Packers: Aaron Rodgers has shown MVP form since week one loss
By Parker Moes
Reigning NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers has shown his true form since getting embarrassed by the New Orleans Saints in week one.
How was he able to turn himself and the team around in such a short time?
Let’s take a look at some points of interest into the turnaround from weeks one through three.
Point #1: Rodgers is getting the ball out faster from snap to pass
Per NFL Next Gen Stats, against both the Lions and 49ers when getting the ball out in 2.5 seconds or less, Rodgers was a combined 30/33 (90.3 percent), for 267 yards and four TDs with a 139.9 passer rating.
That’s much improved from week one against the Saints, where it took him 2.94 seconds from snap to pass and he went just 14/28 (53 percent), for 133 yards, zero TDs, and two INTs with an abysmal 36.8 passer rating. Getting the ball out quicker has been very beneficial for Rodgers and Green Bay’s offense as a whole.
Point #2: Offensive line protection
Per Jake Morley of Packer Report, the Packers’ reshuffled offensive line, which was missing Elgton Jenkins as well as David Bakhtiari, had Rodgers pressured on just 14.7 percent of of his dropbacks against the 49ers, which was the lowest week three percentage in the NFL among offensive line units.
Also, another interesting nugget regarding Green Bay’s offensive line comes from ESPN’s Paul Hembekides. Over the last two seasons, when they’ve won on every block attempt, Rodgers has a 90.0 QBR, which ranks first in the NFL in that span.
On the contrary, when it hasn’t, Rodgers has an atrocious 28.9 QBR, which ranks 26th. In short, when the offensive line plays up to its potential, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers‘ offense as a whole becomes nearly unstoppable.
Point #3: Rodgers and Adams have been as consistent as ever
Aaron Rodgers’ main man on offense has been wide receiver Davante Adams, especially when it comes to scoring. In fact, Adams set a franchise single-season record with 115 receptions in 2020 and tied WR Sterling Sharpe (1994) for the most receiving TDs in a season in Packers history with a league-leading 18 scores, becoming the first player in NFL history with 100-plus receptions and 18-plus receiving TDs in a season.
Adams also leads the NFL with 58 receiving TDs since 2016, 11 more than any other player over that span, and leads in total games with at least one TD catch (43) over the last five seasons.
Adams also is the only player in the NFL to rank in the top five in receiving yards per game and receptions per game in each of the last three seasons, per the Packers.
Lastly, Adams ranks No. 2 in the NFL in receiving yards per game (91.6 YPG), and receptions per game (7.5 R/PG), since 2018. In 2021 thus far, Adams has 25 receptions for 309 yards and one touchdown, averaging 12.5 YP/R. It’s safe to say that Rodgers and Adams have become a dominant duo in the NFL and in the annals of Packers history as well. They’ve been nearly unstoppable in recent years.
Green Bay now sees Pittsburgh come to Lambeau Field in week four. This marks the third time Aaron Rodgers and Ben Roethlisberger will meet up but it’ll be the first time ever that the two face off in the hollowed grounds of the frozen tundra, according to the Packers’ Dope Sheet for week four.
The Packers are looking to build off of their massive win in Santa Clara against the 49ers while the Steelers are looking to get back on the winning track after suffering a 14-point loss at home to the Cincinnati Bengals. Kickoff is set for 3:25 CST Sunday on CBS with Jim Nantz, Tony Romo, and sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson on the call.