The Green Bay Packers have looked fantastic over the last month. They’ve won three straight following a loss to a stout Pittsburgh defense, and they have looked great doing it.
Now, coming off a win against the reigning world champion Kansas City Chiefs to get back to .500, there is a great deal of confidence in this team.
That confidence can improve a player’s or team’s overall performance, but too much can hinder it as well. This brings up the possibility of Monday night’s game against the New York Giants being a trap game for Green Bay.
The Giants are currently 4-8, and have Tommy DeVito, their third-string quarterback, as their current starter. They have won their last two games with him under center, against the Washington Commanders and the New England Patriots. Granted, those teams are two of the worst in the league. But still, with the G-Men coming off of two straight wins, their confidence will be a bit up as well.
Yes, both teams will enter this game with confidence, but they also come to the field understanding who they have played in the past. The Giants know that they have not beaten anyone that good, and they know that playing the Packers will be a test. The Packers know that they have beaten two of the best teams in the NFL in the past couple weeks, and that the Giants are one of the weak teams in the league.
The point is, the Giants might go into this game with more motivation than the Packers. Because of how special last week’s win was for Jordan Love and the team, this could be a potential hangover performance for Green Bay.
Two weeks ago, New York went into Washington and executed their offense. DeVito threw three touchdown passes, and the Giants’ defense hauled in an interception they returned for a touchdown to ice the game, 31-19.
Their latest game was a 10-7 victory over the New England Patriots, one of the worst teams in the entire league, despite their recently edging out a victory against the Mitchell Trubisky-led Pittsburgh Steelers. The Giants only had 220 total yards of offense, but their defense forced three turnovers.
They do have dangerous playmakers on offense. Obviously Saquon Barkley is a force to be reckoned with, especially against one of the weaker run defenses in the league. But Jalin Hyatt is also a potential threat. Hyatt was a massive playmaker last year at the University of Tennessee, and he also had about half of the Giants total yards against the Patriots with 109 receiving yards.
Following a battle against Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce, and the rest of that Kansas City juggernaut, this New York offense should not be a challenge. But with Jordan Love coming off a near-perfect game against the champs, he could lay an egg in New York if his confidence is too high.
Remember, after two impressive performances against the Chicago Bears and the Atlanta Falcons, Love struggled for a few games after that.
The Giants’ defense is a solid overall unit, but nothing too special. They held the Buffalo Bills to 14 points in the middle of October. But they also have given up a lot of points to mediocre teams. They ceded 28 points against Arizona and 30 to the Raiders, neither of those teams have good offenses.
If the Packers avoid the trap and win this game, as they should, it puts them above .500 and also in the thick of the playoff hunt. But the Giants, despite not having much to play for, have become frisky of late, and this Packers’ squads’ collective lack of experience puts them in greater dangers of inconsistency and coming up short in key moments. Make no mistake, this is a sneaky-huge game on Monday, one Green Bay can’t afford to lose lest they regress to the team they looked like earlier in the season.