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Cheese Curds, 8/16: Saints arrive in Green Bay for joint practices

After back-to-back years meeting early in the regular season, the Packers and Saints will get even more familiar with one another in practice and a preseason game this week.

Green Bay Packers v New Orleans Saints Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Almost one year ago, the Green Bay Packers opened the 2021 regular season against the New Orleans Saints in a game that was moved to Jacksonville, Florida due to hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico. That game was a brutal wake-up call for a Packers team that had Super Bowl aspirations — the Saints dominated en route to a 38-3 win as Green Bay failed to have success in any phase of the game.

The Packers won seven straight after week one, however, righting the ship and getting back on track for a third straight 13-win season. Just a year before that loss in Jacksonville, however, the Packers went into the Superdome and pulled out a thrilling early-season victory that put them on track for the NFC’s top seed.

This year, the Saints are coming to Green Bay. However, the game that they’re coming to play will not count in the standings; instead, the two teams will meet in the Packers’ lone home preseason game of 2022, which will be preceded by a pair of joint practices between the two teams on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Head coach Matt LaFleur seems to relish these joint practices, as the Packers have held them during every training camp that they have been permitted in LaFleur’s tenure. Last year it was the New York Jets coming to town, and in 2019 the Packers met the Houston Texans. (Of course, joint practices were not permitted in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.)

Let’s look ahead a bit to what we can expect from the two teams at practice in today’s curds.

Dope Sheet: Packers face Saints at Lambeau Field |
The Packers host the Saints this week for both a preseason game on Friday night as well as joint practices Tuesday and Wednesday.

Packers seek to limit altercations during joint practices with Saints |
Matt LaFleur told his team he doesn’t want the practices degenerating into after-the-whistle free-for-alls that put players at risk of injury. That may be easier said than done when the other side features chippy trash-talkers like Chauncey Gardner-Johnson and a walking instigator in rookie tackle Trevor Penning.

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Rashan Gary is on the precipice of true stardom, one of the several tiers of players Bill Barnwell considers as "breakouts."

Packers C Josh Myers was PFF’s highest-graded OL in preseason Week 1 | Packers Wire
The guard spots may still be a bit unsettled on the offensive line -- well, really just the right guard position -- but Myers' first action of 2022 indicates that the Packers will be just fine at center.

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