Rodgers has thrown 24 touchdowns to one interception since Nov. 13 and has a 117.9 passer rating in the past eight games. Two months ago, analysts picked apart his fundamentals in numerous “What’s wrong with Aaron Rodgers?” pieces. Their thoughts? His mechanics were messed up. In mid-October, Rodgers was the 26th-rated passer in the NFL.
“At 4-6, he was still the same player,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “We weren’t playing good, and sometimes he didn’t do quite as good as he normally does.”
Yes, two months can change careers and legacies. On Nov. 20, Packers fans were calling for McCarthy’s head. The team plane arrived back in Green Bay sometime around 2 a.m., and the coach drove to his office and set up for the day’s work.
His depth chart might as well have been written in pencil. The defense, which had given up 153 points in the four-game skid, was decimated by injury; the running game was down to Ty Montgomery, a receiver converted to a running back. McCarthy’s family hears the brunt of it when things are bad, and by late November, his mother started lighting more church candles.
When McCarthy heard what Rodgers said that night after the loss at Washington, that he was confident things would turn around, the coach loved it. It was exactly how he felt.
They’d soon get some key players back, and both Rodgers and McCarthy thought that if the team could hang on and get a shot of confidence, the Packers would be OK.
The Cowboys’ rookie quarterback threw for 302 yards and three touchdowns. The Packers managed to pick off Prescott once, a key takeaway by defensive back Micah Hyde that saved at least three points and possibly seven, but Ryan isn’t exactly turnover-prone. He threw only seven interceptions all season and hasn’t thrown one during the Falcons’ five-game winning streak.