Packers show Super Bowl potential with huge win over Saints

Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

The Packers won a shootout against the Saints to remain undefeated.

Led by Aaron Rodgers at his MVP-best, the Green Bay Packers offense proved their recent performances were no fluke, taking down the New Orleans Saints on the road in Week 3.

Even without Davante Adams, the offense didn’t miss a beat, picking up where it left off last week. With a near-flawless performance, Rodgers looked in control all night, firing to nine different receivers to the tune of 283 yards and three touchdowns.

In need of a pass-catcher to step up in the absence of Adams, Allen Lazard took on the task as he so often has, catching six passes for 146 yards and a touchdown. Not just the numbers, but also the timing of some of Lazard’s catches stood out. It was a career-day for the Packers’ talented receiver.

Aaron Jones looked like Aaron Jones — efficient with the ball in his hands. He didn’t have his biggest performance, but Jones stepped up when the Packers needed him and found the end zone once.

We also saw more from the tight ends at long last. Robert Tonyan led the way with five catches for 50 yards and a touchdown, while Jace Sternberger put last week’s drops behind him, catching all three of his targets for 36 yards.

The Packers will want Adams back as soon as possible, but they’ve proved time and again under Matt LaFleur that they can find new ways to win. They’ve won all five games without Adams since the start of 2019.

Packers defense struggles but makes big plays at key moments

This was set up to be an offensive battle between two great quarterbacks, and the Packers defense struggled. Six defenders missing tackles on Alvin Kamara’s 52-yard catch-and-run touchdown is one they’ll want to forget about quickly, but for the most part this was again a disappointing performance.

When New Orleans opted to run the ball, it did so with success, averaging 6.1 yards per carry from 20 attempts. The biggest problem was trying to stop Kamara through the air; he caught 13 passes for 149 yards and two touchdowns.

However, when it mattered most, the defense came up with some key plays. With the game tied at 27-27, the Saints had former Packer Taysom Hill in at quarterback. Za’Darius Smith made one of the plays of the game, forcing a fumble and then recovering it. After the Packers put up a field goal, the defense forced a three-and-out to ensure the momentum, and the game, was Green Bay’s.

The game was won by the offense, but the defense made some key plays along the way.

With this win, the Packers move to 3-0 and earn a vital tiebreaker over the Saints. With one game left before the bye, Green Bay hosts the Atlanta Falcons at Lambeau Field next Monday night.