It was Monday morning, coffee is made and fans were enjoying the 24-23 comeback win over the Chicago Bears. Aaron Rodgers was playing with a knee sprain and made things happen with wideouts Geronimo Allison, Davante Adams and the Bears killer, Randall Cobb in a short time period. Then the best universal quote from everyone was the log to the hot take fire…
We know that “the Packers need Aaron Rodgers to get to the Super Bowl.”
Kind of a broad statement (per usual) because according to them, the Packers are one player and 52 unnamed players there for window draping. Don’t believe me, that’s what Colin Cowherd of FS1 says all the time. “The Packers owe Aaron Rodgers…Khalil Mack” and my favorite, “The Packers escaped last night.”
It’s probably why I cringe every time the national media talks about the Packers…I mean Aaron Rodgers. I forget sometimes that is the only hot take spoken.
While it was amazing to watch Rodgers win another for Green Bay. However, what led to second half adjustments by new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine? Cris Collinsworth of NBC Sports pointed out the exotic blitz packages that Pettine has created and how they found the weakness on the Bears offensive line with left tackle Charles Leno, Jr. as they stacked two to three defenders on the left side and sack Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky three times in the second half.
Pettine is cleaning up the mess that former defensive coordinator Dom Capers left behind with a defense that was ranked in the top 25 for the last four years. His visual history has shown that he creates old school 3-4 blitz schemes and create man to man nightmares for the near future. The Rex Ryan disciple was able to clamp down on the Bears offense and leave Trubisky with a 77.2 QB rating and 171 passing yards. It’s going to take time to rebuild chemistry throughout the season but Pro Bowl defensive end Mike Daniels said it best back in June about being coached by Pettine. “It’s like Christmas every day.” That’s encouraging.
Again, it’s great that Rodgers pulled off a heroic comeback on Sunday night. However, it doesn’t matter how terrifically tooled you are as a quarterback. You need a stout offensive line to give time in the pocket and while they looked beatable in the first half, things changed. In the second half, when Mack was lined up against right tackle Bryan Buluga, Buluga knew that he only had to hold him for three to four seconds, on account of the quick tempo offense. He was more aggressive with his technique leaving enough room for Rodgers to sling it out. How did David Bakhtiari do? Put it this way. The Bears pass rush was nonexistent and they have solidarity in the interior too.
So, while every national sports radio show continues to slurp the majesty of Aaron Rodgers, true Packers fans understand that there is more to the team than Aaron Rodgers on their road to another Super Bowl.
But, please do continue thinking that the Packers are a 53-man roster of one. That hot take is so 2011, may need to find new material for Week 2.
Jake Turner is the host of the passionate Turning Points podcast on iTunes and co-host with Mark Eckel on the Pack a Day podcast. Follow him on twitter at @JakeTurnerSport Instagram: jaketurner61.