Key matchups for week one of the NFL season for the New Orleans Saints
Packers Offensive Line vs Saints Pass Rush
The Green Bay Packers find themselves thin at offensive line to start the season. David Bakhtiari is still recovering from an injury and has been placed on the PUP list. The interior of the offensive line will start two inexperienced players in Royce Newman at right guard and Josh Myers at center. Both of these players are rookies having to face an experienced and healthy Saints defensive pass rush.
This New Orleans Saints pass rush is ready to make a difference against Aaron Rodgers. Marcus Davenport is on the last year of his rookie deal and starts his campaign for an extension against a weak Packers line. Cameron Jordan will be the stalwart as always. Also, look for any of the new Saints linebackers to lineup over the line as well. The Saints will likely implore exotic looks and various rushers to try and overwhelm an inexperienced Packers unit.
Jaire Alexander vs Marquez Callaway
This will be the first test for Marquez Callaway being the top Saints receiver. It could very well be one of this hardest tests of the entire year. Callaway has always had other receivers on the field to help take away cornerbacks. That will not be the case in week one. Callaway has to carry the Saints receiving corp for the foreseeable future. Michael Thomas is on the PUP list and Tre’Quan Smith just cannot stay healthy. This leads to Callaway having to face one of the leagues best corners in Jaire Alexander.
Jaire Alexander is coming off his best season in the league. Alexander debuted on the NFL Top 100 this year. He was named to his first Pro-Bowl last season and was named to the second team All-Pro team. Alexander will be an incredibly difficult test for Callaway. Sean Payton will likely scheme ways to get all pass catchers open but Alexander is turning into a lockdown type corner for the Packers. Following this matchup could dictate how successful the Saints offense is in week one.
Davante Adams vs Marshon Lattimore
Two of the league’s very best go against each other in week one. Davante Adams is coming off one of the best seasons of his career. Adams had 18 touchdowns and almost 1,400 yards in the 2020 season. He will be looking to prove that this play was not a fluke in a contract year. This could very well be Adams’ last year with Aaron Rodgers as well. Adams is playing for himself, his future, and his friend this year. That does not bode well for the Saints corners.
Meanwhile, Marshon Lattimore is coming off, what most perceive, as a down year for the Saints. Lattimore was named to the Pro-Bowl in 2019 but not in 2020. Lattimore also had the least amount of passes defended in 2020 than in any other year of his career. Lattimore is more than capable of being a lockdown corner, but the Saints needs 2018/2019 Lattimore back. Even at his best though, Lattimore might not be good enough to slow down Davante Adams. This will be a heavyweight fight each play for these two.
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