Packers vs Saints: Three things to watch in Week 7 matchup

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 15: Brett Hundley /

The Green Bay Packers return to Lambeau after playing two consecutive games on the road to take on Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints. But they will be without their leader Aaron Rodgers

Rodgers suffered a broken collarbone in the first quarter of Week 6 against the Minnesota Vikings. According to coach head coach Mike McCarthy, Rodgers will need surgery and could miss the rest of the season. 

As for the Saints, they come to Packers News riding a three-game win streak, with their latest victory coming against the Detroit Lions, 52-38. 

Here are my three things to watch. 

Brett Hundley time

With Rodgers out, it’s time for Hundley to make a name for himself. He struggled last week against the Vikings completing only 18 of 33 passes for 157 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions.

In his defense, the offensive line was in shambles because of injury and he was constantly under pressure.

Sunday against the Saints will be Hundley’s first career NFL start since being drafted by the Packers in the fifth round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

Despite the lack of experience, McCarthy is comfortable moving forward with Hundley and Joe Callahan, who was recently promoted from the practice squad.

"“I’ve got three years invested in Brett Hundley, I’ve got great confidence in Brett Hundley, I’ve got two years invested in Joe Callahan,” McCarthy said. “It’s a quarterback room that has structure and has a philosophy behind the development of it.”"

This is a great opportunity for Hundley’s future. He is set to become an unrestricted free agent in 2019 and is itching to showcase his abilities.

If Hundley excels and gets the Packers into the playoffs, he will get paid and have an opportunity to be a starting quarterback in the NFL. But, it is a lot easier said than done and he will need his teammates to step up.

Offensive line trouble

A group of teammates that will need to step up if they want Hundley to play well is the offensive line unit. More importantly, they need to get healthy.

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Last Sunday was the first time this season that all five starting linemen were on the field together, and it didn’t last long.

Bryan Bulaga (concussion), David Bakhtiari (hamstring) and Lane Taylor (ankle) were all forced out of the game and did not return. This was Bakhtiari’s first game back since injuring his hamstring in Week 1 against the Seahawks.

The Packers were left with Justin McCray, who has started in three games; Ulrick John, who the Packers signed from the Arizona Cardinals practice squad in September; and Lucas Patrick who was an undrafted free agent signed by Green Bay in 2016.

Hundley was running for his life for a majority of last week and was sacked four times. If this group can not get healthy, the season will go downhill even quicker, especially with Rodgers gone.

Secondary health

Another unit that is struggling to stay on the field is the Packers secondary.

Last week they were without safety Morgan Burnett and corners Davon House and Kevin King. During the game they lost Quinten Rollins with an Achilles injury. Rollins has since been placed on injured reserve.

House and King both returned to practice on Wednesday, but Burnett remains out with a hamstring injury.

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Brees will have a field day and the Saints will easily score points if the Packers are missing two or more of these guys on Sunday.