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Jordan Love looking like fool’s gold for the Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Packers quarterback Jordan Love entered the 2023 campaign as only the team’s third full-time starter since the 1991 NFL season.

Love, 24, knew he was facing a difficult task in replacing future Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers. It was not lost on the former first-round pick.

For at least the first two games of the season, it seemed as if Green Bay had found itself yet another quarterback to continue the lineage from Brett Favre and the aforementioned Rodgers to Love. This included the Utah State product tallying six touchdown passes against zero interceptions.

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Since then, it’s been completely downhill for the young quarterback. Love threw three interceptions in Monday night’s ugly 17-13 road loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. The first interception into the hands of Raiders linebacker Robert Spillane showed a lack of both field awareness and vision.

Even though this represented just Love’s sixth career regular-season start, you can’t make a mistake like that and expect to be taken seriously as a starting NFL quarterback. He didn’t recognize the underneath coverage, went with his first read and simply threw the ball blindly.

Love then threw yet another interception into the hands of Spillane on a tipped pass with the Packers down 17-13 about midway through the fourth quarter and in the Raiders’ end of the field.

Again, we’re not sure where Love was looking at here. The Raiders had multiple defenders in the vicinity of young wide receiver Christian Watson. Instead of looking for his second and third read, the youngster attempted to fit this into a tight window.

The end result was n pick by a backer in Spillane who had one career interception in five-plus seasons while having yielded a 109.2 QB rating in coverage with the Pittsburgh Steelers last year.

  • Jordan Love stats (past three games): 55% completion, 687 yards, 2 TD, 6 INT, 57.7 QB rating

Love’s third interception of the game came after Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels shockingly attempted to kick a 57-yard field goal. Daniel Carlson’s kick hit the upright, giving Green Bay great field position at its own 42 down by four and just under two minutes remaining.

This one is harder to blame on Love in that he was facing 3rd-and-10 while being flushed from the pocket. After all, Green Bay is without Pro Bowl left tackle David Bakhtiari. Even then, he floated it down the field in hopes that Watson would somehow come away with the catch. It did not happen, leading the Packers falling to 2-3 on the season.

Related: Jordan Love standing among NFL starting QBs

Stats and tape are not friendly for Jordan Love

NFL: Green Bay Packers at Las Vegas Raiders
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Overall this season, Love is completing less than 60% of his passes. That’s the bare minimum threshold for a starter-caliber quarterback in the NFL.

Sure, he’s come up with huge plays throughout the young part of the season. That included averaging 12.2 yards per completion heading into Week 5.

However, it’s the lack of consistency that should have the Packers concerned. Love is missing those intermediate passes. He’s struggling getting beyond his first read. These two factors don’t generally indicate success at the NFL level for a quarterback.

There is also some concern that opposing teams now have tape on Love after a handful of starts. We saw that with the Raiders masking their coverage Monday night. Note how both of Love’s first two interceptions came with backers dropping back in coverage underneath. Raiders defensive coordinator Patrick Graham likely saw the one-read mentality of Love during tape sessions heading into Monday night, and schemed in that direction.

“Just decision making with the ball. That was just a very bad read,” Love told reporters after the game about his first interception Monday night.

Recognizing it after the game is one thing. Making sure it doesn’t happen on a consistent basis like we saw Monday evening in Vegas is a completely different thing.

“We miss Aaron Jones being out there. But that’s not an excuse. We have to find a way to win,” Love said.

It’s true that the Packers were without their Pro Bowl running back. But they were facing a Raiders defense that had registered one takeaway through the first four games of the season. Somehow, Love made them look like the 2023 iteration of the 49ers defense. That’s not going to cut it.

Green Bay now heads into its Week 6 bye having to find a way to fix it. This team is two games behind the Detroit Lions in the NFC North and already lost at home to its division rivals.

The good news? Jordan Love and Co. come out of the bye taking on lackluster defenses in that of the Denver Broncos and Minnesota Vikings (combined 22 passing touchdowns and 4 INT against this season). The bad news? Monday night was expected to be a get-right game against one of the worst teams the NFL has to offer.

This does not bode well for Love and the Green Bay Packers moving forward on the season.

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