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Packer Over/Unders: Aaron Rodgers

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Packer Over/Unders: Aaron Rodgers

With the Supreme Court voting 6-3 in May to strike down the federal ban on sports gambling, the door has been opened for individual states across the country to initiate their own legal, government-regulated sports betting industries.

And while it is yet to be seen how many states will legalize sportsbooks and how quickly (ESPN keeps an up-to-date map and list of state progress here), it’s clear that gambling’s influence and nomenclature will be an important part of sports for the foreseeable future, especially in the NFL.

Gambling has long been part of the fabric of professional football, from tantalizing preseason win totals to bizarre Super Bowl proposition bets, all the way down to pseudo-gambling products, like daily fantasy contests. Even those with no interest in betting on games have been introduced to gambling terminology, have seen the value of viewing the game from the gambling perspective and have learned to trust the objective eye of Las Vegas.

With that as a backdrop, we’ll start a series that attempts to project the individual statistical performance of the Packers, broken down by each position group.

Most reputable sportsbooks don’t have over/unders this specific yet, so these numbers are my own, generated by aggregating various projections and influenced by past performance and other available betting numbers, such as MVP odds.

With that being said, there’s no better place to start than with QB1. It became crystal-clear last season that the Packers will only go as far as their all-everything quarterback will take them. The 34-year-old has some serious talent—along with some notable question marks—around him as he tries to rebound from a season spoiled by injury.

On a quick side note, watching Rodgers play quarterback in his prime is among life’s great pleasures. To watch a living legend of the game display superlative traits and a genuinely unique style every week is an absolute treat. I think some fans lose sight of that occasionally, while getting mad online about a “wasted prime.” Obviously, the goal for the team is more titles. But even if Rodgers never brings the Lombardi Trophy home again, his excellence is an absolute gift to every Packers fan. Ok, I’ll get off the soapbox. Now, on to the over/unders.

Under 64.5 percent completion

This was a tough one, right off the bat. Rodgers’ career completion mark is 65.1 percent, and he’s only had two seasons under 64.5. But this is a season of change for the Packers’ offense, with Joe Philbin returning as offensive coordinator and Mike McCarthy revisiting the entire playbook. The real casualty here is the departure of receiver Jordy Nelson, with whom Rodgers had a seemingly telepathic connection. With some mild injury concerns about reliable veteran Randall Cobb, Rodgers may have to throw to more unproven targets than he has in a while, and those complicated sight-adjusted routes and back-shoulder fades require chemistry and time.

Under 4,271.5 passing yards

The aforementioned chemistry concerns are certainly in play here, but more importantly, there’s a chance the Packers may run the ball more than some expect. Last year with Brett Hundley at the helm, Green Bay discovered an effective and diverse running game, fueled by young running backs who could be even better in 2018. It’s not as if McCarthy will suddenly turn into John Fox, but he may opt to limit the number of hits Rodgers takes in the regular season and lean on the running game a bit more than in the past.

Over 35.5 touchdown passes

As much as the partial overturn of Rodgers’ supporting cast may cause some early hiccups, this roster is stacked with red zone options. Tight end Jimmy Graham was a bit of an overall disappointment last year in Seattle, but he was an absolute weapon in the red zone, catching 10 touchdowns. Add the press-evading releases of Davante Adams and inside quickness of Cobb, and Rodgers could post gaudy touchdown numbers.

Under 9.5 interceptions

The degree to which Rodgers takes care of the ball is absolute insanity. He averages just one interception every 63 pass attempts, the best qualified rate in NFL history. His six picks in seven games last year were a notable increase, but he was only on pace for an eight-interception campaign before he broke his collarbone. He has hit double-digits twice in his career but not since 2010. It’s absolutely silly that the number has to be this low to elicit some thought, but No. 12’s track record necessitates a bit of silliness.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (13) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

ShanghaiKid's picture

In order from top down: Under (slightly), Over, Over, Under.

Turophile's picture

Over under sideways down,
Backwards forwards square and round.

Clapton out, Beck in.......
when will it end.

Lare's picture

My main concern is that Rodgers has a lot of distractions right now- contract negotiations, high profile romance in the spotlight, part ownership in the Bucks, coming back from injury, golfing & shark outings, the loss of Jordy Nelson & his QB coach, new OC and GM, new scheme changes, new TE's, WRs & OL, etc.

Hopefully Rodgers can put all this aside and stay healthy this season. If so, the team should be pretty successful.

Samson's picture

Stay healthy is the only thing that matters.
All the rest is before & after the actually field time.
Most of it means nothing to a professional athlete.

fastmoving's picture

actually most of your listed distractions (if not all of them) are pretty good things

- maybe a new contract (getting paid....a lot)
- new love (felling lucky)
- good investment (new toy)
- healthy again
- interesting hobbys
- new coaches with new ideas
- new weapons

but I guess some people just like to complain...even about the good things.......and spin them around till they fitting in here doom world.

give me a break, man..............

Since '61's picture

I'm going over, over, over, under. MVP type of season.
Thanks, Since '61

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I'd go over, over, over and under.

It was great for me to watch Brockington, Lofton (even Dickey), and Sterling Sharpe play. They were great players. I don't know that I'd say their careers were wasted, precisely, but I'd say their careers could have been made more noteworthy absent ineptitude in the FO and coaching staffs.

I would suggest that there is a qualitative difference between them and AR. Rodgers might be the greatest of all time, and he plays a position that due to rule changes can now really affect, even dictate, the success of a team. He has been elite since 2009. It is hard to say how difficult it is to provide enough of a supporting cast to propel the teams he quarterbacks to greatness, but it hasn't been done enough. I suggest that fans might well feel underwhelmed by the overall team success during this period.

If I were a Cleveland fan, I suppose I could have tuned in to watch the greatness of LT Joe Thomas (and the 48-128 -.273 winning record). I did tune in to appreciate the play of numerous players including the greatness of Lofton and others, but also to watch rookies and 2nd-year players with hopefulness.

Johnblood27's picture

Sterling Sharpe was an incredible talent.

He was Beast Mode well before lynch.

I loved watching him simply run over and through DBs, and his speed and ability to gain separation led to his 100 reception seasons.

It is truly unfortunate he was injured.

Lofton was incredibly graceful. His raw speed was fantastic and his grace and route perfection coupled with his leaping ability made him the best of his time.

Can you imagine one of these guys with Rodgers? or with Favre for more than a couple seasons (Sharpe)?

The WR talent on GB has been mediocre at best with Favre and Rodgers generating stats to make the WR look better than they were.

Brooks could have been in this class had he stayed healthy longer, he was a special talent.

Im all hyped to have a round 1 WR next year!

That'll change by draft time though...

cap'n kirk's picture

I would argue that OL/Edge is where they should go next year. The bust rate of WR, in round 1, is higher than any other position. WR/TE should be the target in round 2.

Barnacle's picture

Over, under, under, and under. Our rushing and defense should be better and therefore less passing will be needed.

Spock's picture

I don't do fantasy football and have no interest in gambling (Truth: I spent four days in Los Vegas and gambled exactly zero money). I won't be reading a series on gambling here or anywhere else. For me it will be wasted space. :(

Johnblood27's picture

4 days in Vegas and not a penny placed on GBP to win the SB?

Shame on you! A little dough on sports futures sure makes the season a little more interesting. I cashed in on my UCF Knights last year, however I missed on my GBP wagers!

I do agree with the not gambling part, I am what is known in Vegas as a "donor"!

I quit playing games of chance a long time ago. I will always bet on my abilities, not on my luck or my ability to "play the odds". Its just not my strength.

Like I always say to other gamblers... There's a reason that their house is bigger than my house

Spock's picture

Johnblood27, I'm such a non-gambler that I didn't even know that betting on the Packers SB was an (legal) option! I might have made and exception and made a wager had I known that, lol. :)

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