Green Bay Packers, NFL Top 5 Story Lines (Thus Far)

Mark OristanoContributor IIDecember 9, 2011

Green Bay Packers, NFL Top 5 Story Lines (Thus Far)

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    As we approach the end of the regular season (didn't the lockout just end?), it's never too early to look back and relish some of the year's best story lines.  Even though we've still got four weeks to go, there have been some amazing stories to come out of the work-stoppage-impaired 2011 season.  

    There's no telling what the top five story list will look like when the dust settles in Indy next February, but it's surely worth an early look. 

Green Bay Goes for Perfection

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    How do you follow up on a  championship season?  You come back even stronger the next year.  With a perfect season. It's been almost a year since the Packers lost a game that meant anything.

    You take it down from the top....general manager Ted Thompson, coach mike McCarthy, QB Aaron Rodgers... It's an amazing season for a team which refused to rest on its laurels. (Of course, by the time you read this, perfection may have ended.)

    Rodgers is throwing with as much accuracy as anybody since Troy Aikman for those great 1990s Cowboys teams.  The Saints may have some playoff say, but do you really see another NFC team in Indy in February?

San Francisco Does What?

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    I mean... Really?  A team with a new head coach, a QB almost run out of town, no off-season workouts, and they're the first to clinch a playoff berth?  

    Best at the rush, best defending the rush, stingy with points.  

    Whatever kind of Kool-Aid Jim Harbaugh brewed up, his players are gulping it down.   All we need now is a playoff game at a mud-soaked Candlestick to cap this story correctly. 

The Lions Are for Real! No!!! Wait!!!

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    How to figure this one?  Maybe they weren't really that good to start with?  Maybe it was because Tony Romo passed the Lions to a victory in Week 4, even though he had on a Cowboys uniform?  Maybe it was coach Jim  Schwartz getting all riled up by Jim Harbaugh's over-enthusiastic post game handshake.

    Maybe it was when Ndamukong Suh decided to become a kicker. This team has turned a 5-0 start into a disaster. You do have to learn to win in the NFL, and the Lions have not learned yet. 

Patriots Are Not Defensive

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    You knew the Pats were in trouble when they signed defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth in the off season.  Giving up 400-plus yards a game, worst pass defense in the league, personnel changes.  

    And they're 9-3. How did they do it?  

    Oh yeah, that quarterback nobody wanted to draft back in 2000.

Mile High Miracle Man

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    You can talk all you want about stats, but whenever you do that, you have to remember the story of the statistician who drowned in a river with an average depth of three inches. Tim Tebow's passing stats are woeful.

    Only one stat matters, and it starts with a win.  The Broncos are winning with Tebow at QB. Nothing else matters.