Lambeau Field brings out best in Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers

Sep. 9, 2011

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Postgame analysis: Green Bay Packers-New Orleans S...: Mike Vandermause and Rob Demovsky discuss the Packers' offensive prowess and defensive concerns coming out of Thursday night's win over New Orleans.

Grading homework

Passer ratings and won-loss records compiled by Packers quarterbacks after their first 25 regular-season starts at Lambeau Field.

Rate Passer W-L-T
106.12 Aaron Rodgers 17-7-0
94.43 Brett Favre 22-3-0
77.84 Bart Starr 17-7-1
76.97 Lynn Dickey 13-12-0

Others with more 10 or more starts

76.58 Don Majkowski 4-9-0
59.47 David Whitehurst 6-5-1
58.06 Randy Wright 1-11-0
52.21 Scott Hunter 5-4-1


A Starr shined here, Majik practiced flight of hand, and from a Favre the notion of visiting became a daunting proposition.

Today, Lambeau Field might well be called “Mr. Rodgers Neighborhood.”

Aaron Rodgers made his 25th regular-season start Thursday night at the stadium that once showcased the talents of quarterbacks Bart Starr, Don Majkowski and Brett Favre.

Rodgers is more than at home in their company.

After all the hype, the concerts, the talking heads and the pre-game buildup, the evening came down to football. At that Rodgers excels, and he demonstrated as much with a scintillating opening quarter that launched Green Bay past the New Orleans Saints 42-34 in a game that came down to the final snap.

Three years to the day before taking the field against the Saints, Rodgers made his first NFL start earning a 24-19 decision over the Minnesota Vikings at Lambeau Field on Sept. 8, 2008. In the time since, he has turned the 54-year-old structure into his personal playground.

Against the Saints, Rodgers came out smoking with an opening for the ages. The 27-year-old Californian completed 14 of 15 passes for 188 yards and three TDs in the first 15 minutes.

His yardage total broke Brett Favre’s first-quarter franchise record of 180 yards set on Oct. 7, 2002 against the Bears. His three scoring passes erased the record of two shared by many and first established by Red Dunn on Oct. 25, 1931 versus the Providence Steamroller.

Rodgers completed his first seven passes, not throwing incomplete until pressured by defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis. It was the most consecutive completions to start to a season by a Packers quarterback since Lynn Dickey hit 18 straight in the 1983 opener in Houston.

Scoring 21 points early is a rarity for Green Bay, but against the Saints it nearly wasn’t enough. Just seven times in 90 previous seasons have the Packers scored that many or more points in an opening quarter.

Rodgers produced touchdowns on each of Green Bay’s opening three drives. He was particularly adept on third down where he went 4-for-4 for 44 yards and two scores.

Such marksmanship earned him a perfect 158.3 passer rating for the quarter.

Making 25 starts by itself is worth a mention. Only four quarterbacks – Favre (117), Starr (43) and Lynn Dickey (27) – started more often in the regular-season than Rodgers at Lambeau Field.

But with Rodgers it’s always about quality, and No. 12 is easily the Packers' highest rated passer at the venerable venue through 25 starts. His rating of 106.1 is more than 10 points better than the 94.4 of Favre, who ranks second.

Rodgers has never really had a bad day at home, at least not statistically. He has posted a rating of 100 or better in 16 of 25 starts, and he has never had a rating lower than 80.1.

He’s consistent. By quarters he’s compiled passer ratings of 110.2 (first), 104.8 (second), 105.8 (third) and 104.0 (fourth).

When it comes to winning, Rodgers has won 12 of his last 13 starts at Lambeau Field. He is 16-0 when Green Bay leads at halftime.

Along with this winning has come a plethora of points. Since 2008, Green Bay has scored 723 points in 25 regular-season games (28.9 per game) at Lambeau Field. That total is higher than the 619 the team produced in Starr’s first 25 starts or the 618 of Favre.

Considering Rodgers’ success, the Packers should strive to get their elite quarterback his first postseason start at Lambeau Field come January. His body of work suggests that having the road to the Super Bowl go through Green Bay might be the best route for Mike McCarthy’s team to take if they’re to represent the NFC at Lucas Oil Stadium in February.

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