Green Bay Packers: Give Jordan Love Time

ASHWAUBENON, WISCONSIN - AUGUST 19: Jordan Love #10 of the Green Bay Packers throws a pass during Green Bay Packers Training Camp at Ray Nitschke Field on August 19, 2020 in Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
ASHWAUBENON, WISCONSIN - AUGUST 19: Jordan Love #10 of the Green Bay Packers throws a pass during Green Bay Packers Training Camp at Ray Nitschke Field on August 19, 2020 in Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

It’s been a very odd offseason, and the Green Bay Packers don’t need Jordan Love to start at quarterback tomorrow. So give him some time.

Without being able to attend training camp practices or watch the Green Bay Packers play a preseason game, it’s certainly more challenging this year than in years past to get an idea of who is performing well and who isn’t.

Luckily, the Packers’ beat reporters are tweeting like crazy during practice and providing follow-ups afterward of what they’ve seen. We’ve learned a number of things through the first nine practices, including Aaron Rodgers has looked very good as of late, rookie linebacker Kamal Martin could see some serious playing time this year, and that Lane Taylor has been excellent at right guard.

On the flip side, and what is going to grab a ton of attention is we’ve also learned that Jordan Love still has a long way to go.

Coming out of Utah State, it was easy to see the talent that Love possesses. He has good size, he’s athletic, and has an NFL caliber arm that can make any throw. However, it was also evident that his skill-set was raw, and his decision making also needs improvement as well.

Through the first few weeks of practice, the transition to the NFL has proven difficult for Love. Matt LaFleur has said that Love is playing “tentative” and Matt Schneidman of The Athletic, who has attended each practice, had this to say in his recent article:

"“Love has yet to even provide a glimpse at why the Packers traded up to draft him in the first round. Nobody expected him to take the world by storm in his first nine practices, but every throw seems like a touch pass and he’s had some accuracy issues early on.”"

Now, I’m not going to dispute what Matt said, he’s been at practice, I haven’t, and I imagine that Love is taking his lumps. But I will say that the issues surrounding Love’s first nine practices should have been expected to some degree.

He’s had to make the transition to NFL quarterback in what has been an extremely difficult offseason. There were no OTAs, no mini-camps, and there are no preseason games either. Not to mention that his overall time with coaches and in the film room has been cut short as well.

So no wonder he’s looked hesitant, he’s still unsure about what he’s seeing. I mean, it has only been NINE practices. Do we remember what Aaron Rodgers looked like early in his career? He was a far cry from the player that we see today.

In drafting Love, the Green Bay Packers weren’t expecting him to start this year, they do still have Rodgers after all, and in fact, barring something wild taking place next offseason, he isn’t going to be expected to start in 2021 either.

The draft is about projecting who a player will become, not who the player is when they are selected. And when it comes to Jordan Love, as I mentioned above, it’s easy to see the potential.

Hey, who knows, maybe the Love pick doesn’t pan out, and the Packers look foolish for trading up for him after finishing just one game shy of the Super Bowl. But maybe he becomes Green Bay’s franchise quarterback for15 years following Rodgers.

The point is, we just don’t know right now. Yet what I do know is that it’s been an unusual offseason with far less on the field time than what there normally is and that Love doesn’t have to be the Green Bay Packers’ starting quarterback right now.

During an interview with reporters on Wednesday, Packers’ offensive coordinator Nathanial Hackett summed up well what Love has gone through (via Packers Wire):

"“You look at Jordan, obviously this is an unbelievably unique experience,” Hackett said. “To not have an offseason, besides a Zoom call, not have practice, not be around your teammates. And then be thrown into an NFL system versus a defense like Coach Pettine’s. It’s a challenge.”"

Next. Lane Taylor is Dominating Training Camp. dark

In a perfect world, do we want Love to step on the field and look fantastic with every snap he takes? Of course, we do. However, we all knew he needed time, and, fortunately, he has that time to develop. We see far too often NFL teams throwing a rookie quarterback into the fire when he isn’t ready and rarely does that pan out for either party.

So when it comes to Love’s performances in practice, let’s all take a deep breath.