Packers can't get conservative with Jordan Love under center and expect to thrive
The Green Bay Packers can’t be afraid to let Jordan Love cook. Not because they expect him to recreate the majestic magic of Aaron F’ing Rodgers, but because something close to the opposite is true: Love likely won’t be brilliant from the get-go, even if he can eventually get there.
Too many teams treat inexperienced quarterbacks like dink-and-dunk artists. Avoid throwing into traffic, check it down, and live to fight another day. But the reality is, those quarterbacks, by definition of their inexperience, are not likely to succeed this way, even in a two-high safety world. What more and more teams have come to understand is the best way to manufacture success for young quarterbacks is to introduce variance, pushing the ball down the field and maximizing chances to score when they arise.
In the Matt LaFleur era, the Packers have been terrific at pushing their advantage on fourth downs. According to Ben Baldwin’s model, no team made better decisions more often on fourth down than the Packers in 2022. The below model shows decisions made that affected the game with a win probability over 1%. If we toggle down to even 0.5% WP change, Green Bay’s lead actually grows.
That can’t change with Love. If anything, they have to be more aggressive rather than less because they’re going to get fewer scoring chances, in all likelihood, with Love than prime Rodgers. They have to be willing to maximize those opportunities.