Take it from a long-time Cleveland Browns fan, it’s difficult and inadvisable to take preseason victories too seriously. There is, however, nothing wrong with being excited (in general) for the start of a new NFL season, and Packers fans definitely had the covered at the Packers’ first preseason game on Thursday.
A roving polka band strolled through the parking lots between barbeques and impromptu mini-pubs serving shots off of a ski, as Packers fans revved up for the return from their long spring and summer hiatus. Live classic rock cover bands, the Packers’ drumline, and a group of guys that appeared to be a German television crew all added to the festive atmosphere of one of the jolliest tailgating sessions I’ve ever witnessed.
The mood of the observers and the participants hadn’t changed much by the end of the game, after the Packers satisfied their faithful with a solid, victorious showing.
It’s true that the stars like Rodgers, Matthews, Cobb, and Graham didn’t even dress for the game. Neither did most members of some entire starting units like the offensive line, the defensive backfield, and the linebacking corps. Regardless, those in attendance were finally treated to a full-speed effort by the meat of the depth chart, the rookies, and those still jockeying for position.
Brett Hundley and Deshone Kizer continued their battle for the #2 QB position behind Rodgers, and you’ll get a different opinion on this from me than what I’ve seen so far from others. It was close, but I thought Kizer looked more promising.
Hundley did come away with one passing TD, a slightly higher completion percentage, and a slightly higher QB Rating. Hundley also threw an interception and gave up a fumble, though, while Kizer didn’t turn the ball over at all. Kizer gained more yards on the same number of completions and rushed for two first downs in third down situations. Both quarterbacks threw well off-target more than once, though, and Kizer had a concerning amount of trouble…