Playoff Push Comes Down to Aaron Rodgers
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers ranks alongside the likes of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady when discussing the best in the league. He has certainly regained his elite form in 2016. The Packers are currently at 8-6 and Rodgers has almost single-handedly managed to drag Green Bay back into the playoff battle after a 4-6 start.
Mike McCarthy’s men last missed out on the postseason in 2008 and that looked like a distinct possibility this year. However, with two games to go, the Packers can still finish atop the NFC North. All they have to do is win out.
Much of the credit goes to Rodgers. After a slow start, he has enjoyed a solid year, especially when you consider Green Bay’s injuries and struggles with the running game this season. The Packers star was voted into the Pro Bowl for the sixth time this year and has a chance to win his third league MVP.
Rodgers has recorded eight games this season with multiple touchdown passes and no interceptions. Pro Football Focus currently has Rodgers graded out as the fourth-best quarterback. That’s miraculous considering he was one of the worst-graded quarterbacks early in the season.
Highest-graded NFL QBs this season
1. Tom Brady, 96.4
2. Andrew Luck, 91.8
3. Matt Ryan, 90.8
4. Aaron Rodgers, 89.7
5. Matt Stafford, 87.9 pic.twitter.com/AY2XScccLK
— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) December 20, 2016
Rodgers has thrown 32 touchdown passes this year, second only to New Orleans star Drew Brees’ 34. In addition, he’s sixth in passing yards with 3,781 and fifth in quarterback rating (100.3).
To say Rodgers has carried the Packers’ offense or late would be an understatement. He certainly has been one of the primary reasons the team is currently on a four-game win streak and that they even have a shot at another NFC North crown.
Per usual, oddsmakers still love the Packers chances. They are priced at 20/21 at bet365 to win the division.
With the way Rodgers has been playing, would it be a surprise to anyone if they did indeed pull off that feat?
Ultimately, the Packers can eliminate the Minnesota Vikings from playoff contention with a victory over their rivals at Lambeau Field on Christmas Eve. Another success, which would be their sixth in a row, against the Detroit Lions in week 17 would cement their standing at the top of the NFC North.
If the Packers remain in their current form in the coming weeks, Green Bay will finish 10-6 and a earn home playoff game against one of the wild card teams.
Write the Packers and Rodgers off at your peril, Green Bay are serious contenders with No. 12 playing at an elite standard…