Debunking the Biggest Myths About the Green Bay Packers in 2012
The Green Bay Packers enter training camp with the goal of overcoming last season's playoff flame-out and get back to the Super Bowl. As one of the most talented teams in the league and home to the NFL's MVP, there is certainly plenty of media attention surrounding the Packers. While some things are accurate, others are far from the truth.
The Packers Need a Better Running Game to Win It All
Last season the Packers offense broke all types of franchise records including points, yardage and touchdowns scored. They did this all while their running backs struggled to get going and be consistently productive. Part of this was the Packers lack of running, but why run the ball when it could in the hands of the NFL MVP instead.
It was touted as a weakness all season long, but the Packers won 15 games. The Packers don't need to run the ball to be successful. Rodgers' precision on short passes allow the Packers to use slants, screens and quick outs to receivers in place of handing the ball off.
Getting the ball into the wide receivers hands quickly in space, the Packers' worst case scenario with Rodgers' ability to take care of the football is an incompletion.
More often than not, the passes are completed and put the Packers in favorable downs and distances.
Defense Was One of Worst in the League
Yes, the Packers gave up a ton of yards last season, but the defense was far from the worst in the league. They weren't good, that's for sure, but they came up with the second-most turnovers in the league.
When it came down to it, the Packers offense was able to overcome the defensive deficiencies. The loss in Kansas City was a terrible offensive performance. The defense didn't play well, but it wasn't the unit's worst outing. Against the New York Giants in the playoffs, the defense could have been much better, but the defense was not the sole reason for the loss.
The Packers defense is capable of being much better next season with better health and an influx of new talent. An improved pass rush will do wonders for the Packers D. The points per game and yardage should go down, while turnovers remain around the same level. The yardage totals are still likely to be higher than most based on the fact teams will likely be playing a lot of catch-up or garbage time ball against the Packers in 2012.
Donald Driver Is Too Old to Contribute
After last season, many people speculated that Donald Driver had reached the end of his Packers career. Driver restructured his contract this offseason to play for less money in 2012 and ensure his spot on the Packers roster.
Simply being on the roster isn't what Driver has in mind. He wants to play often and play well. Yesterday in camp, Driver made that known as he caught three touchdown passes in team drills and made rookie Casey Hayward look silly.
While Driver will have to compete with Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Jermichael Finley, James Jones and Randall Cobb for opportunities, there will certainly be plenty of times Packers fans see No. 80 doing his first-down shimmy.
Aaron Rodgers Is a System QB
After Matt Flynn went crazy against the Detroit Lions with a superb performance, chatter began and Rodgers' was being labeled a "system quarterback." Surely it was the Packers' offense and receivers that made it possible for Rodgers to do the damage he did last season. If Flynn could it, anybody thrown in there could.
While Flynn's game was special, Rodgers' season was on another level. Watching Rodgers in camps, preseason and throughout the year, you can tell there's something special about him. From his athletic ability to his supreme confidence to his detailed preparation.
There is no question that Rodgers benefits from a good coaching staff and talented receivers around him, but since when is that a flaw?