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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Looking ahead to the 2011 Packers season

Roberto Ruiz-Maki

Next season, the Green Bay Packers will be looking to continue the tradition of repeating as NFC champions the year after they win the Super Bowl. With perhaps the best tight end in football in Jermichael Finley, underrated running back Ryan Grant, sparkplug safety Morgan Burnett, and a slew of players on both sides of the ball returning next season, the Packers will look to repeat as Super Bowl champions.
Fans who watched the Super Bowl know that everybody knew what the Packers were going to do. The Steelers, commentators, and fans all knew that the game plan was to pass first, second, and third. The game was placed squarely on the shoulders of Aaron Rodgers, and he delivered. With no running game and only three healthy receivers (not counting Brett Swain), Rodgers picked apart the number one defense in the NFL. What will this offense be able to accomplish with Finley (an athletic specimen with no equal in the NFL) and Grant returning from injury? The sky is the limit for this Packers team and Packers fans fully expect another productive season.
Rodgers is now firmly cemented as one of the NFL’s elite, doing everything that was expected of him and even more. He joins Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Drew Brees as the quarterbacks that can win you a game on any given Sunday.
While Brady was voted the MVP (unanimously), Rodgers will be looking to win next year. The team will be in prime position, with (what is expected to be) several primetime games with an explosive offense. Perfect regular seasons have only been accomplished twice in the history of the NFL; but looking ahead at the firepower that this team possesses on both sides of the ball, next season’s Packers team could very well give it a run for its money. It is unrealistic to expect a team to be perfect, but it is not crazy to say that a team has the necessary components to make a run. With four games against the AFC west (Kansas City Chiefs, San Diego Chargers, Denver Broncos, and Oakland Raiders) division next year, they will be facing a team that did not have a winning record the season before six times (at minimum).
Enjoy the offseason Packers fans, just know that next season looks even brighter.

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