The 2013 season saw the Green Bay Packers win the NFC North Division crown yet again. This was an impressive feat since the roster was a MASH squad for the majority of the way.
Quarterbacks Seneca Wallace, Scott Tolzien and the return of Matt Flynn to the Packers all took snaps under center when Aaron Rodgers suffered a collarbone injury that saw him sidelined for several weeks.
This is why Packers fans have to shudder at the news of fifth round pick Jared Abbrederis’s torn ACL and losing the Wisconsin fan favorite for the season – a player many hoped would bring a spark to the special teams and keep Randall Cobb off of return duty.
Now comes the news that tight end prospect Colt Lyerla will now be sidelined several weeks with a knee injury. One can only hope he will heal fast enough to give himself a legitimate chance to showcase the talent that have many fans excited around Titletown.
Fans have got to be wondering what a healthy Packers squad would be capable of. Let’s run through a list of the key components that were absent for the majority of the 2013 season.
Aaron Rodgers: Only appeared in nine regular season games;
James Starks: Appeared in 13 regular season games;
Randall Cobb: Appeared in only six regular season games;
Casey Hayward: Appeared in just three regular season games;
Clay Matthews: Appeared in 11 regular season games; and
Bryan Bulaga: Missed the entire 2013 NFL season.
If the Packers are to stay healthy for the majority of the 2014 season the sky could ultimately be the limit.
A team that can put a healthy Aaron Rodgers under center for an entire 16-game regular season schedule coupled with a healthy line and a core set of skill players could easily dismantle the Seahawks from their perch.
If the defensive squad can keep Clay Matthews on the field along with the other playmaker Casey Hayward, it could be one of the most improved units in all of football. Adding the likes of Julius Peppers, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and moving B.J. Raji back to the nose position could bode very well for Dom Capers’ seat of cherry red coals.
There is an enormous amount of hype surrounding the upcoming season from the fan base. People are ready to see Mike Daniels, Nick Perry, Micah Hyde and Brandon Bostick break out into top tier players at their respective positions.
We all know the 2014 storybook-happy-ending for the Green Bay Packers will all come down to health. The talent is in place led by the best talent in the NFL today, Aaron Rodgers.
Brett Favre is coming home, let’s hope the iron man mystique follows him right into the ring of honor.