Breaking Down How Aaron Rodgers Can Bounce Back from Slow Start

Nick KostoraContributor IIISeptember 17, 2012

GREEN BAY, WI - SEPTEMBER 09:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers warms up before the NFL season opener against the San Francisco 49ers at Lambeau Field on September 9, 2012 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Fear not, Green Bay Packers fans, Aaron Rodgers can easily bounce back from his sluggish start to the season.

Playing the defenses of the San Francisco 49ers and Chicago Bears is a tough way for any quarterback to start a season, even the reigning MVP.

Still, Rodgers and the Packers emerged from these two collisions with a 1-1 record and plenty of reason for optimism moving forward.

How can Green Bay and Rodgers bounce back from a somewhat sluggish start?

Let's break down the factors that will lead to improved play out of No. 12.


Embrace Variety

Rodgers is the rare NFL quarterback that can take pedestrian receiving options and catapult them into relevant status.

Much like Drew Brees, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, Rodgers is at his best when he is throwing to a plethora of targets and keeping defenses as spread out as possible.

We saw this in Week 2 against the Bears. Rodgers completed passes to eight different receivers and no player had more than six catches.

Contrarily, in Week 1 Rodgers hit a mere five targets.

Combining a wide variety of receiving options with the improved running back presence of Cedric Benson will provide the type of balance this offense needs to find continued success this season.


Complete Longer Passes

In 2009 Rodgers averaged 8.20 yards per completion. He then averaged 8.26 in 2010 and 9.25 in 2011.

So far in 2012 that number has seen a drastic drop all the way down to 6.87 yards per completion.

Rodgers needs to go back to where he has found success in the past, longer throws. With speedy weapons like Randall Cobb, James Jones and Greg Jennings, this should not be much of a problem.

Green Bay's offense may have simply fallen victim to tough defensive units in its first two weeks that did a good job of keeping everything in front of it.

However, the Packers have too much firepower not to try and exploit vulnerabilities in defenses moving forward. Rodgers has the accuracy and playmakers around him to take more chances than he has so far in the young season.


Beat Up on the Seahawks

There is perhaps no better way to reverse a sluggish start to a season than to have a huge showing on Monday Night Football.

Green Bay will be awarded just that opportunity in Week 3 against the Seattle Seahawks.

And while the Rodgers vs. Matt Flynn storyline has fallen by the wayside, this is still a great chance for the Packers to show they are still the high-powered offense of 2011, and maybe even better.

By dominating the Seahawks on MNF, Green Bay will build a tremendous amount of momentum heading into a tricky part of its schedule and instill confidence in the offense.


Outlook For the Season

After two weeks, Rodgers has not been on the same torrid pace he set from a year ago, but he has still been a high quality quarterback.

It is only a matter of time before he returns to slinging the ball for 400 yards and four touchdowns a game.

Until then, fans need to be patient as the Packers look to develop a proper Benson-led rushing attack.

There is nothing wrong with Green Bay's passing game; it is simply evolving.