With Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams uniting to post the same “last dance” picture to Instagram, it appears their mindset is the 2021 NFL season will be their last run with the Green Bay Packers. However, The Last Dance featured the Chicago Bulls winning the title. After two failed NFC Championship trips, the Packers have done little to nothing to improve upon last year’s team.
So, in order for the Packers to win the Super Bowl and live up to the goals of both Rodgers and Adams, one would assume last season’s MVP will need to play even better. But is this even realistic?
Can Aaron Rodgers Outperform His 2020 MVP Season?
2020 Aaron Rodgers Stats
The 2020 NFL season was a unique one for many reasons. However, one of the players to capitalize on this was Aaron Rodgers, who put up some of the best stats of his terrific career.
Completion Rate: 70.7%*
TD Rate: 9.1%*
Passer Rating: 121.5*
*Led the NFL
On top of this, his third-leading receiver was an undrafted tight end that entered the season with 14 career receptions. Rodgers led the league’s top-scoring team (31.5) and league’s most efficient scoring red zone offense (76.81%). It may not be surprising to know the Packers offense had possession the most in the NFL (54.75%). Simply put, the Packers offense dominated in 2020, and there’s no doubt who is most to credit.
Did Rodgers Have the Advantage in 2020?
The 2020 season presented many obstacles for teams and fans alike. But while the typical day-to-day may have been less enjoyable, it appeared the COVID protocols gave Aaron Rodgers an advantage.
First, teams were practicing less. This gave Rodgers an advantage for multiple reasons. First, he discussed on The Pat McAfee Show how he felt physically better than he ever had, due to less reps and strain on his body in the offseason. Second, the Packers were essentially running it back with the same team, due to Brian Gutekunst not making any changes. The Packers already had chemistry built, while other teams were struggling to do the same in their virtual practices, for obvious reasons.
The second advantage for Rodgers was a massive one for multiple veteran quarterbacks. Not having fans in stadiums led to no home-field advantage. This isn’t an opinion; the numbers back it up. Along with this, the silence during games not only let Rodgers communicate with his offense for effectively, it allowed him to hear the defense talking to each other as well. Again, Rodgers spoke about this early in the season on Pat McAfee’s show. This allowed Rodgers to pick apart defenses even easier than in a typical season.
Can Aaron Rodgers Improve in 2021?
It’s unfair to ask even the most talented quarterback in the NFL to improve upon a historic season. However, for Aaron Rodgers to end his Green Bay Packers era with a Super Bowl, that is exactly what needs to happen. He will not get the luxury of having one of the most cohesive teams among the contenders this season. Coaching changes, along with rookies playing vital roles on both sides of the ball, could be a high hurdle early in the season. The fans will also be back, eliminating the game advantage for veteran quarterbacks.
However, 2021 is what I am now calling the Aaron Rodgers F U Tour. Whether there has been a good reason or not, Rodgers has always carried a chip on his shoulder. He also has continually bet on himself and won. Last season, the Packers drafted Jordan Love, essentially betting against Rodgers following a poor season, to his standards. With a chip on his shoulder, he won MVP. This season, with the general manager and team president are making it known that Love is the 2022 plan at quarterback, so how do you think Rodgers responds?
Make no mistake, Aaron Rodgers loves the Green Bay Packers and the state of Wisconsin. He loves his teammates and coaches. We know this since he has actually said it. Rodgers doesn’t like Brian Gutekunst, and who could blame him? This is Rodgers’ “last dance” in Green Bay, and he absolutely has the mental strength, pettiness, talent, etc. to outperform last season. However, with the new obstacles around him, which includes a worse pass protection and a defensive coordinator that has an IQ less than the number Rodgers wears on his back, it’s not a bet I am willing to make. But we know what happens when people bet against Aaron Rodgers.