Each week, PackersNews.com and JSOnline.com will look at stories involving the Packers from national and local internet sites.
Plenty of things jumped out this week when looking around the web for Packers content, but none more so than this excellent piece from ESPN’s Kevin Seifert talking to Aaron Rodgers about his razor-sharp memory involving all things related to his play on the football field.
Seifert even asked the Packers' starting quarterback about his high school playing days, and Rodgers didn’t miss a beat.
Prompt: You had a long run in a high school all-star game...
Rodgers: It was a third-and-10, and they brought six [rushers]. They brought both [outside] guys. We had four receivers, so we didn't have it picked up. I just kind of dropped back. Since they brought six, it was man-to-man on the outside. The middle came open. I dashed up the middle, cut to my left, made a guy miss, got a couple blocks and ended up scoring in the left end zone.
This play happened 14 years ago. Incredible. Read the whole thing.
Another national outlet turned its gaze toward Green Bay this week, though it wasn’t to feature the players on the field playing for the Packers organization. No, Forbes took a look at Packers fans this past Wednesday and came to the conclusion that they are, wait for it, the best fans in the NFL.
From Forbes’ Christina Settimi, who covers the business side of sports:
Are you willing to officially change your name to reflect your allegiance to your NFL team? Did you fall in love with your fiancé in part because her last name is your team’s name, and because of that are you going to take her name in marriage? Would you have your dentist put your team’s helmet on your tooth implant? How about six of them? Do you meet your priest in the parking lot for a Sunday mass tailgate at the stadium? Did you plan your NFL team-themed funeral, and pick out your team’s color-lined casket, a custom offering from a company in town, and your pallbearers' team-themed ties?
If you answered ‘no’ to any of these, you need to step up your game. Because that’s the sort of commitment needed to topple the Green Bay Packers from the top of our ranking of the NFL’s Best Fans.
Be sure to find the formula Forbes used to figure out who the best fans are. It reads like something out of a NASA manual.
Of course, with the Packers playing the Minnesota Vikings this week, the words of a Pro Football Hall of Famer who played for both franchises might carry a little bit of weight. Which is why Brett Favre’s SiriusXM NFL. radio show on Thursday was a must-listen.
According to Favre, “Green Bay is a much better team.”
If you look at Green Bay’s first game versus their second, there’s a lot more fanfare in the second obviously. And as a player, you feel it. It’s like you can cut the tension with a knife and that’s what makes it so fun. … Now this is a new stadium in Minnesota so no one knows what that’s going to be like, but it will be electric, I think we all know that. There’s a lot of history, lot of bad blood, lot of great games, and being on both sides of this, being on Minnesota and being on Green Bay, I know how bad both fan bases want to win this game as well as the team. My first thought is Green Bay is a much better team. And I’m not knocking my old friends at Minnesota but Green Bay is a much better team, and it starts with the quarterback. Aaron Rodgers is Aaron Rodgers and he seems to pick up right where he left off, and not to mention the rest of the team’s healthy. … Minnesota has got to play better than they played last week; their defense saved the day, but you’ve got to figure out a way to score points if you’re going to beat Green Bay. And you have to figure out a way to slow down Green Bay and that’s easier said than done.
You can hear the audio here.
Finally, something that caught my eye Monday was Pro Football Focus (the analytics site partly owned by NBC’s Cris Collinsworth) and their post-game grade for Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews.
According to PFF, Matthews played the worst game out of any defender the Packers put on the field in Jacksonville.
I found this more than a little curious, and apparently, so did the folks over at The Power Sweep.
Jon Meerdink broke down Matthews’ play and came to a much different conclusion.
Did he play overwhelmingly well? No. Did he struggle? That's tough to justify, even if his play declined significantly through the rest of the game. Was he the Packers' worst defensive player? Almost certainly not, especially when you consider the Packers' rough outing in the secondary.
Be sure to read the whole post. Meerdink does a nice job using GIFs to show you what he’s talking about. Like football coaches always say, the Eye In the Sky doesn’t lie.