Sports Illustrated’s Peter King loves Packers : Packers Insider

Sports Illustrated’s Peter King loves Packers

November 22, 2010 by  
Filed under News

Nov 22, 2010 ~ by Peter King, CNNSI

~Packers make case for NFL’s Best

~It’s hard to not have great admiration for Aaron Rodgers. After the Packers embarrassed the Vikings Sunday at the Metrodome, Rodgers made a beeline for Brett Favre at midfield, and they embraced for a good 20 seconds, both whispering into each other’s ear. It’s obviously been an odd relationship; they were friendly but never tight in Green Bay, and now Rodgers is proving there is life — very good life — after Favre in Green Bay, a prospect that once seemed unthinkable.I asked Rodgers if he could share anything he’d said to Favre at such an awkward and probably emotional time. Rodgers not only had played at a Favrian level back home in Green Bay, but now he’d come into Favre’s new place and finished the process of ripping the team’s 2010 guts out.

Green Bay 31, Minnesota 3.

Somewhere, in some deep place, Rodgers had to be feeling some measure of tremendous satisfaction, but he wasn’t going to show it in that embrace, and no matter what he thought of Favre, he realized the moment and knew it was only right to treat Favre with the dignity he hopes he’ll receive when replaced. Maybe sometime around 2024.

Hearing my question about what went on between he and Favre, Rodgers said, “I’d rather keep that private. I don’t think it’d be right to share it.”

Just the right answer.

The Packers, for what it’s worth, look like the best team in the league to me after 10 games for a couple of reasons (and if you want to say it’s the Patriots, I couldn’t argue much, or the Eagles or Falcons or Jets or even the Saints).

The defense has gotten early instability settled; coordinator Dom Capers has figured out the right personnel combinations, and the corner combo or Tramon Williams and Charles Woodson — who has turned into the kind of leader a head coach dreams of — is playing as well as any corner tandem in the league. Green Bay’s allowed 10 points in the past 12 quarters. The Packers shut out the Jets at the Meadowlands. In the past two weeks, they didn’t let two bad teams breathe.

Offensively, it’s been about Rodgers’ dominance — 75-percent passing, seven touchdowns, no picks in the past two weeks — and about the rediscovery of Greg Jennings.

"This is exactly the way I saw us playing this year,'' Rodgers said after his four-TD, no-pick day. "No offense to them, but when we play a team and we're playing the way I know we're capable of playing, we feel there's no way they can stop us."

 

A few weeks ago, coach Mike McCarthy saw how Jennings, a legit number one receiver, was being overlooked in the offense week to week, and he began to emphasize more plays for Jennings, more shots for him as the primary target. And he’s exploded since then. Check out the difference in Jennings’ first five games and his second five:

 
G W-L Target Rec. Yds. Avg. TD
5 3-2 31 14 183 13.0 3
5 4-1 45 32 520 16.3 6

On Sunday, Rodgers’ first of three touchdown strikes to Jennings was a great example of the new emphasis about getting the ball to him, and about Rodgers’ patience. Chased from the pocket, Rodgers kept surveying the field while keeping half an eye on Jennings because of what the Pack thought was a favorable coverage matchup. As he rolled left, Rodgers finally saw a wide-enough opening to get the ball through, and fired it, and Jennings caught it for the score. And the rout was on.

“This is exactly the way I saw us playing this year,” Rodgers said after his four-TD, no-pick day. “No offense to them, but when we play a team and we’re playing the way I know we’re capable of playing, we feel there’s no way they can stop us. And that’s the way we’re playing right now. It’s a good feeling to work the way we have and then have everything go the right way.”

Full story HERE

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