Pack The Bag

I remember the 2005 NFL Draft like it was yesterday. Aaron Rodgers had to wait to hear his name called and he was drafted in the first round with the 24th pick by the Green Bay Packers and for the first three years of his NFL career, he was sitting behind and learning from one of the best quarterbacks ever in Brett Favre. After Brett announced his retirement in March of 2008, the Green Bay Packers decided to finally name Aaron as the starting quarterback. Since then, things have gone well for number 12 and he’s established himself as a star in the league and he’s no longer known as the guy that replaced a Hall of Famer. He’s made his own name and today, the Packers gave him a contract extension that will make him the highest paid quarterback in the NFL. He signed a four-year extension worth $134 million with a $57 million signing bonus.

Since becoming the starter in 2008, he’s truly developed himself into one of the best all-around football players in the game today and one of the two best quarterbacks in our league. Every year I watch him, I’m just amazed with his skill set and how his athleticism can change the entire dynamic of the football game. Even Tom Brady has stated that he’s stayed up late to watch Aaron play and is shocked at what he can do on the field. I love the way he throws the football because he makes it look so effortless and he can fling the football down the field from the pocket and on the run and when he lets the ball leave his hands, he’s placing it EXACTLY where he’s intending it to be so he’s pinpoint accurate. I also mentioned how he can really make defenses crumble with his mobility and this is honestly when I think he’s at his best when he buys additional time and scrambles to extend the play. Even in the pocket, he can shift his way around to stay on his feet and make some acrobatic throws. I know defensive backfields get tired of having to stick the Packers receivers because of the guy under center. I’ve seen him get drilled by defenders with the pocket collapsing and make a throw on the money to Randall Cobb for six points. One thing he’s become the king of is catching a defense when they have too many men on the field and he’ll quickly snap the football and fire it down the field with a penalty flag being thrown and the Packers getting six points. When the game is on the line, he’s one of the 3 quarterbacks I want with the football in his hands and leading my team down the field and we’ve seen these clutch moments from him many times. I think of the playoff game in Dallas in January of 2017. After the Cowboys tied the game, Rodgers and the Packers were given the football back and he threw a dart to Jared Cook on a 3rd and 20 and completed the pass for 36 yards and put the team in field goal position to win the game and they did. I think of the Hail Mary’s he’s thrown and I’ve been speechless watching him.

I think it’s safe to say that Aaron Rodgers just may be the most important player to his football team and I say that because look at how differently the Packers look without him on the field. Let’s go back to 2013. Remember when he broke his collarbone against the Bears on a Monday night? He was sidelined for about 5-6 weeks and the Packers struggled to win games. He comes back that season in week 17 in a crucial battle for the NFC North against the Chicago Bears and broke their playoff chances and helped lead the Packers to the division title. Last season, he injured his collarbone again and missed nine games, the Packers only won one of the games in his absence. Without him in the lineup, you miss the playoffs. With him, you’re basically a threat to go to the Super Bowl and you’ll be a favorite to win your division and at least 11 games tops. He deserves every single coin of this extension and my nickname for him has always been “Like That” because he’s simply clutch and automatic, like that.