Matt LaFleur politely requests your respect
After a convincing primetime defeat of Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints, Matt Lafleur’s regular season record stands at an impressive 16-3. Behind fantastic play calling and a reinvigorated Aaron Rodgers, Lafleur and the Packers are poised for another stellar season. Lafleur’s coy personality would never allow him to demand respect, but his team’s performances suggest you seriously start to contemplate his name in the Coach of the Year conversation.
The Packers were ridiculed by national media, and even some of their own fans, for not improving their roster from a 2019 team that finished 13-3. Many of these same people believed the 13-3 record was not an accurate representation of how good Green Bay was in 2019. So, if the Packers do not have a top roster in football then how have they won so many games in the last 13 months? Simple Answer: Matt Lafleur.
In 2019, the Packers relied on a stout defense led by a wicked pass rush and a young, talented secondary. The offense was short of explosive but controlled the game by winning time of possession with a consistent running game. Lafleur’s offense showed some glimpses, but were not consistent enough to be considered elite.
With Kenny Clark missing the last two games, the Packers defense has yet to regain their consistently dominant form we saw in 2019. Vice versa from 2019, Lafleur’s offense is picking up the slack from the defense.
The Packers are averaging over 40 points per game, and have the most points through their first three games in franchise history. The Packers offense is 17-34 on third down (2nd in the NFL) and 3-5 on fourth down. The run game is averaging 5.5 yards per carry (2nd in the NFL) and Rodgers has been throwing a league average of passes (15th most), but has the fifth most yards (864). As a wise man once said, “All gas no f****** brake”.
In his short career, Lafleur has already defeated a litany of respected NFL coaches:
He will look to add to this list in the following weeks as the Packers face the Falcons before their bye and then the Buccaneers, Texans and Vikings before heading to San Francisco on a short week. Stacking up wins before the inevitable clash with the Packers’ 2019 nemesis, the 49ers, would solidify Lafleur’s candidacy for Coach of the Year.
However, the Packers still just need to take things one game at a time.
The Falcons (0-3) have failed miserably at putting games away in 2020. Dan Quinn’s seat is as hot as a leather chair in a black sedan that has been parked in the Arizona heat for eight hours and that makes the Falcons a very dangerous team. The Packers offense should be able to roll on Monday night, but Davante Adams presence in the lineup would certainly makes things easier. Fingers crossed that Kenny Clark can make it back onto the field to help shore up the defense.