Jordan Love and the Green Bay Packers hope for better results in their second straight prime-time matchup when they visit the Las Vegas Raiders on Monday night.
Green Bay (2-2) is coming off a 34-20 loss to the Detroit Lions in front of a national audience on Thursday, Sept. 28. The Packers fell behind 27-3 before halftime and never recovered in what proved to be their most lopsided loss of the season.
Love completed 23 of 36 passes for 246 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. He said the Packers’ slow start proved costly, and it is something the team will look to fix in Week 5.
“I think just offensively as a whole, we’ve just got to start faster,” said Love, who has thrown for 901 yards, eight touchdowns and three interceptions in his first four starts. “We don’t start fast and we kind of get behind and it’s hard running the ball.”
It’s a pattern that also has plagued Las Vegas (1-3), which will try to snap a three-game losing streak as it returns home. The Raiders lost 24-17 on the road against the Los Angeles Chargers a week ago.
Raiders rookie quarterback Aidan O’Connell made his debut Sunday against the Chargers, and he could make his second start in a row if veteran Jimmy Garoppolo remains in the concussion protocol. Garoppolo was sidelined as this week’s practices got underway and was limited Thursday.
“We’re waiting to see,” Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels said. “We’re still under the same conversation we were last week until he clears. So he would have to clear first and then we could talk about that.”
O’Connell, the Raiders’ fourth-round pick out of Purdue, will try to build upon a first start in which he completed 24 of 39 passes for 238 yards and a pick. He was sacked seven times.
An efficient ground game could help Las Vegas, but so far that has proved to be a challenge. Raiders running back Josh Jacobs is averaging 2.7 yards a carry through four games.
The Raiders’ top receiver is no stranger to the Packers or their fans. Davante Adams, who has hauled in 33 passes for 397 yards and three touchdowns this season, spent his first eight seasons with Green Bay before joining Las Vegas in 2022.
Adams seems to thrive in the national spotlight. He has notched at least 100 receiving yards in each of his past four games on Monday nights, and he could become the first player in league history to do so five times in a row, according to NFL Communications.
Green Bay linebacker Rashan Gary will try to add to his team-high 3 1/2 sacks. Fellow linebacker Quay Walker, who enters the contest with a team-leading 47 tackles, will focus largely on limiting the Raiders in the running game.
The Packers’ offense could return to better health this week. Running back Aaron Jones and wideout Christian Watson both returned from injuries last week but were limited in snaps.
This week, both could play a bigger role.
“We have some of the best training staff in the world and they take great care of us and keep our best interest in mind,” Jones said. “Now, I feel like I’ll be able to go out there against Vegas on Monday night and be 100 percent.”