Aaron Rodgers: In His Defense

Wishing everyone a happy 2020 and one filled with health and happiness, starting with another Packers playoff run!  Something to be immediately grateful for!

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has incited a wide range of discussion all season long.  Through a 13-win season, the team's highest total since 2011, Rodgers has had many up's and down's.

Whether you consider wins to be a quarterback stat or not, with Rodgers at the helm of the offense, the Packers are back in the playoffs and have earned a bye.  That, after what many are calling a down year for Rodgers.

The biggest reason why the Packers are the 2-seed in the NFC is because of their defense.  That's not something that the Packers have always had throughout Rodgers' career.

Before delving into the past, present and future of Packers' defenses, let's take a look at Rodgers' numbers this season to illustrate where they fell compared to his career totals and averages.

He had 4,002 passing yards and has eclipsed the 4,000 yard mark in every season that he has started at least 15 games with the exception of two seasons (2010 and 2015, Packers made the postseason in both).  Rodgers averaged 7 yards-per-pass.  Only once was his average lower during a full season with 6.7 yards per in 2015. 

Rodgers attempted 353 passes in 2019, which falls well within his usual range throughout the past 12 seasons as a starter.  26 touchdown passes (equal to 2018) was his lowest total in a full season since 2010.  Much of that is thanks to two things: Aaron Jones had one of the best seasons by a Packers running back and often found the end zone before Rodgers needed to and that stingy scoring defense that allowed just under 20 points per game.  Still, Rodgers' 95.4 rating was his lowest since 2015 and his only lower was in 2008. 

Rodgers had a career low in rushing yards over a full season at 183, mostly because he only averaged 4 yards-per-carry on 46 tries.  Only twice has Rodgers attempted fewer runs with 43 in both 2014 and 2018 but he totaled 269 yards in both, last season while playing through a significant knee injury.  

The reasoning that the Packers' receivers are sub par and that he doesn't have a solid-enough group to match previous season totals may have some validity.  However, the tape has shown time and time again that Rodgers missed many throws in 2019 that he has routinely made in the past.  To boot, with one of the top offensive lines in the league.

Maybe General Manager Brian Gutekunst saw this coming and realized his team needed a defense that could pull more weight.  Or maybe he was just tired of the Packers' defenses not upholding their end of the bargain when Rodgers does turn in an above-average day at the office.  Gute signed Za'Darius Smith, Preston Smith and Adrian Amos and used his two first-round picks on defensive players Rashan Gary and Darnell Savage.  

The impact of those moves has translated to a defense that turned in its best statistical season since 2015.  When Rodgers said "we got a defense" after the week one win over the Chicago Bears, even he couldn't have foreseen just how key that would be in the success of the coming season.

And it's about time.  To the surprise of few, after looking at the defensive outputs since Rodgers became a starter in 2008, it's clear that a lack of defense has been the main culprit of too many early playoff exits.

Only one time during Rodgers' reign as starting quarterback has he had a defense in the top 10 in passing, rushing and scoring defense and that was 2009, 10 years ago.  That year, the Packers were no worse than 7th in any of the three and led the league in rushing defense.  The following season when the Packers won Super Bowl XLV, the defense was again top 10 in passing (5th) and scoring (2nd) but dropped to 18th in rushing.  It wasn't until 2015 that they reached the top 10 in any of those categories when they were 6th in passing defense.

That's not to say that a top-10 defense is a requirement for the Packers to achieve greatness.  In 2014 when they should have appeared in a Super Bowl, only their passing defense was in the top 10.  In 2016 when they again reached the NFC Championship Game, only their rushing defense was in the top 10.  They were 30th in passing defense that season.

Back to that playoff bye the Packers are currently enjoying.  No surprise that a top-tier defense coupled with Rodgers still-occasional flashes of brilliance have the 2019 Packers in position to push for another Super Bowl.  All with a first-year head coach and after an offseason of many questions.  

Whether Rodgers can settle in and improve after another full offseason in Head Coach Matt LaFleur's system remains to be seen.  Even if Rodgers holds steady or happens to see a further drop in his numbers in 2020, the Packers do and should continue to have that defense that has been so elusive through many recent seasons.  If Rodgers wants another ring before he hangs up the cleats, this current team is set up to give him just as good of a chance as any.  Finally.

 

 

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Jason is a freelance writer on staff since 2012 and also co-hosts Cheesehead TV Live, Pulse of the Pack and Pack A Day podcasts.  You can follow him on Twitter here

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Comments (70)

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murf7777's picture

January 01, 2020 at 01:09 pm

So, your say’in we have a chance!

Nice article Jason. D win championships 80+% of the time.

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Bure9620's picture

January 01, 2020 at 01:42 pm

Is this a defense of Rodgers? Or simply saying this team has more balance?

Gute's plan is this. Give Aaron a terrific pass blocking O-line and a good scoring defense (allows 19.6 points per game) and creates turnovers. You get Davante, Jones and an over the hill Graham, but with this protection, Rodgers has what he needs to make this offense work. He has enough.

Brady had Edelmen and Gronk and a bunch of UDFA and won a super bowl.

Brees has Thomas and Kamara

To those "we need a WR" people, Rodgers has what he needs. Pass protection. When your QB takes up the amount of cap Rodgers does, he needs to be the engine of the offense. He needs to make it work. He should not need 3 or 4 elite receivers.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:01 pm

Agree, Bure. If we can protect our QB, we shouldn’t need a bunch of elite WRs. We’re using the RBs and the TEs....that #2 WR is usually either a blocker or a decoy.

I would like more running and better blocking for our offensive backfield. I think that’s a priority over another target for the passing game.

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Houndog's picture

January 01, 2020 at 03:07 pm

Leatherhead,
"that #2 WR is usually either a blocker or a decoy".

So what you're saying is that Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, Randall Cobb, James Jones, and Jordy Nelson were all just blockers or decoys at some point during their careers? Am I reading you correctly?
Really?

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Leatherhead's picture

January 01, 2020 at 03:34 pm

No. They ran in a different offense, Houndog, which emphasized individual matchup.

If you play 30 snaps and get targeted 6times, what did you do on the other 24 snaps?

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splitpea1's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:40 pm

Rodgers needs two reliable WRs and much better production out of the tight ends. Don't forget that Brees also has Cook (who we obviously should have retained), and that the Patriots have usually had better defenses, special teams, and always the best coaching staff.

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fastmoving's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:58 pm

Just right Bure, AR has more targets than most other QBs. Besides TEs of course. It was never about the WRs and no widout or widouts in the world would change a thing......
We just need a average play from our signalcaller. That should be more than needed….

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Cubbygold's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:38 pm

Couldn't have said it better. Gute gets a redo on Graham next year, let's hope that produces an even better group around him without any more $ spent on the offense

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Philarod's picture

January 01, 2020 at 08:14 pm

"Brady had Edelmen and Gronk and a bunch of UDFA and won a super bowl."

Look, Brady is great and could be considered the mythical GOAT quarterback. I'd say that Rodgers, statistically, has outperformed him almost every single year he's been the starting QB - both in the regular season and the postseason. And he's usually done it with even less.

As for Edelman and Gronk, Edelman is open on almost every play, and competes like a madman. He's at least comparable to Adams as a receiver. The Packers have never had a TE who is in the same universe as Gronk, and rarely had one who is in the same vicinity as even the 20th best TE in the NFL. Add a D that is consistently as good or better as the 2019 Packers D over the years and better coaching, and that has helped Brady enormously through the years.

The resentment of Rodgers around this forum is mind-boggling to me.

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packerbackerjim's picture

January 01, 2020 at 09:48 pm

I will just say they wouldn’t know a great QB if one were to bite them on the ass.

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jeschon's picture

January 01, 2020 at 01:38 pm

this is the best article

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ImaPayne's picture

January 01, 2020 at 01:45 pm

I beat Rodgers like an old muel this year. However his last game I realized it wasn't that he didn't show up it was obvious his receivers didn't. Kumerov is a one pass wonder, Allison can't get separation to save his life, grahm is fair at best, scantling really doesn't have the speed for his role. Thus Rodgers looks for Adams as the only reliable receiver. Lazard too when they play him.One speedy receiver who can stretch the field would would greatly improved Rodgers abilities.

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Bure9620's picture

January 01, 2020 at 01:50 pm

Possibly but this does not account for Rodgers underthrowing Kumerow deep for a pick, when Kumerow had his man beat. Overthrowing Jones horribly 3 times, once for an easy TD, and overthrowing Ervin for a sure TD. Yes Graham is awful, as is Allison. But he still has enough, those 2 should not be on the field.

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Oppy's picture

January 01, 2020 at 01:52 pm

Marcedes Lewis is a good, just completely ignored, option at TE.

Hopefully, Tonyan comes around and Sternberger develops in the future. Tonyan has displayed promise in flashes. just not ready yet.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:37 pm

He’s been mostly ignored as a receiver his whole career. Wonder why?

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Bure9620's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:39 pm

No idea, he seems decent after the catch too

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Oppy's picture

January 03, 2020 at 11:15 pm

I don't think that's an accurate depiction of Marcedes Lewis' career.

He is a very large body- a clearly a blocking TE first- who has good hands and moves unexpectedly well for a man of his size.

The jags would hit him once or twice a game, and he's averaged roughly 12 YPR on his career. Has over 30 career TDs/ Again, not a barn burner, but for a old-school blocking TE? I'll take that.

I would like to see him get a target or two a game.

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Oppy's picture

January 01, 2020 at 01:49 pm

It's strange that it's the same WR corp that played together all year, and yet, they had games where they scored many TDs. The same WRs also played together in MN, a game where the offense looked just fine.

All those WR woes don't change a QB blatantly off target with throws.

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fastmoving's picture

January 01, 2020 at 03:07 pm

You cant find somebody more speedy as MVS and he is also a bigger target than most, just like St. Brown.
Both were open last year a lot as AR forces the ball to Adams, time and time again. Dont know anyone can blame that on the WR. When it was wrong last year ist even more clear witch end of the pass is the problem. Dont know what the WR have to do with it......

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Lare's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:43 pm

There's no doubt MVS is fast, so is Usain Bolt. Too bad they can't catch the football.

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WestWi_Packfan's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:36 pm

Kumerow is a good blocker and has decent hands. The deep ball thrown to him could have been a big gainer but AR under threw him. I dont see him as the problem. Allison and MVS along with Graham have been dropping balls all year long. Aaron has been off a bit at times to add to the issues. I dont see Graham or Allison on the team next year. MVS will be given another shot but the Packers will bring in a speedy prospect to compete with him so next years WR and TE group should have a few new faces, we hope.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 06:58 pm

A high pick and a veteran will be brought into the WR group. Scantling and Allison can go. Kumerow will fight for the sixth spot. They will improve in 2020.

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4zone's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:00 pm

How many years have the WR's made AR look good? Maybe better than he was? Who knows? In the end, the next game will show if the Packers are the pretenders many think they are, or the real deal a 13-3 record indicates they are.

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Houndog's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:11 pm

Hell yes, they' gotta be the "the real deal a 13-3 record indicates they are".

Five of those wins (by a combined 33 points) came against teams that'll be drafting 2nd, 3rd., 4th, and 5th in the 2020 draft ! But they lost to the Chargers (who're tied for 5th) by 15 so you could deduct that making it 18 points.
Then they blew out the Panthers (picking 7th) by a whopping 8 points and lost to the 49ers by 29. Five more of their wins came against two teams at 7-9 (Den & Oak), 2 against the 8-8 Bears and 1 against the 8-8 Cowboys.

Hmmmm, that's 10 wins against $hitty teams without winning records and they lost to the 9-7 Eagles!
Their other 3 wins were against Minnesota (twice, once without their top 2 running backs) and the Chiefs without Patrick Mahomes.

Guessin' I'm one of those you mention who thinks they're pretenders!

Edit: Thanks for the thumbs down! It's OK, I know your sugar coated world is easier to swallow than the facts!

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pacman's picture

January 01, 2020 at 08:20 pm

I wasn't going to bother writing on this topic any more but this is ridiculous. AR used to be spot on with so many deep throws, droping them on WR's hand in stride, threading the needle, etc. And those back shoulder throws! He definitely USED to be the best of the best.

Unfortunately, most of that is now history. The overthrows are one thing. But the underthrows and behind throws are scary interceptions waiting to happen and have taken away many immediate TDs if he would have led them correctly.

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Oppy's picture

January 03, 2020 at 11:22 pm

I agree. The odd thing is, I believe Rodgers is, at least to some extent, intentionally NOT leading WR's because he's overly fearful they might not catch the ball or he's concerned he will put it too far out in front of them, and he's worried the pass wiill sail beyond the intended target and into traffic (a safety's hands) for a pick.

He's either HORRIBLY off or he's intentionally underthrowing WRs to force them to body catch. I have no idea. I just know it's obvious he's been underthrowing WRs and failing to lead them for the last two or three years.

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LayingTheLawe's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:02 pm

There was no defense here of Rodgers but defense of the Packers season. The Packers are a don't make a mistake, convert in the red zone, top ten scoring defense team this season. Its a jarring change from the high flying offenses we have all watched.

They certainly need a tight end drafted in the third round and some of the young receivers to improve or skill position pieces to be added in the coming seasons. But for this year they are just not explosive and I am not sure why people seem like they are waiting for the explosion to occur. If this team wins in the playoffs it will be because they slogged out a point total somewhere in the 20's and held the other team to less. But boy howdy is it ever an improvement over what we saw in 2017 and 2018.

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stockholder's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:19 pm

But But But But Eason Qb WA. And wouldn't Lazard make a better TE? Because he will only get replaced if the packers take that WR rd. 1.

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Bure9620's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:25 pm

Why do you want Lazard playing inline? He is best split out on small corners. Ask Darrius Slay.

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dobber's picture

January 01, 2020 at 03:34 pm

I am all in favor of replacing lesser players on the Packers roster with better players...especially better players on rookie contracts. I wouldn't be too worried if I'm Lazard, though, since there's plenty of chaff between him and the cut line.

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scullyitsme's picture

January 02, 2020 at 10:52 pm

^^^this^^^.

I don’t understand many on this site that take it personally when you want to get better. Get rid of mediocre players, draft/ pay good ones. The defense of the mediocre wide outs is mind boggling. It’s obvious we need better.

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Oppy's picture

January 07, 2020 at 02:54 am

It's not the idea that mediocre wide outs being replaced that offends; it's the placement of blame on mediocre wide outs to deflect from the realities that the starting QB's accuracy and decision making has been mediocre to poor that is hard to swallow.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

January 02, 2020 at 01:11 pm

They haven't thrown a single pass to a TE picked in the 3rd round while trotting out rhinoceros Graham. They also keep playing two of the statistically worst receivers in football in Allison and MVS and it took Rodgers pushing for Lazard before he was finally given some playing time. The coaches need to be better. With Allison, MVS and Graham playing so poorly why hasn't Sternberger been given a chance? Why hasn't Ryan Grant played a snap? There are coaches who coach based solely on practice and don't realize that some players are only good practice players. There's also the difficulty of replacing a starter, and MLF and his offensive coaching staff haven't shown the fortitude to be able to do that. Give Rodgers a legit receiver who can get open and catch while Adams is being double-teamed and this would be a different offense. And Rodgers wouldn't need to be defended.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 07:06 pm

Pressure from the front office?

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 07:03 pm

The one-ring circus has left town. Randall Cobb is gone. New timing. New scheme. Playoff time means run the ball down their throats and stop their running game. The QB has to make a couple Big Plays in these games to win them.
Rodgers doesn't have to carry the whole load as with muc Carthy's show.

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ricky's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:51 pm

Rodgers is missing passes (again) that he used to 'make in his sleep.' This is an observation that broadcasters and casual viewers are sharing. How many times have we seen a screen go bad not because it wasn't set up properly, but because Rodgers simply threw it at the feet of the RB, rather than where they could catch it and run. MVS is plenty fast, but Rodgers just misses the pass all too often- just off by a foot or so, but that makes the difference. And when the ball is delivered properly, MVS doesn't catch it. A double whammy. These guys are just not in sync with each other. Maybe this will emerge next year, but it just means another year of wasted opportunities. Besides, when did the Packers play their best offensive football? When Adams was sidelined, and Rodgers was forced to throw elsewhere and lean on the RB's and TE's to do more. Look at the Lions- once the team gave up on those "chunk plays" and took what the defense was offering, they moved very efficiently. Adjust the flow of the game to what works, rather than trying to force plays. As far as the stats go, they're nice, but the only one that counts is how many points each team has on the scoreboard at the end of the game.

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PAPackerbacker's picture

January 03, 2020 at 05:43 am

Well stated and you made an excellent point. They were running a better balanced offense when Adams was hurt. So why can't they repeat that? Spread the wealth. It worked before. It will work again.

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albert999's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:58 pm

Draft JUDY out of Alabama....receiver
Extremely talented kid and very fast

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Duneslick's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:01 pm

He will be long gone by the time GB picks. Top 5-10 player

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albert999's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:39 pm

Trade up to get him

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MWendlandt's picture

January 02, 2020 at 03:17 pm

No way. Never trade up for a receiver. For every Julio Jones trade up there is a Sammy Watkins deal. Or Breshad Perriman. Adams, Jennings, Jones, Cobb all were Day 2 picks. If there's a great one at 32 (Lamb, Ruggs) then grab them, but otherwise wait until Rounds 2-3 to grab one. This is a really, really deep class.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 07:09 pm

His teammate is better.

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Houndog's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:18 pm

Sorry Albert, no can do!
My x-wife's name is Judy! :)

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albert999's picture

January 01, 2020 at 02:59 pm

JUDY is crushing the Citrus bowl right now....over 200 yds receiving with 10 minutes left in 4th quarter

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albert999's picture

January 01, 2020 at 03:30 pm

Miss spell....JEUDY

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Thegravedigger's picture

January 01, 2020 at 04:14 pm

Im just still waiting for rodg to be his old self. It almost seems like he just flips a switch and turns it on by himself when it is needed. But there was one sequence in the 4th that bothered me in the lions game. It seemed like he went completely off script on first and second down going 5 wide instead of keeping jones in the backfield. Why go 5 wide when you have the threat of aaron jones? Luckily the d bailed them out.

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Timeout's picture

January 02, 2020 at 05:41 am

Does Rodgers call for the substitutions during the game or is it the OC - LaFleur? The 5 wide could be a result of not having Vitale or Jamal Williams available.

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GBPDAN1's picture

January 01, 2020 at 04:25 pm

My question is ; how does Rodgers look in practice?

I know he has a hard time hooking up with MVS, but how does he look in general during practice? Is he just as inconsistent throwing to the receivers in practice, or just in games? If he looks good in practice (accurate), then something isn't right during games?

If he's inconsistent during practice and missing throws, Rodgers is regressing due to age or collarbone injuries?

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Thegravedigger's picture

January 01, 2020 at 09:06 pm

I would like to hope that he really tries hard to work wit mvs because its obvious he has talent and speed. He is a young kid playing with a 36 year old superstar. Weve witnessed him make multiple plays early this year and last. Its obvious his problems are mental. He caught one pass 2 weeks ago. Two passes this week. I hope he steps up cus we need all the help we can get against drew brees. (Most likely)

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JohnnyLogan's picture

January 02, 2020 at 01:14 pm

MVS can't run routes and even with his speed doesn't have to moves to get much separation. He's just not that good.

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Duneslick's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:04 pm

Were stuck with him if he regresses Can't trade or cut him because of his contract and huge signing bonus

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Bearmeat's picture

January 01, 2020 at 05:44 pm

He's regressed in the legs and possibly the accuracy, although the latter is probably more in his head/ego. Which can be fixed. If it's not, however, I think we're stuck with him until after 2021. Which is too bad because the D is going to peak around then I think...

Either way, the time is now, or at the very latest next year, to draft his replacement.

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Packerpasty's picture

January 01, 2020 at 06:01 pm

13 wins and sweep the division, get a bye in the playoffs, and everyones bitchin' about something...Rodgers sucks, Graham and the TE's suck, after Adams all the other WR's suck, ILB's suck, run defense sucks, Marinez shouldn't be resigned, jeez, you'd think we were the Browns or Cinncy....oh well, I enjoyed most of the year, not that great expectations for a playoff run but you never know...must suck to be a fan of a team with 13 wins and division champs and not enjoy it...yes, Rodgers is old now for a QB like Manning, Brady, Rivers, etc...lost some athletic ability but he's who we got till we draft someone one different int he great draft crap shoot....have a nice bye week, find more to bitch about if it makes you happy....

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Swisch's picture

January 01, 2020 at 07:10 pm

Once again, the Packers could learn from the Badgers in creativity.
In the Rose Bowl, with Jonathan Taylor getting stuffed, the Badgers go over the middle congestion with a varied short passing game, and around it with multiple jet sweeps.
Fun and effective. Game still in doubt, but great play calling is overcoming a surprisingly hard-hitting defense.

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Swisch's picture

January 01, 2020 at 07:57 pm

Seemingly horrible, horrible, horrible call for offensive pass interference after the Badgers appeared to convert on a critical third down.
Highly skeptical of the explanation/rationalization given by the broadcast official.
Those Ducks on defense seemed to hit brutally hard on just about every play; excellent play calling by the Badgers on offense helped a great effort that came up a little short.
If the Packers fight like Badgers, and think like Badgers, can be a force in the playoffs.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

January 01, 2020 at 10:21 pm

"Whether Rodgers can settle in and improve after another full offseason in Head Coach Matt LaFleur's system remains to be seen. "

Oh he absolutely can. He just needs to work on fundamentals harder. Gute needs to get him another Reciever and/or TE. And MLF needs to hire a different WR coach and do a little more tayloring the offense to skillsets.

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Packers2020's picture

January 02, 2020 at 12:01 pm

So let me ask you all this:

Have any of you played QB or coached QB's?

Do you realize that when some of these overthrows happen that the WR may have flattened out their route and they shouldn't have or they went too far inside on a go route. There are a lot of things that go into a QB and a WR being on the same, especially when you have WR's that do not have a ton of separation. ML has already said in his pressers that it is not all on AR. The WR's are to blame as well on those factors.

Here is a bit of an article on AR and deep throws:

Among quarterbacks with at least 30 deep attempts, Rodgers threw 20 or more yards down the field the third-most often, at 16.3% of his throws in 2019, behind only Russell Wilson and Matthew Stafford. His adjusted completion percentage, accounting for drops, fell in under 38% on those deep shots, 23rd out of 31 qualifying quarterbacks.

On the other hand, his passer rating on those throws came in at a robust 111.2, ahead of players like Dak Prescott, Lamar Jackson, Drew Brees, and Deshaun Watson. Rodgers produced with a high degree of variance, but he produced.

Is AR perfect? No. Has he aged and regressed? Yes. He has missed throws but every QB does. To act like you want Tim Boyle in the game instead of AR is ridiculous.

And for those of you saying that we have enough talent at WR makes no sense. The more talent you have at WR and TE, the better an offense will be. The QB cannot carry a team to the SB by himself. It comes down to having enough talent and skilled players at positions to get wins. We have some talent and improved that talent except at WR. Look at what happened with adding two impact players on D. You do not think that would happen if we did that on O?

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JohnnyLogan's picture

January 02, 2020 at 01:27 pm

Best post of the day. Rodgers did miss wide-open receivers, but most of his overthrows were reasonable in that the receiver was so closely covered if he underthrew there would likely be an interception. That's what happened on the Kumerow play. Rodgers toned down his throw because Kumerow isn't that fast and wasn't really that open but Rodgers felt he'd at least win the jump ball. Those who argue he's lost his skills need only look at the TD to Lazard. A perfect throw. The toss to Jones on the screen, in traffic. The nice easy pass to Adams for a TD. Rodgers can still throw as well if not better than anyone. I think the Packer offense will explode against the Saints, now that Lazard is solidly in place as the #2 receiver, and as long as Allison and MVS are solidly in place on the bench. I think Sternberger will be a surprise option. And I think Ervin will be there in the slot on a good number of plays. Basically, I think MLF has figured out what he has and "It's time!"

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 07:18 pm

Sternberger has to see the field over Tonyan. Get him ready and use him.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

January 02, 2020 at 02:06 pm

"To act like you want Tim Boyle in the game instead of AR is ridiculous."

Nobody wants that, that is nonsense. Rodgers is missing throws, badly at times. If he wants safe throws maybe he can use the middle of the field where his stats are still excellent in the rarity he does it. Drew Brees does it, Tom Brady too. Those guys learned to adjust their games as they aged. I expect AR to do so as well, but a 13-3 season is a lousy time to be stubborn over it.

This stuff is like listening to the BF fans in the late 0's.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 07:21 pm

Both teams have run the same schemes for over 14 years. They scheme to their #1 option at the WR spot. Rodgers in year one of the LaFleur offense. Big difference.

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flackcatcher's picture

January 02, 2020 at 02:19 pm

Your frame is all wrong. Rodgers is being ask to run a play action base offensive scheme. The key in running it is not the WR, but the run game. Go back and watch the all-22 of the Lions game. The difference between the first and second half is stark. First half the Lions were not biting on the play fakes. Why? Because Rodgers was going deep, every chance he got. With the Lions in cover three every deep shot was covered to one degree or another. Second half, A. Jones in the run game with the O line punching holes with the outside zone action. That forced the ILB in and left huge voids in the soft middle which Rodgers exploited with his WR. The reality is Rodgers is not good enough to take the deep shots every time. But, if he runs the offense, with the run game then he will have the time to set and throw. And when he does that, even on a bad day like Detroit he is lethal. He is not good enough to free lance anymore.

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Packers2020's picture

January 02, 2020 at 02:43 pm

Flack,

I do not disagree with what you are saying but the game plan was also to stretch the field and throw deep against the Lions. ML said so. Throwing deep was not AR just throwing deep because he wanted to. It was the game plan.

Now, could he have been more accurate and made a better decision here or there. Of course.

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flackcatcher's picture

January 03, 2020 at 04:31 am

Rodgers had the option to take second option which was in the voids. He didn't. Now was that on him or MLF I don't know. But it stalled the offense and left the team with no rhythm in the first half. This offense pass system is based on a number of set routes with only one option per route. Both the QB and WR know the route being run. No excuse on either end. Taking the second or even third option which was open was there. Rodgers choose shot plays and stalled the offense out in the first half. While I don't believe the first half is all on Rodgers. He has to know when to dial it back and take the lesser yards. He didn't in the first half, and it almost killed this team. He knows it, so does MLF. Otherwise they would have gone with 11 personal for the second half too. Inexperience coach and veteran QB ego, it happens...

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 07:29 pm

That is absolutely correct. The team was down to Jones at the RB position with spot duty from Dexter. The Game Plan from every fan in the Nation called for the deep passing game. Graham dropped a key toss and Lazard couldn't place his feet. If Williams was available to run those wheel routes he catches the ball with his height and extension advantage over Jones. Rodgers has to show the safety a look to the Wr before tossing the wheel unless they go two-step release.
On one wheel to the right Jones mis-played his footwork getting out of the backfield and lost the half-step needed for the completion. Close on all three shots. Levens or Starks make the catch with their taller frames. All week to iron this out.

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Chevy572rat's picture

January 02, 2020 at 02:21 pm

Very well said Packers2019. Yes Rodgers needs to play better, we all agree on that, but people don't realize when receivers don't create separation or don't run the route accurately, it forces Aaron to have to throw into very, very tight windows. AR can throw dimes, but shouldn't have to as much as is being required. None of these younger guys are going up to fight for the ball or forcing a PI call either, a good veteran WR knows how to get a flag on an errant or 50/50 ball. We need a GOOD TE, no ifs, ands, or buts. Another veteran pickup at WR would also be a plus.

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PAPackerbacker's picture

January 03, 2020 at 05:56 am

Rodgers stated he wants to be coached. Is it Rodgers who keeps throwing the deep ball on 3rd and short or is it LeFleur who is making the calls? Or is it a combination of both? Either way the team needs to convert more 3rd downs and quit going for the long pass so many times when all they need is 2 or 3 yards. Keep the sticks moving and go to the hurry up offense to keep the opposing defense off guard. Spread the wealth. The talent is there. It worked well when Adams was side lined due to injury. It will work again.

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4thand1's picture

January 03, 2020 at 08:23 am

AR has lost Jordy, Cobb,(Gute should have signed) and Cook over the past few years, all players he lobbied for and trusted on the field. No wonder he got disgusted with McCarthy and Ted and it showed on the field. They draft a bunch of unknowns and sign a TE who drops passes and can't run anymore. Of course he's going to look for Adams more, he's the only one he really trusts. I say he plays lights out in the playoffs. They will run, throw to backs, and play ball control.

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Chevy572rat's picture

January 03, 2020 at 06:09 pm

Couldn't agree more 4thand1, and I'm hoping that some hurry up offense will create the spark in the playoffs . Play Like CHAMPIONS !!! Go Pack !!!!

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 03, 2020 at 07:40 pm

La Fleur should look up Walsh's playbook when he schemed Jerry Rice out of double and triple teams for the catch.

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