With the 1-5 Bears coming to Lambeau Field on Thursday, Aaron Rodgers has a great chance to snap out of a slump that has plagued him for, well, roughly the last calendar year.
“Listen, we all know Aaron Rodgers is a great quarterback and we have these expectations for him to play at a tremendously high level – something that he has shown us since he became the starter for the Green Bay Packers,” CBS NFL analyst Solomon Wilcots said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “But over the last 12 to 15 games, it has not been what we expect from Aaron Rodgers.”
Rodgers has gone 14 straight games without a 300-yard day and ranks 26th in the league in completion percentage (60.2 percent).
“His completion percentage is way down in terms of the consistency, the accuracy – it just doesn’t look like what we’re accustomed to seeing from Aaron Rodgers,” Wilcots said. “For me, I just think it goes back to the technique and fundamentals of what is required to play the position – something he’s always been very good at. That’s why his accuracy has always been very good. But something is off with Aaron Rodgers and that means he’s got to get back to the real finer points of playing the position and that is drilling down on his mechanics and his fundamentals so the game can once again come natural to him.
“So you can blame it on not having Jordy Nelson one year ago, which a lot of us had said,” Wilcots continued. “You can blame it on (him being) sacked and hit too much, but if you go back and look in previous years where he’s been hit a lot and sacked a lot, he still performed at a very high level. So this goes beyond all those things, and at some point, Aaron Rogers has simply got to play better.”
In 2009 and 2012, Rodgers threw for 69 touchdowns to just 15 interceptions – while being sacked 101 times. In the past, the offensive shortcomings around Rodgers did not matter; now they do.
“Again, we’re talking about a very high bar here,” Wilcots said. “And we’re talking about what we’ve seen him do over the course of his career. We’ve come to this expectation for him to play at a high level. Aaron Rodgers isn’t playing poorly. He’s not awful. He’s just not at the level that we were accustomed to seeing and he has performed at that level despite all those things that we now use as excuses. He has performed at an extremely high level even when some of those flaws were consistent with the offense. He was able to overcome them and still perform at a high level, and that’s not happening right now.”