The natural reaction to the Green Bay Packers crushing defeat at the hands of the Dallas Cowboys is to panic. For the first time in a long time the Packers look extremely vulnerable. The offense couldn’t move the ball, Aaron Rodgers looked innacurate, and the defense got bulldozed by two rookies.
Here is why I am staying optimistic and I think Packer nation should still have faith they can turn it around:
- Aaron Rodgers has been somewhere between bad and mediocre for the past calendar year. However, Rodgers has been driven to be great since high school, and I think Sunday is the kick in the pants he will find a way to fix his problems (his mechanics, starting with his footwork). Say what you want about Mike McCarthy, but he has been fantastic working with Quarterbacks, and I think they will take the time to work on the fundamentals to get Aaron Rodgers back to where he needs to be.
- The Packers still have a fantastic defense. No team can be expected to survive injuries to their top 3 Cornerbacks. Shields, Rollins, and Randall have to get and stay healthy, but the Packers have a fearsome pass rush that can lead them on a run in the playoffs.
- The schedule sets the Packers up to go on a run. They only have two days to lick their wounds before the Bears come to town, but this is a game the Packers should be expected to win even with their struggles. Then the Packers get 10 days off to get healthy before traveling to Atlanta. The Falcons have been stellar, but then the Packers get to face the struggling Colts and Titans.
At the end of the day the Packers have to improve in a lot of areas. I wouldn’t dare say R-E-L-A-X, but we’ve seen even great Quarterbacks struggle and it’s important to remember being the bad team in October doesn’t mean you can’t be a great team in January. At the end of the day, consider me one Packer fan who is putting my faith in Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers figuring it out rather than falling on their faces. And it all starts with proving the Bears still suck this Thursday. And if the Packers continue their struggles on Thursday, feel free to say you told me so in the comments.Andrew Mertig is a a lifelong Packers fan and draft enthusiast. He has covered the NFL draft for radio and television stations in Green Bay. He is currently a host of the Pack-A-Day podcast and a writer for PackersTalk.com. You can follow him on Twitter @andrewmertig