Packers: 3 bold predictions for Week 3 game vs. Saints

Green Bay Packers, Robert Tonyan (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Robert Tonyan (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
2 of 4
Green Bay Packers, Chandon Sullivan
Green Bay Packers, Chandon Sullivan (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

1. Packers defense has answer for Saints passing offense

Sans star wide receiver Michael Thomas, New Orleans’ passing game didn’t impress a whole lot in Monday night’s loss at Las Vegas. Throwing the football 38 times, Drew Brees finished the game with 312 yards, one touchdown, and a costly interception.

It’s only Week 3, but there have been some early signs that Brees isn’t the same player he once was. According to ESPN Stats & Info, Brees is averaging 4.82 air yards per pass this season, the lowest by any quarterback through two games since 2009. Brees will look to pass short and get the ball out quickly with his receivers picking up yards after the catch.

Likely without Thomas again this week, I have confidence the Packers can slow down the Saints through the air.

Emmanuel Sanders has made a slow start with just four catches for 33 yards and a touchdown through two games. Including the playoffs, the Packers came up against Sanders three times last season (against both the Denver Broncos and San Francisco 49ers) and had great success. Sanders managed just three receptions on seven targets for 25 yards in those games.

Jaire Alexander dominated the matchup against Sanders in Week 3 last season, and we could see the Packers’ star cornerback covering Sanders often again here.

Brees is still a great quarterback and has plenty of pass-catching options including Sanders, Alvin Kamara, and Jared Cook. But the Packers’ strength defensively is stopping the pass. If Brees isn’t back to his best, Green Bay’s defense can win this battle.