Saturday, August 31, 2019

Are The Packers Going To Win The Super Bowl?

Just throwing it out there.

As you know, I’m not one to make bold pronouncements about my favourite NFL team.  If anything, I’ve tended to be a little pessimistic about the Packers’ chances since they have long had to weigh the genius of Aaron Rodgers against the mediocrity of Mike McCarthy.  It was an eternal Spy vs. Spy that, aside from the glorious Super Bowl 45, saw the evil side win out far too often.

But my optimism about this year’s Packers team stems from the simple fact that now, Rodgers is finally free.  Here’s the thing about Matt LaFleur — he doesn’t need to be a great head coach.  He might not even need to be a good head coach.  Just average would represent such a seismic jump over the McCarthy years that it might be enough to get the Packers not just into the playoffs, but possibly even into title contention once again.

It seems like much of the national media is still overlooking just how bad McCarthy was, in favour of taking potshots at Rodgers for being “difficult” (i.e. an NFL player with an actual personality, and who doesn’t have much time for the media) or a “coach-killer” (McCarthy was there for 13 years, oh yeah, it was a real revolving door).  Naturally, there will be some adjustment time as Rodgers and LaFleur get used to each other, as you’d expect for any player with his first new coach in 13 seasons.  The “disputes” that come up between them thus far have, in my mind, been wholly overblown.

As always, if Aaron Rodgers is healthy, the sky is the limit for the Packers.  Staying healthy is no small feat for a 35-year-old QB with a significant injury history, yet I think everyone is underestimating just how much Rodgers will go into this season running on pure spite.  You don’t think he eagerly wants to have a huge year and make it clear that McCarthy was the problem?  You don’t think Rodgers will be fired up by not running a 2009 offense anymore? 

There are a lot of good teams in the NFC, so a trip to the Super Bowl won’t be easy.  But be warned — you know how every NFL season features at least one team who comes out of nowhere to be a major contender?  Look no further than Green Bay.

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