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Packers regular-season preview capsule

Packers regular-season preview capsule



New faces: Coach Matt LaFleur, offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, QB coach Luke Getsy, O-line coach Adam Stenavich, TE coach Justin Outten, WR coach Alvis Whitted, ILB coach Kirk Olivadotti, OLB coach Mike Smith, OL Billy Turner, OLBs Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith and Rashan Gary, Ss Adrian Amos and Darnell Savage, CB Ka’dar Holloman, RB Dexter Williams.

Key losses: Coach Mike McCarthy, WR Randall Cobb, OLB Clay Matthews, DT Mike Daniels, FB John Kuhn, LB Nick Perry.

Strengths: Aaron Rodgers. Packers still have one of best quarterbacks in league who looks to rebound from relatively down year. Linebacker. Defensive coordinator Mike Pettine returns for second year with ILB Blake Martinez and new OLBs Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith and rookie versatile athlete Gary that are expected to bolster Green Bay pass rush.

Weaknesses: WR depth. Packers have top receiving option Davante Adams who enters sixth season in Green Bay. Adams had career highs in receptions (111), receiving yards (1,386) and receiving touchdowns (13) one year ago. But options behind Adams still in question. Green Bay expects big seasons form WRs Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Equanimeous St. Brown, Geronimo Allison and TE Jimmy Graham. Rodgers also loves WR Jake Kumerow.

Fantasy Players to Watch: Adams and RB Aaron Jones. Adams will again be Rodgers’ top target and is expected to have third straight Pro Bowl-caliber season. Jones, who feels “slept on,” says he has a lot to prove this year. His numbers jumped in second season; expect another massive statistical leap in 2019.

Vegas says: Win Super Bowl 22-1. Over/under wins 9 1-2.

Expectations: Six wins are unacceptable in Green Bay. Moves by GM Brian Gutekunst have made defense look bigger, faster and stronger. Offensively, as long as Rodgers is healthy and under center, Packers’ expectations will be and should be high. Green Bay has missed playoffs in each of last two seasons. Chances there will be playoff-less third straight campaign are unlikely.

More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

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