In-depth breakdown of how good Aaron Rodgers must be for Packers to win

Aaron Rodgers. Image by Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

In-depth breakdown of how good Aaron Rodgers must be for Packers to win

By Wayne Larrivee. CREATED Oct 3, 2013

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers MUST play well for the Packers to have a good chance of winning the game!

That’s the kind of hard hitting, in-depth analysis you’ve come to expect from this blog!  Folks you don’t get this kind of stuff up and down the dial.

Obviously I’m kidding—I make obvious statements all the time.
But really, the numbers do point out what we have all witnessed over the past five-plus years since ARod took over the starting quarterback position in Green Bay. 

What’s incredible about Rodgers is the fact that his passer rating has been over 100 (which is outstanding) in 48 career starts!
When Aaron has a passer rating over 100, the Packers are 39-9.

When his rating dips below 100, they go 14-19.  When his rating is below 90, the Packers are 9-17.
In 2008, Rodgers first as a starter, the Packers went 6-10. 

When his passer rating was over 100, Green Bay won 6 of 8 games. 

They were 0-8 when he was below 100.

In 2009, the Packers went 4-2 when Rodgers was sub 100 and 7-3 when he posted a plus 100-passer rating.
In the Super Season of 2010, the Packers were a solid 4-3 when Rodgers passer rating was under 100. 

That season they won a game at Philly when ARod had a 73.1 rating and another in the Meadowlands over the Jets when Rodgers posted a 59.7 number.

As you recall so often, the defense had to close the deal many times, including the final game of the regular season when the Packers beat the Bears 10-3 just to get into the post season.  Rodgers had a passer rating of 89.7 that day.

That year the Packers defense ranked 2nd in points allowed, 5th in yardage, 11th against the rush and 5th against the pass.
Since 2010, it is safe to say the defense has not been as good and not nearly as capable of winning games in which Rodgers (and the offense) does not have an extraordinary day (passer rating 100-plus). 

In 2011, the Packers went 15-1 despite a defense that fell off sharply from the previous season. That’s because Rodgers had the greatest single season ever posted by a quarterback in NFL history.

He posted 13 games with a passer rating above 100, 6 of those performances were over 120, and 4 topped 140!

His passer rating for the season was 122.5 best of all time!

But when he was not over 100, the Packers went 1-1, beating Oakland when he posted a very, very good 96.7 mark and losing at Kansas City when he posted a decent 80.1 rating.

In the post-season game, his passer rating was 78.5 and the Packers lost to the Giants in Lambeau Field.

Last year, Rodgers posted 8 games with a passer rating of plus-100 and the Packers went 6-2.

Under 100 and they were 5-3 an improved defense certainly helped.
Let’s go one level lower.

Since 2008, Rodgers has had just 10 starts where his passer rating dipped under 80.

That includes the game at Detroit in 2010 when he was knocked out in the first half.

The Packers have gone 2-8 in those games.
So yes, Rodgers had better play well (passer rating above 80) for the Packers to have a good chance of winning.

But again, this is nothing earth shattering, in this day and age in the NFL.

The quarterback is the biggest determining factor between winning and losing for every team that’s why they get the big bucks!

That’s why this is a quarterback league.


The biggest difference between the Packers and the Lions over the course of the last five seasons has been at the quarterback position.

In his career against the Lions, Rodgers is 8-1 completing 68.5% of his passes for an average of 254 yards a game with 18 TD passes and just 5 interceptions.

He has posted a career passer rating of 111.4 against Detroit.

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford is one of the top young “gunslingers” in the game today, but against Green Bay he is 0-5, completing 57% of his passes for 308 yards a game with 9 touchdown passes and 12 interceptions.

His passer rating against the Packers is 68.8.

Throw in Calvin “The Great” Johnson, for my money the most dominant wide receiver in pro football today, and in 11 career games against the Packers he has gone 1-10. 

His numbers are prodigious, 65 receptions, 1,062 yards, 11 TD receptions!

The Packers can and have afforded the Lions stars (Stafford and Johnson) to do their thing in the past and they have not hurt them.

But you want to know why the Lions believe they have a good chance of winning on Wisconsin soil for the first time in 22 years?

I’ve got one name for you — Reggie Bush. 

He gives Detroit a threat out of the backfield they haven’t had since Barry Sanders.  But that’s a story for another day and another blog.