Aaron Rodgers has said it multiple times now: He doesn’t care if the Green Bay Packers are winning games with ugly performances, so long as they keep winning.
Lately, though, several analysts have been questioning just how much of the “ugly” is the fault of the two-time MVP quarterback as he has produced numbers well below his peak and ranks in the middle of the pack by a number of passing measures. Some, such as ESPN analyst Mike Greenberg, are even suggesting Rodgers has been “an average quarterback for a while now.”
“Here’s the truth: Aaron Rodgers has been an average quarterback for a while now,” Greenberg said Friday morning on “Get Up!” before rattling off a number of stats to make his case, including that Rodgers ranks 16th in yards per attempt (7.4) this season among passers and 22nd over the past three seasons.
Take a look at the rest of Greenberg’s argument about Rodgers and the Packers:
Now, all of this was supposed to be Mike McCarthy’s fault, so they fired him. Or it was the defense, so they spent $154 million on that. Or it was the running game, except Aaron Jones is tied for second in the league with touchdowns. Then it was the receivers, but they have the highest separation rate in the league, they are getting open. And then the offensive line is No. 1 in the league in pass protection this year. So maybe, just maybe, it’s actually the quarterback.
Here’s one more stat: Aaron Rodgers’ completion rate on tight-window throws, the stuff that made him a legend, is 31st in the sport this season.
So this is what I want to say now: The season is far from over. The Packers are going to be in the playoffs, and I am hoping against hope that No. 12 recaptures all the magic that made him, at his best, the best quarterback I’ve ever seen. Because he has been a far cry from there. And when my friend Stephen A. (Smith) calls him a bad man, I do not want that meant literally.
Follow the Heavy on Packers Facebook page for the latest breaking news, rumors and content!
Former Cornerback Claims 8 QBs are Currently Better
Unsurprisingly, Rodgers critics have been making all types of statements about the supposed decline of the Packers quarterback with the team’s offense unsteady, but none have been more ridiculous than former NFL cornerback Domonique Foxworth’s claim that Rodgers doesn’t even rank within the top eight quarterbacks right now.
According to the retired defender, Rodgers is currently playing behind a list of eight other passers that includes Lamar Jackson, Russell Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, Dak Prescott, Ryan Tannehill, Kirk Cousins, Deshaun Watson and Drew Brees.
“There have been three years now where Aaron Rodgers’ numbers have been significantly down,” Foxworth said Thursday during an ESPN segment with Greenberg. “He has a high passer rating because he doesn’t turn the ball over. He is great at this point at one thing: risk aversion. He doesn’t turn the ball over, but they’re one of the worst teams in the league in third down. He’s average in the fourth quarter. He’s not putting up big numbers each game.”
Foxworth is at least right about the turnovers in the sense that Rodgers has the lowest interception percentage in the league, tossing just two picks through the first 13 games. He has also been given the second-most time to throw in the league with an average of 2.91 seconds, according to NFL Next Gen Stats.
READ NEXT: Matt LaFleur Offers Update on Injured Packers Cornerback Against Bears