Tag:Aaron Rodgers
Posted on: February 18, 2011 11:16 pm
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Woodson on Favre calling Rodgers: 'Why now?'

Posted by Will Brinson

Even though he seems to be all but gone from the game of football, Brett Favre simply won't disappear from the spotlight.

There's a somewhat logical, albeit still annoying, reason why he won't leave: he's got to get the Packers to forgive him. And, to some degree, the world feels like he needs to interact with newly-crownedbelted World Champion Aaron Rodgers.

However, it's still odd, that he just HAS to talk to with Rodgers, right? Charles Woodson, speaking on Jim Rome Is Burning Friday, agreed.  

"This deal with Brett, I’m not sure what that's all about," Woodson said. "I know he’s had numerous opportunities to reach out. Why now? I don't know. But for A-Rod, he doesn't have to do anything. He's a champion, he needs to enjoy this moment and not even worry about all that."

As you might recall, an anonymous Packer recently told our own Mike Freeman that he's not sure Rodgers would even answer the call if Favre rang him up (presumably, ahem, he wouldn't text).

Woodson addressed that as well.

"I don't know the extent of what their relationship was," Woodson said. "If Brett called him, he'd probably take the call. What's said? I don’t know."

Rodgers would take the call -- that seems like a given with the way he's handled his entire professional career. He might not be happy about having to chat with Brett, and he might think that No. 4 was being completely disingenuous, but he'd take the call.

And then he'd probably politely tell reporters that he talked to Brett and things went "really well and he appreciated the call," or some generic phrase like that to mask any resentment he might harbor.

And then maybe -- just MAYBE -- we could move on from the issue. Because no one's enjoying the drawn-out moment, at least right now.

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Posted on: February 13, 2011 1:15 pm
Edited on: February 13, 2011 1:25 pm
 

Packers' Flynn drawing a lot of trade interest?

Posted by Will Brinson

There are three names -- Kevin Kolb, Donovan McNabb, Vince Young -- that really stand out when discussing free agent or trade options for teams in need of a quarterback. But it might be time to add a fourth: Matt Flynn.

The Packers backup quarterback, who nearly took down the Patriots in their Week 15 Sunday night primetime matchup, is drawing a lot of attention from other teams, according to Dan Pompei of the National Football Post.

Pompei cites Green Bay sources who believe Flynn is "ready to start" -- the obstacle to that is, clearly, Aaron Rodgers.

Green Bay doesn't likely want to get rid of Flynn, but he's "developed consistently" under Mike McCarthy and the current Packers coaching staff, and it's hard to imagine that his value will get too much higher than it is right now.

Because there are so many quarterback-needy teams -- Carolina, Washington, Minnesota, Seattle, San Francisco, Arizona, Miami and Tennessee all fall under the "immediately desperate" category -- the Packers stand a good chance of getting a high draft pick in exchange for their backup. 

Pompei believes it's possible for Green Bay to pull a second-rounder, and that seems like pretty fair market value. Although if that's the case, you can probably rule Carolina, Washington and Minnesota out of the running -- the Panthers don't have a second-rounder, the 'Skins just traded a second-rounder for a QB last year and the Vikings are in the same division. 

But if one of those other teams really wants a quarterback right now, and they see the draft as the only opportunity, a second-rounder for a young, ready-to-start QB like Flynn might seem like pretty good value, as opposed to reaching for a project like Ryan Mallett or Jake Locker. Especially when you consider what Washington paid for McNabb last year.

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Posted on: February 10, 2011 11:49 am
 

Hot Routes 2.10.11: Panthers the new Chargers?

Posted by Will Brinson



Got a link for the Hot Routes? Hit us up on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL).
  • Doug Farrar of Yahoo! Sports is whipping through a Top-40 list of NFL Draft prospects. Ryan Mallett (who checks in at No. 37) is at one point called a "statue with a cannon attached," if that makes you feel good about your team maybe drafting him. It shouldn't.
Posted on: February 8, 2011 10:40 am
 

Rodgers visits Dave, shows off wrestling belt

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Last night, Super Bowl MVP Aaron Rodgers made an appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman (#onCBS, y’all), and he was pretty good. Like he was all of last week, Rodgers was cool and calm, and he made a couple jokes that drew some laughs. Nothing too outlandish, but a workmanlike performance.

Rodgers is not necessarily Mr. Personality Plus – though he seems extremely comfortable in his own skin – but he seems like a good, solid dude, one that Packers fans should be proud to call their own.

Here’s the video:



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Category: NFL
Posted on: February 7, 2011 11:50 pm
 

McCarthy wants current job to be his last

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Packers coach Mike McCarthy has two years left on his current contract, but it seems slightly possible that an extension might be coming his way. He didn’t want to talk about an extension during the season, and now that the season is finished, the Green Bay’s front office likely is gearing up to throw rather large sacks of money at McCarthy.

“I would hope this is my last job,” he said today during his post Super Bowl winning news conference. “I’m a builder and we have built something special. This program was built the right way, has quality people in Aaron Rodgers, and all the way through that are going to lead this football team for a long time.

“So I would definitely hope this is my last job.”

So, he would be interested in an extension, then?

Said McCarthy to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “I’d listen to them.”

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Posted on: February 7, 2011 5:54 pm
 

Hot Routes 02.07.11: Where Vegas got hammered

Posted by Will Brinson



Got a link for the Hot Routes? Hit us up on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL).
  • So, as it turns out, the bookies aren't so smart after all. Okay, they're smart, but they're not perfect -- having Green Bay as a 2.5-poing favorite (or 3-point fave at kickoff depending on where you went) ended up torching them, as America laid tons of money on the Packers. At one point, Jay Rood, the guy runs the MGM's sportsbook, took a call from his boss who asked "What's the worst-case scenario?" Rood answered: "It's happening."
Posted on: February 7, 2011 12:41 am
Edited on: February 7, 2011 12:43 am
 

Packers WRs fight back after drops (VIDEO)

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

DALLAS – The drops were beginning to frustrate Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, and they were really beginning to annoy WR Greg Jennings.

Over and over again, Green Bay’s receivers dropped very makeable catches from Rodgers, stalling drives and killing momentum. Jordy Nelson (nine catches, 140 yards, one touchdown) had a fantastic night, but he dropped a few. James Jones (five catches, 50 yards) recovered pretty well, but he flubbed a potential touchdown catch. Brett Swain blew one as well that bounced off his hands and his legs before it hurt the turf.

Jennings wanted to say something, but he knew he couldn’t harp on the negative – on the, “What the hell are you guys doing out there” aspect. Still, receivers coach Jimmy Robinson urged his No. 1 guy to say something, especially with team leader Donald Driver out for the game.

“As one of the head guys, you understand that guys sometimes have to pull themselves out of the hole,” Jennings said. “When you have a drop, you have to be able to bounce back. All I said was, ‘We have to be great. Period. We have to be great. We can’t afford to have that in a game of this magnitude.’ The guys responded and we made the plays down the stretch. Ultimately, we got the job done.”

For much of the second half, though, the receivers were shaky. And on the Packers first drive of the fourth quarter, the carelessness struck again. With the Packers leading by four, Rodgers faced a third-and-seven after Nelson dropped another pass. But with the Packers desperately needing to continue the drive and put points on the board, Rodgers zipped a throw to Nelson.

Nelson easily made the catch, gaining 38 yards, and the Packers eventually scored a touchdown to take an 11-point lead.

“I can say for Jordy on that drive, for him to make a play on the very next play after he dropped one, it erases that drop out of your mind,” Jennings said. “When you can do things like that, it makes the game a lot easier even though you just made the ultimate boo-boo in our profession.”

The Packers prevailed without their emotional leader, as Driver – who injured his ankle in the first half and never returned – watched the second half from the sidelines. Without Driver, the Packers needed some kind of spark to kick-start an offense that failed to gain a first down in the third quarter.

Jennings helped provide it by fooling Steelers S Troy Polamalu.

After the Steelers cut the lead to four points in the third quarter, Green Bay’s defense forced a fumble from Pittsburgh RB Rashard Mendenhall, and after driving deep into Steelers territory, Jennings found himself running toward Polamalu, who was playing in a Cover-2.

Two weeks ago, while playing the Bears in the NFC championship game, Jennings cut inside against that defensive scheme and continued on his post route. That played worked a few times against Chicago, but against Pittsburgh, Jennings tried something different, cutting outside on a corner route and catching a wide-open touchdown pass.

“They were definitely playing for the post,” Jenning said. “We had gashed Chicago a couple times, and I’m sure they saw that in their film preparation where if they show a Cover-2 look, I’m going to be bend it into the post. But we kept the corner route on, and I was able to get behind him. (Polamalu) just dropped me. He completely dropped me.”

As a result, the Packers dropped the Steelers. And, at the same time, alleviated some of the annoyances created by a couple wide receiver drops.

“I,” said Rodgers with a laugh, “am not frustrated any more.”

Below is video of Jennings discussing his 31-yard catch on third-and-10 on the Packers final fourth-quarter drive.




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Posted on: February 6, 2011 10:51 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2011 11:30 pm
 

Five keys from Super Bowl XLV

Posted by Andy Benoit

1. Rodgers making the most of his time

We speculated before the game that Dick LeBeau would elect to drop back and play coverage against Aaron Rodgers. After all, when the Steelers blitzed Rodgers in the 2009 regular season matchup, they got tA. Rodgers (US Presswire)orched for 36 points.

Well, that speculation was prescient. Just as he did in the Super Bowl two years ago, LeBeau often kept safety Troy Polamalu in deep coverage. LeBeau’s bet was that outside linebackers James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley could abuse Green Bay’s edge pass-blockers. But with the exception of one James Harrison sack, that was not the case. Give a world of credit to Chad Clifton and Bryan Bulaga.

Polamalu played closer to the line of scrimmage in the second (including as a slot corner), but that did not disrupt Rodgers’ rhythm. As has been the case all postseason, Rodgers was terrific in his presnap diagnostics. And with solid protection, he was able to buy time in the pocket and work through his progressions. His poise allowed him to finish 24 of 39 (with six drops, no less) for 304 yards and three touchdowns.

2. Effective running

The Packers did not make the run a staple of their offensive gameplan (again, no surprise – they were facing the third best run defense in NFL history), but they made the absolute most of the rushing attempts they did have. James Starks finished with 52 yards, 37 of them coming in the first half. He had crucial gains of 8 yards, 7 yards, 12 yards and, most notably, in the fourth quarter, 14 yards.
 
The common thread on all these plays was that Green Bay attacked running. The Packers knew they didn’t have the oxen to move nose tackle Casey Hampton, so they attacked the edges. Brilliantly, they used slow developing runs to do this. This caused the aggressiveness of the outside linebackers to work against the Steelers. It probably wouldn’t have worked if Polamalu had lined up in the box.

3. The mismatch

For the past two years, the weak link of the Steelers’ secondary has been cornerback William Gay. The Packers sought out Gay early and often Sunday. Jordy Nelson beat him on a fade route on the opening touchdown (this would be a harbinger for the rest of the game, as Nelson finished with nine catches for 140 yards and was targeted 15 times). When Gay lined up inside, the Packers were able to exploit him with crossing patterns.

To be fair, Gay was not the only Steelers defensive back who struggled. Troy Polamalu took a few bad angles in coverage (including in the red zone) and Ike Taylor gave up a crucial 31-yard completion on third-and-10 to Greg Jennings in the fourth quarter.

4. Packers front seven (or eight) stepped up

The Packers were without athletic outside linebacker Erik Walden (high ankle sprain) this game. But replacement Frank Zombo stepped up big. He took on blocks extremely well and – for the most part – held the edge against the run. He also sacked Ben Roethlisberger in the third quarter.

A bigger injury was the loss of roving defensive back Charles Woodson. His absence was felt when Pittsburgh came out and completed crossing patterns passes and moved the chains on off-tackle runs early in the third quarter. Dom Capers was tempted to get conservative and utilize more traditional 3-4 fronts, but ultimately he tapped Jarrett Bush to play the joker role and stuck with the 2-4-5 that, all season long, has brought Green Bay magnificent success. Bush responded well (the design of the scheme gave him a clear pass-rushing lane or two) and the Packers defense avoided sliding down the sliJ. Bush (US Presswire)ppery slope they had found themselves on.

5. Pass-rush forced turnovers

Roethlisberger’s two first half interceptions that led to 14 Packers points were the product of bad decisions by the quarterback. But those bad decisions were the product of pass-rush pressure. Massive defensive lineman Howard Green ran into Roethlisberger on the first interception (the Nick Collins pick six). On the second pick, Roethlisberger felt his pocket collapsing and, uncharacteristically, floated the ball around A.J. Hawk and into double coverage.

Clay Matthews did not have a dominant game, but he got inside the Steelers’ heads somewhat by delaying his blitzes. Capers had Matthews line up as a quasi-inside linebacker early on. It looked like Matthews was spying Roethlisberger, but you don’t spy a non-Michael Vick quarterback with your superstar pass-rusher. Really what Matthews was doing was waiting for the Steelers offensive line to commit itself to a pass protection maneuver, then attacking. It was a shrewd concept given that the Steelers have struggled with pass protection communication at times this season, and given that they were without center Maurkice Pouncey.

Pass-rush pressure is about more than sacks. Green Bay’s front seven attacks disrupted the Steelers in subtle but costly ways.

[More Super Bowl coverage]

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com