Packers offense must improve this key third down stat in 2024

Green Bay Packers quarterback Jordan Love
Green Bay Packers quarterback Jordan Love / Michael Owens/GettyImages

A game can be won or lost on third down, but a team that can avoid it entirely will have a much better chance of coming out victorious. Being able to move the chains in two downs or less will result in an offense being able to score points in bunches and winning games at a consistently high rate, two things any team wants to accomplish in any given season.

For the Green Bay Packers last season, they were relatively average in that department, ranking 18th overall (per Warren Sharp of Sharp Football Analysis).

Only four teams ranked lower than the Packers last year and still qualified for the postseason (Houston, Cleveland, Tampa Bay, and Pittsburgh). Being ranked in the bottom half of this list is not all that surprising, considering they were just one game over .500 on the year (9-8) while handing the reins of the offense to Jordan Love in his first year as starting quarterback.

Packers offense has work to do on third down in 2024

Everyone knew there was going to be a learning curve with Love taking over the departed Aaron Rodgers, and there was clear evidence of that with their success of avoiding third down dropping last season. In Rodgers' final year, Green Bay was the number three team and was the highest-ranked team to miss the postseason (Atlanta was the next team on the list to not make the playoffs, ranking 10th in this metric).

The good news here is that the Packers did not completely bottom out last season with Love in Rodgers' place, but there is clearly some room for improvement here.

Expect Green Bay to be better next season when it comes to avoiding third down. Love has one full season as a starter under his belt now and is only going to become more comfortable in the offense of head coach Matt LaFleur. This combination will lead to a more successful offensive attack in addition to being more consistent and should result in the Packers being able to pick up first downs without the need to go to third down.

If this can be accomplished, Green Bay will easily win more games in 2024 and could even challenge the Detroit Lions for their rightful place atop the NFC North. Anything is possible, but it all starts with facing third down less frequently.

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