Thoughts From the Green Bay Packers Versus the Kansas City Chiefs (12/3/2023)
My thoughts from last night's Green Bay Packers' 27-19 win over the Kansas City Chiefs:
Green Bay is giving a new definition to the term "rebuild." The Packers, like most teams, might not have used that word but that's what this season was supposed to be. The willingness to part ways with a veteran player like Rasul Douglas mid-season is evidence of that. However, Green Bay is proving a rebuild year doesn't need to mean you finish near the bottom in the league. If the season ended today, they'd be in the playoffs with two key wins that should make the higher seeded teams a bit nervous.
Jordan Love for League MVP? OK, this is admittedly an overreaction from the Packers reaching .500 on the season. Or is it? Statistically, he's right up there with the MVP favorites and he's putting up those numbers with rookie and second year receivers. If the Packers finish the year in the playoffs, I think he needs to at least be in the conversation. I mean, did you see that 33-yard on-the-money throw to Romeo Doubs in triple coverage?
This was a breakout game for Christian Watson. He was drafted to be the number one receiver and looked like it with seven catches, two touchdowns and 87 receiving/rush yards. I just hope that late game injury (which seemed to be to his hamstring) doesn't once again leave him on the sidelines for an extended period of time, slowing his development.
This game made me wonder about Aaron Jones' future with the team. Jones has a ton of big play ability but much like Watson, can't seem to stay healthy. On top of it, Green Bay is proving it can win without him. At this point, it feels like they will choose to move on from him next season unless he takes a pay cut.
AJ Dillon on the other hand may have secured his future. I don't think the Packers will want to overpay him but after a slow start, I think he's done enough to warrant a contract extension offer. Dillon isn't as explosive as Jones but can pound the ball when needed and even more importantly, has been available to play despite a groin injury.
People will talk about the uncalled pass interference penalty on the Chiefs' final drive. And I'll be the first to admit it maybe should have been called. However, I'll also be the first to argue the pass interference penalty earlier in the game was borderline at best and the unnecessary roughness penalty on Jonathan Owens for hitting Maholmes shouldn't have been called at all (he looked like he was going out of bounds but was still making forward progress and I didn't hear a whistle). So, in other words, I think the overall bad officiating on three separate plays balanced out.