Packers Vs. Jets NFL Preseason Week 2 Schedule, Odds, Picks
Week 2 of the 2021 NFL preseason continues rolling right along with a handful of marquee matchups on Saturday. One of four games that will air on national television is the Green Bay Packers vs. New York Jets, which kicks off at 4:25 p.m. ET. This must-watch matchup is the late afternoon timeslot’s lone contest, following on the heels of a Bears vs. Bills Week 2 opener.
Check out the complete schedule, start times, TV channels, live stream info and updated odds for all of Week 2’s NFL preseason action below:
NFL Preseason 2021: Week 2 Schedule, Odds
Time ET: Home (Odds) vs. Away (TV)
Saturday, Aug. 21
1 p.m.: Bears (-4.5) vs. Bills (NFL Network, WFLD, WKBW)
4:25 p.m.: Packers (+2.5) vs. Jets (NFL Network, WTMJ, WNBC)
7 p.m.: Dolphins (-5) vs. Falcons (WFOR, WUPA)
7 p.m.: Panthers (+3.5) vs. Ravens (WSOC, WBAL)
7:30 p.m.: Steelers (-6.5) vs. Lions (NFL Network, KDKA, WJBK)
7:30 p.m.: Buccaneers (-1) vs. Titans (WTSP, WFTV, WKRN)
8 p.m.: Cowboys (-3.5) vs. Texans (KTVT, KTRK)
8 p.m.: Vikings (-2.5) vs. Colts (KMSP, WXIN)
10 p.m.: Rams (+6.5) vs. Raiders (NFL Network, KCBS, KTVU)
10 p.m.: Seahawks (+5) vs. Broncos (KING, KTVD)
Sunday, Aug. 22
1 p.m.: Browns (-5.5) vs. Giants (NFL Network, KTVD, WNBC)
7:30 p.m.: Chargers (+5) vs. 49ers (NFL Network, KABC, KPIX)
Monday, Aug. 23
8 p.m.: Saints (-4.5) vs. Jaguars (ESPN, WVUE, WJAX, fuboTV)
2021 NFL preseason games are live streaming via NFL.com, the NFL Network app, and NFL Gamepass.
Packers vs. Jets Week 2 Preseason Preview
The Packers will be slight underdogs at home today, a testament to how well the upstart Jets are looking with new head coach Robert Saleh at the helm. New York has plenty of intriguing young prospects dotting its roster, including a potential franchise quarterback in Zach Wilson. Wilson, along with many other of Gang Green’s high profile offseason acquisitions, should see the field for a significant stretch on Saturday.
Green Bay didn’t make many changes to a roster that finished last season with a second straight berth in the NFC Championship Game. While the Packers couldn’t break through and make a Super Bowl appearance, they elected to keep their nucleus in place for another run in 2021. Because of this, there aren’t too many new faces around Lambeau Field this offseason.
The organization did bring in a few quality rookies—including a first-round pick in Eric Stokes who could win a starting cornerback job this season—but most of last year’s starters will be back for another go this season.
It seemed that the Packers were going to be forced to make a change under center for the first time since 2008 earlier in the offseason. Reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers revealed he didn’t want to return to the team, but Green Bay’s brass was eventually able to convince the superstar quarterback to return prior to the start of training camp. While Rodgers is back in the fold for now, the Packers can’t afford to squander opportunities to develop their raw backup quarterbacks.
Jordan Love, the team’s first-round pick in 2020, was projected to take on the starting job if Rodgers sat out or was traded this offseason. The coaching staff kept Love on the field for 28 of the team’s 54 offensive snaps against the Houston Texans last week, having him play the entire first half before placing third-stringer Kurt Benkert in for the final two quarters.
While Love looked good—going 12-of-17 for 122 yards and a score—his teammates weren’t nearly as effective. Running back Patrick Taylor Jr. received the majority of Green Bay’s totes, gaining just 22 yards on his nine carries. Kylin Hill earned more snaps (23) than any other Packers RB, but only finished with negative-two yards on five rushing attempts.
Considering the Packers are just 2-3 in exhibition play since Matt LaFleur took over in 2019, including their blowout 26-7 loss to the Texans last week, it’s a tough team for bettors to trust against the spread at this time of year.
The Jets, on the other hand, opened their exhibition schedule with a victory over rival Giants at their shared MetLife Stadium. They didn’t pile up a ton of points in the 12-7 win, but the Jets saw No. 2 overall pick Wilson connect on six of his first nine preseason passes for 63 yards, while their new-look defense held opposing signal-callers Clayton Thorson and Mike Glennon to just 92 yards on 8-of-23 passing.
It appears that New York’s defense is ready to make a leap forward in 2021. The team ranked near the bottom of the league last year in most defensive categories, including a passing defense that gave up more yards than all but four other squads and a scoring defense that allowed nearly 29 points per game.
Unfortunately for the Jets, they recently lost prized offseason acquisition Carl Lawson to a season-ending Achilles rupture. The former Cincinnati Bengals edge-rusher was expected to make a monumental impact for a New York pass rush that recorded a meager 31 sacks in 2020.
With Lawson now sidelined, the Jets will see if Bryce Huff can fill his shoes. Huff recorded just 14 tackles and two sacks during his rookie campaign, but the undrafted second-year defensive lineman will likely assume many of Lawson’s snaps in 2021. He’ll need to prove he’s capable of assuming larger role, a quest that begins this afternoon against the Packers.
Huff is far from the only Jets player trying to earn his keep before the next round of roster cuts are due in on August 24. Every team will need to trim down to 80 players on that date, the last round of cuts before the final 53-man roster is due in on August 31.
With the Jets needing to do far more talent evaluation and depth chart sorting compared to the Packers, they will have a clear leg up over their foe today. While laying 2.5 points on the road isn’t an ideal situation, New York will likely play first- and second-stringers for more snaps, helping the team move to 2-0 while keeping Green Bay winless going into the final week of the 2021 NFL preseason.
Pick: Jets -2.5
Prediction: Jets 14 – Packers 6