In Sunday’s season-opening win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers looked a lot more like the NFL MVP version of himself from two years ago than last season’s subpar (by his standards) “Rodgers Lite.”
That’s a good thing for the Packers and their playoff aspirations. In nearly falling to the Jaguars, a flawed Packers team demonstrated they’re going to need another huge season from Rodgers if they’re going to make any noise in January.
At first glance, Rodgers’ numbers in the 27-23 win don’t exactly look worthy of talk about individual accolades and shiny trophies. He completed 20 of 34 pass attempts for 199 yards and a pair of touchdowns. His counterpart on the Jaguars, Blake Bortles, completed a higher percentage of his passes and threw for 320 yards.
But where Bortles may have won the quantity battle, it was all about quality for Rodgers.
Playing behind a line that may (after the surprising release of Josh Sitton just before the season) actually be worse than last year’s (a unit that surrendered 47 sacks), Rodgers extended plays with his legs all afternoon:
Aaron Rodgers avoiding defenders today like https://t.co/eSSja4RbHM
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 11, 2016
We’ll call that an, um, dramatic re-creation.
On no play was Rodgers’ day of making something from nothing more evident than his second touchdown pass. It was a ridiculous play where the only thing better than Davante Adams’ catch was Rodgers somehow delivering a perfect throw despite the fact that the Jaguars had him dead to rights…
Aaron Rodgers is unstoppable.It’s that simple.#GBvsJAX https://t.co/KI1rGSLUvG
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) September 11, 2016
I’m guessing we’re going to be seeing that play a bit on the highlight shows.
That wasn’t Rodgers’ first score of the day, which was a six-yard scamper …