Year after year, football shows us that there is one position that is more valuable than the rest. And that is the quarterback. In the NFL, it is extremely difficult to win the Big One without an elite quarterback, and recent history backs that up. With Super Bowl 50 approaching, don’t expect that trend to be bucked. This is the year of the Green Bay Packers and their quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, the best player in the NFL.
There should be no discussion about the best player in the NFL. That would be Aaron Rodgers. The reigning MVP can do everything- throw accurately, throw powerfully, run, make those around him better, lead a team, and step up in the clutch. Right now, he is at the peak of his career and virtually unstoppable. Health is the only issue with Rodgers, who was hampered during the end of last season by injury. If he stays healthy, the Packers are the favorite in any game they play.
The supporting cast in Green Bay is unbelievably talented. Rodgers is well protected by an underrated offensive line and has a wealth of options at receiver. Even with Pro Bowl receiver Jordy Nelson out for the 2015 season, a door has opened for Davante Adams to make a big impact. Unlike many teams with elite quarterbacks, Green Bay has found a balance with the passing and rushing attacks. The emergence of running back Eddie Lacy as an elite running back gives the Packers a top-tier run game, forcing opposing offenses to pick their poison.
For the Packers to reach the Super Bowl, their defense must be Super Bowl caliber. As the season nears, the unit definitely has the potential. The health of linebacker Clay Matthews and development of the young defensive backs and pass rushers are the priorities for defensive coordinator Dom Capers, and both are realistic goals.
The Packers have the most talented offense in the NFL, a premier coaching staff led by head coach Mike McCarthy, and have consistently been among the league’s elite. But the reason I’m choosing the Packers is their resiliency. Last January in the NFC Championship Game against the Seattle Seahawks, the Packers held a 12-point lead with only three minutes left. Then, Green Bay collapsed, blowing the lead and losing in overtime, and the team suffered the most painful loss in franchise history. But head coach Mike McCarthy suffered an even worse loss- the death of his brother. Fast forward to a couple weeks ago, when their best receiver, Jordy Nelson, tore his ACL and was ruled out for the season.
Green Bay is ready to move forward and these experiences will only strengthen them. Neither a heartbreaking loss nor crushing injury can stand in the way of the Packers. They will face adversity, but when they do, there will be no other team better at adjusting, moving forward, and succeeding. The Green Bay Packers won the first and second Super Bowl. Don’t bet against them to win the 50th Super Bowl and bring the Vince Lombardi Trophy home.
UPDATE: The Packers are 6-2, with losses in the last two weeks against undefeated teams, the Broncos and Panthers. Despite these struggles, I stand by my Super Bowl pick because THESE ARE THE GREEN BAY PACKERS.