Green Bay Packers Are Out: 10 Reasons Why They Won't Make The Playoffs In 2011
The Green Bay Packers had an amazing year.
They were clearly the best team in the league and deserved everything they achieved.
But something tells me that won't last.
Aaron Rodgers had one of the better playoff performances from the QB position and James Starks really came through for them when they needed him most.
But this team isn't built for repeat success. They were a one-year wonder, and here are 10 reasons why.
Aaron Rodgers Can't Stay Healthy
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Aaron Rodgers has a history of devastating injuries. Before the 2008 season, many fans were questioning Rodgers' ability to stay healthy, and Rodgers has done nothing to counter those worries.
In 2008, Rodgers suffered a severe shoulder injury in a loss to Tampa Bay. Granted, he didn't miss any playing time, but you could see he was in obvious pain and he was costing his team wins. Green Bay went 6-10 in 2008.
In 2009, Rodgers admitted he almost got hurt in one of the Bears games on a two-point conversion attempt. That was a close call and if Rodgers had gotten hurt, the Packers might not have made it to OT in the Cardinals' playoff loss.
In 2010, Rodgers suffered not one, but two concussions and had to sit out a Week 15 game at New England. Missing that game was unacceptable, and Rodgers has to know better that he can't get hurt before a big game like that.
His lack of awareness is troubling for this Packers team trying to repeat.
Brett Swain Isn't As Good As Randy Moss
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Brett Swain just hasn't had the career that Randy has had.
How many times have you seen Moss get a TD? A lot, right?
How many times has Swain gotten into the end zone? Not so much.
For the Packers to make the playoffs, Swain is going to have to show that big-play potential we got a glimpse of in the Week 12 loss to Atlanta.
Unfortunately for the Pack, Swain isn't going to get it done next year and the Packers will lose some tight games because of key drops by Brett.
Swain had the potential to be the next Packer legend if he would have gotten a catch in the Super Bowl last Sunday. Because of Brett's inconsistencies, though, look for him to be just another solid Packer wide out.
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Jermichael Finley used to be the best tight end in the NFL, but injury issues have slowed him down quite a bit.
Finley is projected to be back at full strength next season, but how much of that do you believe? He has proven he can't stay healthy, so how aggressive do you think he's going to be next season going over the middle?
His surgery has gone over well and he is in fine shape, but there is no way he returns to the form he was last year, and that's a shame. He had a lot of potential, but his days as an NFL icon are over.
Look for 21 catches, the number he had last year.
John Kuhn Is Not an Elite Back
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John Kuhn was forced into the starting role at RB last season when Ryan Grant went down with an injury.
He didn't do too well.
Kuhn was the main reason why the Packers' running game was miserable all year. A championship team needs a solid running game, and the Packers lack one.
John Kuhn had a whopping zero yards in the Super Bowl. Performances like those are not going to win your team games.
The Packers need to get a running back if they want to make the playoffs next year. If you consider Ted Thompson has already shown he will not go out and get a RB, then you know the Pack will have to stick with Kuhn.
Unfortunately, John Kuhn just won't be able to carry the load.
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The Lions will win the NFC Central next season because of...Brett Favre.
How many times have you heard Favre say he's going to retire and then change his mind? At least 20 times so far, so why not 21?
Brett Favre will sign a one-year deal with the Lions one week before the season starts and he will win the NFL MVP award for the fourth time while leading the Lions to a 13-3 record.
Crazier things have happened before.
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The Packers finished 10-6 this season, the same record as the New York Giants.
But, the Giants were without one of their best players, Plaxico Burress.
If Burress had been with the team, they would have easily gone 12-4 and Burress would have made Eli Manning an MVP candidate.
And don't forget about those Buccaneers, who also went 10-6.
With the Lions easily taking the NFC Central and the Giants getting Burress back this offseason, look for the Packers and Buccaneers to be fighting for a Wild Card spot next season.
Since Josh Freeman has not shown to have any injury problems, look for Tampa Bay to have an early edge.
Brandon Chillar and Brady Poppinga's Injury Problems
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The Packers got lucky this year.
They overcame two devastating blows to their linebacking corps in the likes of Brandon Chillar and Brady Poppinga both landing on IR.
They are two of the best linebackers the league has to offer, and the Packers are going to be hard pressed to find another way to win next season if they go down again.
Considering they both went down last year, it's almost a certainty they will land on IR once again.
This time, the Packers wont be so lucky, and the lack of the two playmakers will leave them with heartbreaking loss after heartbreaking loss.
Jordy Nelson has a son and is happily married.
But maybe he's too happy.
It is a proven fact that when players have girlfriends, they become distracted and their performance goes down. Look no further than Tony Romo.
While Nelson doesn't have a girlfriend (married), the same principle will apply.
Nelson will not become the next Packer legend for he will be so distracted by Emily in the stands that he will drop every pass thrown his way next year.
The Packers will get so frustrated that they will have no choice but to throw to Greg Jennings, or even James Jones, who has shown he doesn't have the best hands himself.
Aaron Rodgers Went To Disney World
Aaron Rodgers made a huge mistake mere hours after winning Super Bowl XLV.
What was it, you might ask?
He went to Disney World.
There are 31 NFL teams besides the Packers and they all have one goal for 2011: Knock off the Packers and win the Super Bowl.
All of those 31 teams are preparing for next season and game planning for the Packers.
Aaron Rodgers is at Disney World.
There is no way Rodgers will be prepared for the rest of league by the start of next year because he has let the rest of the NFL get a big head start.
Going on David Letterman's show didn't help much, either.
They Already Got Theirs
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The Packers defied all the odds and won the Super Bowl.
They were a team of destiny and they earned all the 14 wins they got.
But next season a different team will be the 2010 Packers.
A different team will have the odds stacked against them. A different team will have injury issues, early heart breaking losses, tough calls going against them, and controversies brewing.
That team will get the last laugh, though.
The Packers got theirs.
Now its someone else's turn.