Packers vs. Saints: 5 things to watch in preseason Week 2

·3 min read

After a pair of joint practices this week, the Green Bay Packers will host the New Orleans Saints in the second of three preseason games on Friday night at Lambeau Field.

Here are five things to watch:

Another shot at Love

Backup quarterback Jordan Love was the star of Wednesday’s joint practice. Can he carry over that momentum into a preseason game on Friday night? He’ll be expected to start again, marking the first time he’s ever played in back-to-back games. The Packers want him to start fast, make good decisions and lead the offense to points. Maybe his supporting cast will be better around him after an avalanche of mistakes put a damper on the preseason opener. As always, grade Love on accuracy and decision-making.

Interior defensive line

First-round pick Devonte Wyatt should make his preseason debut, giving the Packers’ already loaded defensive front another weapon. In the preseason opener, TJ Slaton, Jack Heflin, Chris Slayton and Jonathan Ford all produced disruptive snaps up front. This group was dominant during joint practices with the Saints, too. Don’t be surprised if the Saints have a tough time at the line of scrimmage on Friday night.

Stack success at WR

After a tough day of practice on Tuesday that prompted a meeting of the minds between the quarterbacks and wide receivers, young pass-catchers such as Amari Rodgers, Samori Toure and Romeo Doubs bounced back with a strong performance to finish the joint practices on Wednesday. In San Francisco, the receivers made too many simple mistakes. But training camp is all about making mistakes, learning, and not repeating. Friday night at Lambeau Field is another opportunity to stack success, show consistency and prove to Love and Aaron Rodgers that they can be trusted in a game setting.

Special teams standouts

Roster spots will be won and lost on special teams, especially among the roster battles for depth roles on defense. Keep a close eye on who is operating on the kick and punt coverage units earlier in the contest on Friday, and who can make the one good block or one strong tackle for Rich Bisaccia’s group. Cornerback Kiondre Thomas (No. 43) is one name to watch. He had two tackles and was excellent as a blocker in the preseason opener. One other player to watch: long snapper Jack Coco. He’s still competing to win the job in Green Bay.

Right side of the offensive line

In particular, Royce Newman, Jake Hanson and Zach Tom. Elgton Jenkins’ return looms large, but the Packers still need to figure out a plan on the right side just in case Jenkins isn’t ready for Week 1. Will it be Hanson at right guard and Newman at right tackle? Or Newman at right guard and Tom at right tackle? These preseason snaps are huge in terms of finding the best five to put on the field to open the regular season. Tom’s performance at guard or tackle could solve the problem.

Related

Barry: Packers CB Rasul Douglas doing a 'phenomenal' job in the slot

Bisaccia: 'Big game' coming up for Packers long snapper Jack Coco

Packers think Jake Hanson can be the new Lucas Patrick for offensive line

Packers vs. Saints: How to watch, listen, stream preseason game

Packers GM: QB Jordan Love 'trending in the right direction' in Year 3

Important things to know from Packers' joint practices with Saints

Story originally appeared on Packers Wire