The dream scenario for Packers fans could turn into a nightmare for other NFC teams battling for playoff spots.
When Aaron Rodgers first went down with a broken collarbone in a 23-20 loss to the Minnesota Vikings, the knee jerk reaction of Green Bay Packers fans was simple: we’re toast. With no one but the inexperienced Brett Hundley behind their perennial MVP candidate, things looked bleak, and a 1-4 record in the first five Rodgers-less games did nothing to dispel that idea.
But a funny thing happened these last few weeks, as the Packers managed back-to-back victories over the (admittedly uninspiring) Buccaneers and Browns, and combined with losses by other teams, a ray of hope emerged. Maybe Rodgers would be back in time for Week 15 and lead the team to the playoffs.
Ladies and gentlemen, the sunshine has arrived, and he’s wearing No. 12 and posting about his return on Instagram.
With Rodgers back in the saddle, the emergence of wide receiver Davante Adams as a Pro Bowl-caliber talent and a running games that’s been sparked by rookies Jamaal Williams and Aaron Jones, a playoff run now seems very possible. It won’t be easy, however, as the Packers have a tricky schedule down the stretch: at current No. 5 seed Carolina, home against Minnesota and then at Detroit in a Week 17 game that could possibly be for that final playoff berth.
The Pack may have to run the table, or at least win both the road games, in order to finish off this storybook ending. They may end up needing help from other teams too (a couple of Falcons losses, for instance, would definitely be nice). But at least with Rodgers, there’s more of a chance than anyone was giving him when he first left the lineup, and that’s enough reason to be excited about the last three weeks of the season.