Sep 8, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews (52) faces San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) after the sack during the third quarter at Candlestick Park. The San Francisco 49ers defeated the Green Bay Packers 34-28. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Rodgers: Optimistic about the Green Bay Packers defense

On Thursday, May 29, Green Bay Packers‘ quarterback, Aaron Rodgers met with reporters in the Lambeau Field locker room.

During this short interview, reporters asked Rodgers a variety of questions. Like any interview there were some subpar questions and really good questions.

In this meeting, there was one particular question that got my attention because it grabbed at Aaron Rodgers’ thoughts on the Green Bay defense. The reporter stated that, “We saw Seattle with a dominating defense. Did they prove that defense still wins championships?”

Dec 29, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) drops back to pass against the Chicago Bears during the fourth quarter at Soldier Field. The Green Bay Packers win 33-28. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Rodgers’ response was great.

Like any quarterback would say, Rodgers came back with, “Well, they scored 43 points so it was the offense.”  Not entirely true, Mr. Rodgers, because a good chunk of those 43 points came from special teams and the defense. Rodgers then continued by stating that, “You also need a good offense to complement a defense,” thereby giving defenses a little more credit than he previously gave.

In this day and age, does defense win championships? Or is the best defense a good offense? 

ESPN’s Sunday NFL Countdown, has pointed out that 38 (out of 45) Super Bowls have been won by a top 10 defense and 22 have been won by a top three defense. On the flip side, there have been 38 Super Bowl champs with a top 10 offense and 20 Super Bowls champs with a top 3 offense.  That creates a strong case for offenses.  Maybe it’s a “good defense with a better offense” that wins championships. While we’re at it, what came first, the chicken or the egg?  

Anyway, in recent years the Packers’ defense has taken some hits from the media and the fans but Rodgers explained that the defense is primed and ready for the 2014 season. Rodgers talked about Mike Daniels stepping up this year into a bigger role and the versatility that Julius Peppers will bring to the defense.

He also touched on the depth Mike Neal and Nick Perry bring to the defense as well as the importance of a healthy Clay Matthews.

Aaron Rodgers ended his thoughts about the defense by acknowledging the young talent and the anticipation of watching the defense come together and play at a high level.

Rodgers thought the defense was excited about the opportunity to be viewed as equals to the offense. Wouldn’t that be something? In recent years that thought seems like something from another planet.

Could that change this year?

Will the Green Bay Packers’ defense find the level of praise with which the offense has been rewarded?



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  • Jeff Kramer

    The defense has been banged up for the last two years or so which makes it difficult to really know what the Packers have. I would say that adding talent in the backfield should give the front seven that extra second needed to pressure opposing QB’s or pick up the sack. It also is true we need more production from the front seven this year to take some of the heat off our cover guys. Overall though, I think the jury is still out on the 2014 Packers defense. We will have to wait until preseason to get a good look.

  • RyansDad

    A great defense requires a great offense! Tome Of Possession is all important – TO THE DEFENSE!!

    Hey- get out there and run up and down that field for several minutes, then see how well you can cover a fresh receiver or get to the Quarterback. These guys are great athletes, but they are humans – who need a little rest and recovery time

    In 2014, long, sustained drives for TD’s and fewer injuries will put this D into the top 5! (Or darned close)

    • Michael Castelaz

      Atta boy, RyansDad… finally somebody said it. All last year I’m going… Man, they can’t keep the D off the field. Even when Rodgers was playing. They were bad in the first quarter, they had a ton of 3 and outs… some turnovers… all around bad play and short drives. No wonder a banged up defense just kept getting worse. Depth is one thing, but limiting the time on the field is another. If that line can run block and Eddie Lacy keeps it up, hopefully we’ll win the Time of Possession battle all year long.

      • Michael Castelaz

        IN fact… even that one year where we thought we had a great defense… couple years ago, the year they generated all those turnovers. That wasn’t a dominating defense, but by generating 37 takeaways or something like that, they sort of saved their own butts.

  • Peter Maiz

    A great defense can get the ball back through fumbles and interceptions. We saw it with Seattle all year in 2013. So, we’ll see it first hand when we play them. If they beat us (and they’ll have the 12th man) than, indeed defenses win games.

  • shavager

    Packers fans–when the Packers had a 15-1 record in ’11–they were AVERAGING 35 points PER game, after the KC Chiefs beat’em playing two safeties deep–the league took notice and Packers averaged only 27 points PER game in ’12. Last season Packers only averaged 26 points PER game, even with Aaron Rodgers but the DEFENSE gave up an AVERAGE of 27 points PER game–that’s LOSING football, no matter what league you play in. DEFENSE cost Packers several games as well as the tie simply because they could NOT get third down stops when needed late in games. Defense this year looks as good as the ’10 SB team does on paper, here’s hoping for a big year from defense since Pack’s offense can compete with any NFL team.