The Green Bay Packers are playing with house money. Nobody gave them a chance before the regular season, laughing at the possibility of the Packers competing for a playoff spot. And nobody believes in them this week, with the Dallas Cowboys favored by over a touchdown on wild-card weekend.
But that's quite alright for Matt LaFleur's team. They are quietly one of the NFC's hottest teams, having won six of their final eight games, including the previous three. That run includes a road win over the Detroit Lions, a victory over the Kansas City Chiefs, and back-to-back divisional wins with the season on the line.
It has taken contributions on both sides of the ball. In particular, these seven players have dominated down the stretch.
Their stock is soaring as the Packers enter the playoffs.
All you need is Love. Many of Jordan Love's doubters are admitting they were wrong. Others are doubling down on their opinion that he isn't the Packers' future.
But the numbers don't lie. Love has played at an MVP level in Green Bay's final eight games of the regular season, completing 70.3 percent of his passes for 2,150 yards, 18 touchdowns, and only one interception. Love only has one game in that stretch with a passer rating below 100.
It's an ominous sign for the rest of the NFC North entering 2024 and beyond, but it's also a warning to the other playoff teams. Love is playing as well as any quarterback in the league, including the Cowboys' MVP candidate Dak Prescott.
Love's performances go beyond this season; he has proven he is the future. The Packers will already view this year as a success. They enter the playoffs without the weight of expectation or pressure. And with the way Love is playing, Green Bay can cause an upset.