The time has come for the comparisions to begin.
With each passing week, the possibility of an undefeated season for the Packers becomes more of a possibility. Sitting at 13-0, they are two thirds of the way to a perfect season, and repeating as Super Bowl champions. A repeat would be the first in the NFL since the 2003-2004 Patriots, and would mark the beginning of a dynasty.
But would a Super Bowl victory this season be more memorable than last season?
Last night, I asked this question to see what the thoughts of people were. The answers were, not surprisingly, split across the board as to which would be the more memorable season.
There was something magical about last season. Picked by many to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl, they overcame incredible odds to bring the Lombardi Trophy home. Fifteen players on injured reserve, losing Aaron Rodgers for a game and a half with a concussion, and being placed in must win games the final six weeks of the season to become champions are just a few of the reasons the 2010 season was special. They had a superior offense despite having a limited ground game, a dominating defense, and special teams that performed their best at the most important times. Mike McCarthy never let his players lose focus on what the ultimate goal was, and he succeeded in bringing a championship back to Green Bay, just as he said he would in his introductory press conference when he was hired.
This season, the expectations placed on the Packers was magnified. They walked into the season projected by almost everyone to repeat as champs. Bringing back key players such as Ryan Grant and Jermichael Finley, would only add to the offensive fireworks. Add to this the ongoing development of players such as Jordy Nelson and James Starks, and the fact Aaron Rodgers is in the process of having the best season ever by a quarterback, and it is easy to see why the Packers are averaging close to 36 points a game. Part of the reason they have to score in bunches is the defense is allowing just under 400 yards a game, but timely plays and a league leading plus 19 in the turnover battle has allowed the defense to keep opponents to 21 points per game. McCarthy has done an excellent job keeping his players focused, as he marches them to a repeat, and another title would add his name to the exclusive club of Lambeau and Lombardi as the only Packers coaches to have led the team to multiple titles.
It’s a tough choice, isn’t it? Trying to choose between greatness.
The 2010 Packers team was special. They reached the apex of the football world in dramatic fashion, overcoming incredible odds to do so. In the process, they were also able to put the spectre of Favre in the rear view mirror forever and win without him. It was a season for the ages, and one which will never be forgotten.
This year, the Packers are a legend waiting to be born. Since 1972, there has not been an undefeated team in the NFL. There have been flirtations since, but no one has ever achieved the dream of an undefeated season. The lure of a perfect season sways my opinion slightly in this direction. They have the chance to go down in history as one of, if not the greatest, team that has ever played. That is what would make the 2011 more memorable for me.
Choosing between greatness is not easy. One choice has already proven their greatness over a full season, while the other has shown how great they can be while still having games to play. Whichever season proves to be more memorable for you,trying to decide which team is better than the other is something special in itself. I’m glad the Packers have allowed us the luxury of having to make this tough decision.
Filed Under: John Rehor