KANSAS CITY MO. KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Jordan Love began slowly and struggled against the blitz. He managed only one touchdown in his first Green Bay Packers start as starting quarterback. Coach Matt LaFleur was responsible for Sunday's 13-7 defeat to the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium.
Aaron Rodgers was at home due to his positive COVID-19 testing on Wednesday. The Chiefs threw a variety of blitzes at Packers' first-time starter, most of which were on third and fourth downs. They worked to a T.
LaFleur stated, "This one falls upon me squarely." "Certainly, to be 2-for-12 at third down, clearly we didn't have a plan for some of their zero pressures.
"But I thought our men fought. Jordan was a great player. He was patient, taking hits and delivering his ball. He did a great job. However, I believe that I have to do a better job and this is my responsibility."
LaFleur had been in danger of losing the Packers for the first time. Love, however, put together a scoring drive and hit Allen Lazard for an interception at 20 yards with just 4 minutes 54 seconds left. After that, he never received the ball.
Love replied, "Obviously not good enough" when asked about his performance. "I think that we started off a little slow. I started off slow, too. We got into a more rhythm after that. It was obviously too late. It was just not enough."
He finished his career with 19-of-34 passing yards for 190 yards, and a touchdown with an intercept. Although he was only sacked once, the Chiefs kept him running to avoid many more. According to ESPN Stats & Information, five Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo sent pass-rushers on at least 51% of Love’s dropbacks. This is the highest rate of any Packers quarterback since Week 15.
Love completed only 6 of 17 passes for 30 yard against the blitz. Twenty of those were on the touchdown pass. He was blitzed 69% of his fourth- and third-down dropbacks. After Love, seven Chiefs defenders were sent to him more than once.
Love stated that although we began to have a better answer at the end, "They were bringing their all-out, eating us up, and we just couldn't execute on the plays we had against them." It took only one play against it to make it happen, otherwise it wouldn't have been happening as often. We weren't able execute it so they kept coming back with it."
Love tried, but was not able to find a rhythm with Davante Adams wide receiver. Adams was targeted 14 times and had only six catches for 42 yard. Adams' sideline route in the fourth quarter was Love's intercept.
Love stated that it takes time to develop that chemistry. It's obvious that Aaron and Love know each other well. They've been together for quite some time. Although the chemistry was not yet there, I believe it will improve as the game progresses. We had a lot of fun talking about things and getting to know each other. It seemed to progress as the game progressed."
Aaron Jones, Packers running back, said Love demonstrated "that he is going to continue fighting, he will keep grinding and that he is a true leader."
Jones said, "He took over the huddle when we were down 13-0. He's still there in the huddle. 'Hey guys, we need to play.'" Jones added. You can see that he was a great quarterback and you can clearly tell by his game that he didn't get down on himself.
Love admitted that he struggled with nerves in the beginning, and missed his first two throws (a three-and out) but that he felt he proved he is a good starting quarterback. It is possible that he won't get another start this year, so it will be the Packers only opportunity to evaluate him in a game setting.
After the Packers traded up to acquire Love in the first round, the Packers did not allow him to play as a rookie. After the Saints' season-opening defeat, Love was assigned to mop-up duties. He then watched Rodgers win seven consecutive games before his positive COVID-19 testing.
LaFleur stated that Rodgers will play next week against Seattle if he meets all protocols. LaFleur stated that Rodgers can return to the Packers as soon as Saturday, which is the day before the game.
Love claimed that Rodgers told him before the game that he had called and said: "Just go out and ball out." He was very excited to see me. He said to trust his feet which I thought was a great advice.