The Green Bay Packers’ front office did everything possible to improve the defending NFC North champion’s roster during the offseason. The team added top-end free agent Martellus Bennett in free agency and targeted major needs on defense in the draft.
But when it comes to the Packers’ ability to contend for a Super Bowl next season, the onus will primarily be on Pro Bowl quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Such is the nature of the beast in an NFL that’s trending heavily towards franchise quarterbacks making the most impact.
As it relates to Rodgers himself, he understands full well the team needs to be better When its best is needed.
“Going forward, we have to be better when our best is needed. All around — offense, defense, special teams,” Rodgers said, via ESPN (h/t Pro Football Talk). “There are plays in that Atlanta game that, if they go our way, it’s a different ballgame. We missed a kick, we fumbled, we go stagnant on offense and the next thing you know, it’s 31-0. You’re not going to win games like that against good teams. I think we’ve rebuilt a little bit, but we’ve got to see what we’ve got here.”
Rodgers is specifically referencing Green Bay’s blowout loss to the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC Championship game this past February. It’s a game that saw the Packers fall down by four scores before ultimately losing 44-21. Rodgers himself threw an interception and was sacked twice in the loss.
The former MVP put up another stellar performance in 2016, throwing for a league-high 40 touchdowns with just seven interceptions. With that said, it’s readily apparent that he’s calling himself out to an extent here as well.