By DAN ZIELINSKI
A new era begins for the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. After the highly publicized offseason trade of Aaron Rodgers to the New York Jets, the Packers will turn to Jordan Love at quarterback.
Sunday’s matchup between the Packers and Chicago Bears in Chicago will mark the first time in years there hasn’t been a clear-cut favorite between these two rivals. Both teams are young and feature modest expectations. They also have young and promising QBs.
Bears QB Justin Fields was electric last season with his ability to scramble and make plays out of nothing. He boasts a strong arm but lacked consistency, confidence and accuracy at times last year.
Fields enters his third season in the NFL and the second year in the Bears’ current offensive system. The Bears established an offensive identity last year and made several offseason moves to enhance their offense. They added multiple offensive linemen and skill position players, notably No. 1 receiver DJ Moore.
On the other side, the Packers are the youngest team in the NFL. The season’s biggest storyline will be Love’s performance replacing Rodgers. The Packers will likely lean on their two-headed rushing attack in Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon. Love also has young receivers around him, including Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs.
Love is ready to take control of the offense and has the skill set to thrive. He is athletic and has a strong and accurate arm. On Sunday, he will possibly be without his top two receivers: Watson is officially out and Doubs is listed as questionable. Both players are dealing with hamstring injuries.
Sunday’s contest between these two archrivals is a toss-up. The Bears feature more continuity and experience. The Packers have something to prove and feature plenty of potential. It’s hard to say who will win this one, but I’m leaning towards the Bears.
Prediction: Bears 23, Packers 20