What does the Green Bay Packers’ 1-3 playoff record since the 2010 Super Bowl run mean? That’s almost an impossible question to answer, but it certainly should heighten the Packers’ sense of urgency even more for this Sunday’s game against the Dallas Cowboys.
A lot of people go crazy over playoff results because obviously the goal is to win the Super Bowl every season. However, a lot of people do not seem to get a grasp of how hard that is to do, especially to do it multiple times with the same quarterback. Only one out of 32 teams can raise the trophy at the end of the year and only 11 quarterbacks in NFL history have won multiple Super Bowls. Those don’t seem like the best of odds.
Even though the postseason is treated so differently, it’s still only representative of one game. So much can happen over the course of one game that random variance will occur and crazy things will happen. That’s how things like Eli Manning being one of those 11 quarterbacks to win multiple Super Bowls happens.
Speaking of Manning, the Giants are an interesting team to look at in comparison. They have won multiple Super Bowls recently in 2007 and 2011, but have completely missed the playoffs in six out of the last seven seasons, and they were only 9-7 in 2011. They have won an extra ring in recent years than the Packers, but the Packers have given you consistently good football to watch every season, while the Giants have mostly been mediocre other than two times they got hot at the right time. Logic would dictate the Packers would have been the better team since 2007, but in one game sample sizes random things happen.
Logic would also dictate that the longer the Packers keep giving themselves chances the more likely they will be to breakthrough again. The Giants have been justifying their recent poor seasons with the rings when they probably should have been making more drastic changes.
Random things definitely have happened over these three Packers losses. A huge amount of drops and fumbles killed them in 2011, they were playing well in San Francisco until the Jeremy Ross fumble opened the game up and if Micah Hyde holds onto an interception the Packers win that game and likely win at Carolina the following week and we are not even having this discussion. Not to mention the absurd amount of injuries the Packers had last year in that San Francisco matchup.
The regular season is still the large sample size, and the Packers are the only NFC team to make the postseason five consecutive seasons. That counts for something. Fortunately, the Packers haven’t panicked and stayed the course with what they do. I must admit I would have been done with Dom Capers after last season, but I cannot argue much with what the defense has done so far this season. It has been much improved.
It’s hard to throw away 12-4 seasons in the NFL like they don’t matter, but ultimately that’s what a lot of people choose to do. Since winning the Super Bow is the ultimate goal, is beating Dallas and losing in the NFC Championship or Super Bowl any better? Losing a third playoff game at home certainly be hard to swallow. Everything sets up well for the Packers this year, especially injury wise assuming Aaron Rodgers can be close to normal. This puts more pressure on the Packers since, Dallas kind of comes into Lambeau with not much to lose since their expectations coming into the season were very low, and they have already won a playoff game this season.
It’s a very hard thing to put into perspective as a fan. I struggle with it a lot. You want to win the Super Bowl every year, but you also want to be appreciative of just how good this Packers team has been since 2009. Not many fans have had it as good as we have. Even the mighty New England Patriots haven’t won a Super Bowl since 2004. Do their fans look at them as recent failures like some Packers fans look at their team like? All-time great quarterbacks like Peyton Manning and Dan Marino never won multiple Super Bowls. It ain’t easy, especially in an NFL designed for you to go through cycles. Whatever happens on Sunday just try to enjoy the ride.