summarize Green Bay’s blowout loss to the New Orleans Saints. No matter how you paint it, the result’s the same: In their 38-3 loss to the Saints, the Packers looked far away from the team that has reached the NFC Championship Game in each of the last two seasons. Green Bay turned the shock 3 times, was outgained 322-229, and finished just 1-for-10 on third down. Aaron Rodgers had one of the worst outings of his career, finishing with a paltry 133 passing yards, two interceptions, and a 36.8 passer rating.
The rating was his lowest since Week 15 of 2014, while his passing yards total was his worst since Week 8 of 2015, per NFL Research. His 53.5 completion percentage was his lowest since Week 15 of 2014. And to cap it all off, Rodgers has never lost a game by this wide of a margin: 35 points. “This may be a good kick within the you-know-where to hopefully get us getting into the proper direction,” Rodgers said. New Orleans, meanwhile, enjoyed great offensive success, as new starter Jameis Winston threw for five touchdown passes, and Alvin Kamara posted a per-carry average over four yards. The Saints converted half their third-down attempts and only punted twice all afternoon.
“I don’t even skill many stops we had on their offense the whole day,” Packers coach Matt LaFleur said. “It was just an all-around poor performance. That starts with me. Obviously didn’t get these guys able to play.” Green Bay’s no-show in Week 1 might rattle folks who see the Packers as a legitimate NFC contender. But it’d just be a case of the Saints preparing and playing better — far better — than their opponent. “They beat us. They played way better than us,” Rodgers said. “We played bad. I played badly. uncharacteristic how we’ve practiced in training camp, obviously how I’ve played over the years. this is often hopefully an outlier moving forward. We’ll determine next week.”
Consider: Last season, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers suffered an embarrassing loss to the Saints on Sunday Night Football by the precise same final score of 38-3. They went on to win the Super Bowl. For now, though, the Packers have only this result. it’ll sting, but they’ll follow the 24-hour rule before moving on to urge able to face their Week 2 opponent, the 0-1 Detroit Lions. about one NFC North team lost Sunday, with the Bears’ result still pending on Sunday night. it isn’t as if the Packers just dug themselves a huge hole.
It’ll be far away from a Victory Monday for the Packers, who might see Sunday’s blowout loss as a positive in hindsight a couple of months from now. which will only become a reality if they apply the teachings learned. One thing is actually guaranteed: LaFleur will make a stronger effort to properly prepare his team. As Rodgers said, we’ll see next week whether it pays off.