After a thrilling Sunday Night Football duel between the Green Bay Packers and the Kansas City Chiefs, the green and gold came out on top. Although Chiefs fans are probably upset by the loss, Packers fans are feeling good about how the team is playing.
Sitting at 3-6 a few weeks ago, Green Bay has won three straight and has a great shot at playing meaningful football late next month. Here are three takeaways from the Packers' 27-19 win over the defending champions.
Jordan Love Is The Future Of The Green Bay Packers
There is no doubt about this anymore. Many questioned whether Love could live up to the hype after following future Hall-of-Fame quarterback Aaron Rodgers. While he struggled earlier in the year, he has been on fire in the last few weeks, throwing eight touchdowns and zero interceptions in his previous three games.
He has made some big throws, including two back-to-back incredible passes. One was to Romeo Doubs on fourth and one, and the other was a great leaping catch by Christian Watson for the touchdown, which extended the Packers' lead to nine.
He made some throws that showed flashes of Aaron Rodgers, and he was very accurate all night. The concerns about his poor completion percentage earlier in the year have faded, as Love has completed over 67% of his passes in four of his last five games. He also has thrown for 250+ yards in four straight games, a mark he hit once in his first eight starts.
Love has 2,866 yards, 22 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions on the season, which is four shy of Rodgers' touchdown mark last year in five fewer games. Love has stepped up in the past few weeks and continues to stay hot.
Joe Barry's Defense Stepped Up When It Mattered The Most
With many first-round picks, millions of dollars, and much work done on the Packers' defense, it should no doubt be a top-ten unit in the NFL. So many criticized defensive coordinator Joe Barry entering the year as it struggled last season incredibly late in the game. But this year, it has kept opposing offenses from having big games. The defense has allowed 20.3 points per game, which ranks as one of the best in the NFL.
Although the Chiefs scored on almost every drive, holding Patrick Mahomes to 19 points is no small feat. Holding the Chargers, Chiefs, and Lions to under 23 points each was impressive. As long as Barry's defense continues to play strong, the Packers will have a chance to win every game.
The NFL's Youngest Team Will Make The Playoffs
A couple of weeks ago, the Packers were 3-6, coming off a tough loss to the Steelers. With games against two Super Bowl contenders and one playoff contender, 3-9 was possible, with playoffs out of reach. But Green Bay swept all three games convincingly and now sits in the NFC playoff picture.
Every team left on the schedule is .500 or below. Sitting at 6-6, the young Packers have proved they can beat the NFL's best, defeating the 9-3 Lions and 8-4 Chiefs in back-to-back weeks. Now they will face the 4-8 Giants, 5-7 Buccaneers, 1-11 Panthers, 6-6 Vikings and 4-8 Bears. While the Vikings and Buccaneers may be tricky, these are all winnable games for the Pack.
It's likely that even if they drop a game or two, they will still be in a prime position to make the playoffs, depending on who they lose to. But a big road matchup in Minnesota on New Year's Eve could decide their fate.
But after their performance vs Kansas City, Green Bay can beat anyone, yet this young team could struggle and drop one or two games. But with how the schedule lines up, it appears that Green Bay will likely return to the playoffs for the fourth time in five years.