Green Bay Packers v. Saints: Behind the Numbers

Here is a look at the numbers and stats that help define what was a brutal performance from the Green Bay Packers in their Week 1 loss.

The good news is that it's over. The Green Bay Packers were embarrassed against the New Orleans Saints, losing 38-3, and dominated from start to finish in every aspect of this game.
 
More good news is that it's time to go Behind the Numbers. I've chosen ten stats or figures from Sunday's game that really help encapsulate what we saw. So if you've got the stomach for it, let's take a look back at the key numbers from this ugly performance.

1

This is the number of third downs that the Green Bay Packers converted, and it wouldn't come until the fourth quarter when Jordan Love was in the game. That's right; this offense was unable to move the chains on third down when Aaron Rodgers was in the game. You're not going to win many games going 1/10 in those situations. 
 

3 and 0

Some of the most crucial stats that can determine a game are third downs -- as mentioned above -- red zone success, and the turnover battle. Well, the Packers were awful in all three categories, and when that happens, you're likely going to lose by quite a bit.
 
In addition to going 1/10 on third downs, the Packers lost the turnover battle 3-0 and were 0-2 in the red zone while New Orleans was 4-4. 

102.1

Jordan Love made his NFL regular-season debut on Sunday, and 102.1 was his passer rating. He finished the game going 5/7 for 68 yards with a fumble. As should have been expected, it's not as if he was asked to do a lot and the Saints were playing soft coverage, but he did have a 32-yard completion to Randall Cobb and a 19-yard pass to Amari Rodgers.

0

It's a credit to the New Orleans Saints offensive line, but the Green Bay Packers' pass rush was non-existent on Sunday. According to ESPN, they recorded zero sacks and only logged three quarterback hits on Jameis Winston. Compared to years past, Winston's decision-making did look quite a bit improved as he took what the defense gave him, never really forcing anything, but that's also easier to do when you have all day in the pocket.

55

This is how many yards the touchdown pass from Winston to Deonte Harris was. And yes, Kevin King was in coverage. In looking back at Harris' route, there really was nothing special to it; he just simply ran past King, who then struggled to catch up. 
 
At this point, the game was already out of hand, but nonetheless, it is frustrating to see King involved in another play like this. The Green Bay Packers will need Eric Stokes to be ready sooner than later.

9

Nine is the total number of carries that Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon had during this game. Now, obviously, this game got out of hand, which skewed the numbers, but at about the halfway point in the third quarter, the Packers still found themselves losing by 14, yet Jones and Dillon had six combined carries. Despite being down 17-3, it was still way too early to abandon the run at that stage of the game.
 
Including the playoffs, this is only the ninth loss of Matt LaFleur's career, but giving up on the run seems to be one of the common themes in those games. Is this because of LaFleur's play-calling? Or is Aaron Rodgers getting a little too pass-happy? Whether it was play-calling or on-the-field decision-making, both had some questionable moments on Sunday.

4.8

Aaron Rodgers finished the game completing 15 of his 28 passes for  133 yards and averaging a lowly 4.8 yards per attempt. In my Cheesehead TV prediction, I thought that this could turn into a big day for the Green Bay passing game as they went up against a depleted Saints cornerback room. However, that wasn't the case at all.
 
We will see what the All-22 brings, but on the TV copy, there appeared to be little separation. Also, it appeared that Rodgers was trying to force the ball downfield a little too much and, at times, was holding on to the ball, passing on the easy completion. The end result was a disjointed passing game.

35

The final score was 38-3, resulting in a 35 points loss, which is the most by this Packers team during the Aaron Rodgers' era in Green Bay. On top of that, the three points they scored were the fewest in a game where Rodgers didn't exit due to an injury.

59

There really aren't many positives to take away from this performance--watch the film, be critical, learn from it, and then burn it. But if you're looking for something, punter Corey Bojorquez was as advertised.
 
He punted four times, totaling 176 yards, and this included a huge 59-yarder. He also had a nice directional punt that went out of bounds and pinned New Orleans inside the 20 once.

2, 10, and 3.3

This Green Bay Packers offensive line that featured two rookies making their NFL debuts and Elgton Jenkins at left tackle were faced with a difficult Week 1 task going up against this New Orleans defensive front. Overall, I wouldn't say it was a bad performance from the offensive line, but it wasn't what we saw from this unit in 2020, which should have been expected to some degree given the changes--although Josh Myers and Elgton Jenkins appeared to have held up very well.
 
The Saints defense recorded two sacks and 10 pressures, according to PFF; however, in the offensive line's defense, Rodgers did hold on to the ball a bit at times which didn't help things. The Green Bay running backs also averaged only 3.3 yards per carry, with Jones averaing 1.8 yards and Kylin Hill 2.8. This group will have to be better moving forward.
 

---------------------

Born and raised in Green Bay, WI and I still call it home. After my family, watching the Packers, sharing my opinions on the team through my writing and interacting with other fans is my greatest passion. You can find me on Twitter at @Paul_Bretl. 
 

2 points

Comments (47)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
PhantomII's picture

September 13, 2021 at 11:24 am

The team looks spliced together, never functioning as a whole. This is the play you get from no preseason game action together at all.
I think this is the perfect example of what not to do in a preseason.....Are there any questions? ML, AR, Gute? So obviously the 2nd and 3rd preseason game should see a starting team playing in sync before the season starts, before rotating rookies in.

5 points
6
1
ricky's picture

September 13, 2021 at 11:50 am

The game plan was bad; the OL and DL were bad; Rodgers looked frustrated and impatient. King was again shown to be unable to cover a fast receiver who got behind him; it's always been his biggest flaw, and unfortunately, it seems that it can't really be fixed. He doesn't have the speed to keep up or make up yardage. All in all, a pathetic performance. The defense, as we were warned, looked like the heat really affected them. This didn't happen to the Saints because they were effective when on the field; the Packers defenders weren't, so they spent most of the game on the field. This reminded me way too much of the regular season game against Tampa Bay last season. And that doesn't bode well for their chances at going to the SB.

7 points
7
0
SwedeBayPacker's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:00 pm

"And that doesn't bode well for their chances at going to the SB."

I know it's just the first game of the season, but that ship has clearly sailed. We're back to having the worst D in the league, and now the O wants to tag along.

Someone, quick: tell me again what a great idea it was to fire Pettine in favor of one of the (proven) worst DCs in the NFL.

0 points
5
5
murf7777's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:23 pm

So one bad defensive game with a new defense being installed and were the worst D in the NFL, that might be a bit too dramatic. The Packers have some very good, pro-bowl type of defensive players, give it some time, everything will be alright.

-1 points
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SwedeBayPacker's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:43 pm

Over the past 50 years, none of the Packers’ 13 first-year defensive coordinators had allowed 38 points and only one other – Jim Bates in 2005 – had failed to force one turnover in their debut game. The 171 yards rushing the Saints compiled was the second most behind the 177 Minnesota ran for in Ray Rhodes’ debut in ’92 (a game in which his defense forced three turnovers in a 23-20 overtime loss).

Dom Capers’ unit in ’09 allowed more yards (352), but it forced five turnovers and allowed the Chicago Bears to convert just four of 15 third downs.

Pettine’s debut, which came the year after Capers was let go, consisted of 294 total yards allowed, no passing touchdowns and a forced fumble in a 24-23 victory over the Bears.

So yeah: FUCK BARRY. He needs to be axed.

3 points
5
2
LambeauPlain's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:02 pm

King has now put enough on tape to be picked on whenever he is on the field. He has 4.4 straight line speed but he is not at all "quick". In fact, he looks clumsy and uncoordinated in recovery.

I have to admit, he is the weakest link in the D backfield.

And Joe Barry is the weak link for the entire D. I hope Matt does not stubbornly stay with his crony acquaintance the way MM stuck with his, Dom Capers. If the D plays another clueless, soft, confused D next Monday...Matt needs to step in and "help" Barry the way MM did in to help Dom several years ago and even moved CMIII to ILB when he had his last best year in GB and D played better with MM involved. Then the next year, MM went back to being a full time OC.

2 points
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murf7777's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:16 pm

King has 4.3 speed which puts him in the 73 percentile of CB’s. Don’t see it as speed, maybe recognition of the route being run is more accurate. If WR gets a few steps past you with similar speed you aren’t going to make up the difference. Instincts become more important than speed.

4 points
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jannes bjornson's picture

September 14, 2021 at 05:04 am

True, he is clueless. 6M worth.

0 points
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LambeauPlain's picture

September 13, 2021 at 11:54 am

1

The total tackles each by Z Smith, King, Savage.

7 points
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NitschkeFromTheGrave's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:15 pm

5

5 TDs without even being touched by the D line or linebackers.

Where was ANY pursuit except when A.R. threw his INTs ? The second was such a duck, I got out of my chair thinking even I had a chance at it.

Growing tired of pounding my fist about lack of D. If chairs bruised I'd be arrested for domestic furniture abuse.

At this point I just want a REFUND on this entire team.

10 points
11
1
Lphill's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:21 pm

Kevin King is God awful

1 points
5
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13TimeChamps's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:48 pm

Anyone want to predict the over/under how many times he's going to repeat this throughout the week?

1 points
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croatpackfan's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:26 pm

14?

1 points
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1
Alberta_Packer's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:22 pm

As bad as these numbers are - the ones on the back of the jerseys were even worse.

2 points
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0
mnbadger's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:26 pm

I gave a thumbs up to Paul's reporting. Thank you for taking the appearance and stench away and replacing it with the statistics. The stats were ugly, but somehow less ugly than the game itself. Our zen-master qb got outplayed by a castaway. Coaching? Attitude? Effort? Etiher way, the qb/gm better own up to his terrible performance and either lead this team together or get out of the way so somebody, anybody else can at least try. GPG!

7 points
8
1
packer132's picture

September 15, 2021 at 09:34 pm

I agree, though Rodgers is never going to apologize as his ego is too big. He said the whole team played bad, including him. I fault LaFleur for not preparing the the team and not adjusting during the game (again). Saints had 7 DB's yet Matt would not run the ball. I don't know why Packers DB's were playing soft coverage again. Probably the worst game I've watched in 30 years.

4 points
5
1
Swisch's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:35 pm

It may be that Jameis Winston was humbled a couple of years ago with the Bucs, took an apprenticeship under Drew Brees last season, and has dedicated himself to playing quarterback for the Saints with a new approach of taking what the defense gives him rather than forcing the ball downfield.
If I remember correctly from the game graphic yesterday, Winston had 33 touchdown passes in his last year with the Bucs, but a whopping 30 interceptions. Yesterday he had 5 touchdown passes with no interceptions.
In contrast, Aaron Rodgers may be dividing and disintegrating the Packers by delusions of grandeur. It may be that our general manager and head coach are continually asking themselves before making any move, "What's Aaron going to think? Will he make a sly remark of disapproval, or even instigate a resistance movement within the team?"
It may be that Rodgers as a cause of dissent and distraction is dragging down the morale and focus of the entire Packers organization.
It seems we were told as fans that everything in training camp was going along wonderfully with the Packers in preparing themselves for a great season. Now one wonders if that was just a false front to hide faults and fractures behind the scenes.
If Rodgers has truly been an exemplary player for the Packers since his return from holdout, perhaps game one of the regular season was just an abnormality in what will still be an excellent season.
However, if Rodgers is actually a disturbance to coaching and personnel decisions, and acting the discontented diva, then he needs to be traded if at all possible.
I'd take a first-round pick and a good defensive player to rid ourselves of him if he is overreaching in his influence and undermining with his attitude.
It's better to cut out a cancer right away.

1 points
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13TimeChamps's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:54 pm

Are you also ready to take the dead money hit to the salary cap if he's traded before next year?

0 points
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2
croatpackfan's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:29 pm

What is with that trade deadline during the season?

0 points
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1
PearlyBakerBest's picture

September 13, 2021 at 02:05 pm

Would also save 19 mil if I’m not mistaken.

1 points
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dobber's picture

September 13, 2021 at 02:44 pm

My understanding is that #12 has a ~$27M cap hit this year and would incur an accelerated cap hit of $54M if released or traded this league year. Since it's after June 1, the Packers could carry half of that $54M over into 2022, so a trade or release at this point would be essentially cap neutral in 2021, but would save the Packers about $20M against the cap in 2022 (as a trade or release this off-season would do, also).

2 points
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PearlyBakerBest's picture

September 13, 2021 at 06:47 pm

Thank you for clarifying. I was indeed speaking to the cap savings for next year.

3 points
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13TimeChamps's picture

September 13, 2021 at 04:31 pm

dobber....I will defer to you on the cap ramifications, as I don't even pretend to be a capologist. Ever since the "beautiful mystery" nonsense reared it's ugly head, and rumors started that AR12 might be traded, all I've read on this site and others is that trading him before 2022 would have serious dead money hits to the cap and it wouldn't make sense to do it before then. Thanks for that info.

2 points
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PearlyBakerBest's picture

September 13, 2021 at 06:48 pm

So 13. Now knowing that trading Rodgers from this point on would save 19 million on the cap in ‘22, would you trade him for a first and quality defender as Swisch suggested? That’s nearly half of what they need to get to and would greatly minimize the pain of the upcoming years.

1 points
2
1
dobber's picture

September 14, 2021 at 09:30 am

Certainly not trying to show anyone up with my comment. Just hoping to help clarify.

The question this off-season on #12 will be "how many high-end vets are going to be available?" If Watson, Wilson, and ARod are all being shopped, that's going to likely drive down compensation or slow down the market. I'd like to think that ARod could bring at least what Stafford brought (2 1's, a 3, and an established vet). If he gets back to 2020 form, he should bring more--but if he looks like he did against the Saints all season long, who knows?

Removing ARod ($20M), Z ($15.7M), and P. Smith ($12.5M), gets the Packers almost to breakeven in 2022. If his back isn't a chronic thing, I think they'll renegotiate Z to get similar savings and keep him around until they've beefed up the OLB position. It's my hope that P plays well and they can find a trade partner for him.

2 points
2
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Packers1985's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:03 pm

First round except for Jaire whom did we pick that have been playing like a first round talent...
Where as in other top teams the round 1's have been performing or atleast having impactful year from the day 1.

2 points
3
1
PearlyBakerBest's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:28 pm

As you stated in a post from an earlier article, Rodgers looks to be considerably lighter than he was last year. It is painfully obvious he did not put in the work it takes to become the league MVP during the offseason. That can only mean this season is going nowhere IMO. As Vic would say, help is not on the way.

2 points
3
1
croatpackfan's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:33 pm

As Vic also suggested that Packers shoudl trade AR as soon as possible because he may cause MLF lose locker room. And I respect very much Vic's experience!

-1 points
2
3
baldski's picture

September 13, 2021 at 04:49 pm

In these situations, I always think about "what would Ron Wolfe do?". Rodgers would be gone a long time ago.

3 points
4
1
TarynsEyes's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:47 pm

All of the numbers tell the truth behind the arse-kicking that this team deservingly received on Sunday but let us not use one to tell a lie and that is the passer rating for Love.

Garbage time stats should never be used to rate a player's performance as a sign of what's to come from the point of good when the opponent is nearly handing plays to you to simply end the game. I say this NOT to denigrate Love, but to keep the falsely acquired boast to a meek peep for his sake and the fans' blind-optimism that will rise like over-yeasted dough or the over-blown bubble gum bubble that pops all over your face.

R.E.L.A.X. Just don't Zen out like Rodgers and Company on Sunday. Wait until at least week 5 as either Rodgers has returned from his meditation vacation or we can all join him in his farewell to GB and fans.

6 points
8
2
Thegravedigger's picture

September 13, 2021 at 02:18 pm

yup. the zen shit is great when you are winning. but when your playing like shit, whos going to be the leader and snap the team the fuck out of it? and the worst part is aaron downplaying it in the press conference. Lafleur said the team was "badly embarassed." rodgers comes out and says "those are his words" and says its" just one game, we played bad, i played bad." no big deal. own your shit bro, this loss was embarrasing. it was worse than bad, it was your worst game ever. so own it, and move on. the saints came prepared and played for their city, what are the packers playing for?

1 points
2
1
Packers1985's picture

September 13, 2021 at 12:59 pm

Too many top draft picks have been spent from day 1 on the defensive side of the ball. Still the defense is the same secondary that still struggles and dline that leaves the size of holes that a truck can fit into.

6 points
6
0
LambeauPlain's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:02 pm

I often record the game then at times review it. Due to concerns of nausea, yesterday's game will earn the delete button.

Rodgers looked like the Rodgers of 2018. Holding the ball for the chunk play....the whole game. Was Matt on board with this? Or was Rodgers changing run to pass plays pre snap? Neither the O or the D adjusted their failing game plans.

Why not adjust and use the run and quick passes? Force the Saints to crowd the box. Instead they played 2 deep safeties the entire game...because the Packers let them.

4 points
4
0
Packers1985's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:08 pm

Even our running group wasn't doing that well against their stout dline. Except dillion no other Rb's looked good

1 points
1
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TarynsEyes's picture

September 13, 2021 at 01:24 pm

These types of games are the ones you make sure to keep as they are the ones where most learning is acquired. It brings players and fans back to Earth when they've been circling the planet in outer space and thinking how great they are and will remain, though they haven't actually won what counts in over a decade.

0 points
2
2
t-wrecks's picture

September 13, 2021 at 02:33 pm

Love how everyone was saying “it’s preseason and the defense is all bottom roster guys”

We’ll…uhh…nothing changed with the starters in…

7 points
7
0
Bure9620's picture

September 13, 2021 at 02:54 pm

I will likely get many down votes but if we continue to see 5 wide early this season and continued offensive ineptitude we have to put more blame on Rodgers shoulders than usual. This is a 12 personnel base offense not a spread offense that runs the ball 6 times per game. That's why McCarthy was fired. I have to believe there were runs that Player/GM checked out of. If not...and This was Lefleur's gameplan?? Then its on him. Rodgers mentioned post game "you have to be able to run the ball against a 2 high shell" well yes this is true but they only ran it 6 times....There is a difference between not being able to run the ball vs not even trying to run the ball. I am getting really tired of Rodgers BS here as he clearly checked out of runs.

If this continues with more ineptitude Rodgers is just hurting this team more than helping and the Love era cannot begin soon enough.

9 points
9
0
Packers1985's picture

September 13, 2021 at 03:03 pm

The answer is that our running game isn't that good either yesterday. Except for couple of runs from dillon no one else looked that strong. Most of the game their dline was winning the Line of scrimmage.

3 points
3
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Bure9620's picture

September 13, 2021 at 03:24 pm

Dillon only received 4 carries and averaged nearly 5 yards per carry. The run was abandoned.

3 points
3
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Packers1985's picture

September 13, 2021 at 02:59 pm

This Patchwork Oline is going to cause us some problems against some good defenses. Somebody has to sit with Arod and talk his accuracy last game whether it's the wr's and him not being in the sync or him being inaccurate because of missing some off season practice. Aaron Jones is not the answer against stout dlines and good linebackers.
The Defense looked all over the place yesterday dline getting pushed around easily and not much pass rush and the secondary seems to be clueless.

This makes me wonder where is the talent that we were raving about before the start of the season... Apart from Jenkins and Jaire who else have been consistent in the last 2-3 years from our draft picks.

6 points
6
0
LayingTheLawe's picture

September 13, 2021 at 03:54 pm

My mom has been doing a lot of mall walking since the cancer went into remission and I think she can get behind Kevin King on the deep post.

But seriously folks, I mean at this point you have to just hope that pressure is going to disrupt the attempt or that the QB outright misses the deep shot that will surely come against this guy at least once in the game. The LOLions have no receivers at all so it would seem to make sense to man up outside and put as many defenders as possible inside to try and keep all those throws to the backs and tight ends short of first downs. But can they really trust King to do this?

3 points
3
0
Grandfathered's picture

September 13, 2021 at 10:14 pm

I think King can still regain confidence and get back to his better form. All CBs get burned, and King needs confidence. He needs to use his length again and play press more.

-2 points
0
2
jhtobias's picture

September 13, 2021 at 04:04 pm

Preseason is a garbage excuse. Many teams didnt play starters and rolled.

True they have spent numerous high round picks on defensive backs but what has this team done in the last three years to help the dline and inside linebacks ..

Cry all you want about barry , but you cant make a 250 dollar meal from ingrediants from the 99 cent store .

2 points
2
0
Packers1985's picture

September 13, 2021 at 05:00 pm

But but many of our follow members says otherwise that they have put a championship team together. For me last two years were because all our players over achieved but again when ever we met a good team we folded on three phase which clearly explains it.

2 points
2
0
stockholder's picture

September 13, 2021 at 05:27 pm

Savage is a bust. 1 assist. It's time to move Savage. He's not an open field safety. Amos does all the the tackling. Sullivan 1 tackle. The ball continues to go right at Sullivan.

3 points
4
1
Packers0808's picture

September 13, 2021 at 05:34 pm

Rodgers new Jesus Christ look didn't do him much good! Rodgers has to forget trying to be 20 something like his new romance partner! The Packers were Godawful!

2 points
3
1
veteranviewer's picture

September 13, 2021 at 11:29 pm

Joe Barry the Dairy Fairy.

-4 points
0
4