Green Bay Packers: The Next Team of the Decade

Adam LufranoCorrespondent IIIFebruary 18, 2010

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 31:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the NFC's Green Bay Packers scrambles out of the pocket during the 2010 AFC-NFC Pro Bowl game at Sun Life Stadium on January 31, 2010 in Miami Gardens, Florida. The AFC defeated the NFC 41-34. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Looking back at the past teams of the decade—the Steelers, 49ers, Patriots—it seems you need to have a few criteria to really have a chance to become the team of the next decade.

You need an elite quarterback. He obviously also needs to have a solid amount of years left in him so he can lead his team to multiple Super Bowl runs. To be the Team of the Decade you need to win multiple titles, more than likely three or more.

You need to be relatively young at the start of the decade. If you have a load of talented football players at the dawn of the new decade, that's the first step. But if there all nearing the end of their careers, what use do they do for the new decade? You need a young core so you can contend and win the Super Bowl multiple times in the same ten-year period.

You need a defense. I didn't say elite, strong, or talented defense. You just need a unit that can defend opposing offenses. That's what a defense is suppose to do, and yet some defenses can't stop offenses consistently. Even if the defense is considered elite because it makes consistent stops, I will leave it out. You just need a defense.

So, based on these criteria, there's one NFL Franchise that really stands out to me as the possible next Team of the Decade.

The Green Bay Packers.

The Packers are the most likely team to win multiple championships over the next ten year span. And there are many good reasons why.

For starters, they have a defense. They made the change from a 4-3 to a 3-4 this past year, and it worked out very well for them. They finished second in the league in total defense to go with No. 1 in rushing defense.

While I do think these rankings are helped greatly by dominating the weak offenses on their schedule, the Packers still had a good defense last year. Also, I don't want to hear about the Steelers game and the playoff loss. Our defensive secondary had a lot of players injured, and to make it worse Bigby got injured during the playoff game, too. What those teams did was destroy a depleted defense. As long as this defense stays healthy and improves through draft, trade, and free agency there's no ceiling.

They also have an elite quarterback. For the sake of argument, I would like to state that I do not think Aaron Rodgers can be appropriately titled an elite quarterback as of right now, but it is in my opinion that he is one of the best QB in the NFL. So while he may not be elite now, I think he will be very soon.

With Aaron Rodgers being only 26, the Packers franchise looks to be in good hands for a long time as long as this guy can stay healthy. As of right now, Aaron Rodgers has the highest QB rating of all-time to go along with the lowest interception percentage in league history. Obviously he will have to continue to play at a high level to maintain those rankings, but they're still impressive nonetheless.

Finally, there young. Very young. They've been the youngest team in the league three out of the last four years. This is very good because their core is young and talented, so they have room to grow and time to do it in. And since they have plenty of good years of football in them, even if they fall short of the championship one year, they can always contend for it they year after.

On offense this Packer team is loaded with young studs, with the aforementioned Aaron Rodgers being the most important. After him you have Jermichael Finley, Greg Jennings, Josh Sitton, TJ Lang, James Jones, and Ryan Grant (he's actually not too young for a RB). It is my opinion that Jermichael Finley will be considered the BEST tight end in the NFL not too long into the future, and he's only 22.

On defense they also have a young core which is very talented. You have Clay Matthews, BJ Raji, Tramon Williams, and Nick Collins. Two of these players are already Pro Bowlers, and I believe the other two can be Pro Bowl players as well.

Last years Defensive Player Of The Year award winner, Charles Woodson, is not done yet. He is 33 but he still can play at a high level. He is a freak and will probably remain a force in the secondary up until he's 35 or 36. He's hungry for a Super Bowl ring, so you got to think he'll just get hungrier every year he falls short.

In conclusion, don't underestimate the Green Bay Packers. To all the people who think the Atlanta Falcons, New York Jets, Baltimore Ravens, or New Orleans Saints have a better chance to win more Super Bowls than Green Bay in the next decade, you'll be sad when you see Aaron Rodgers get his fourth ring at the end of the 2018 season.