Aaron Rodgers, Packers not hiding Super Bowl mindset

Lindsay H. Jones
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Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) celebrate after beating the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Divisional playoff game at AT&T Stadium.

This isn’t like a pitcher in the middle of a no-hitter. Inside the Green Bay Packers locker room, the Super Bowl isn’t some taboo topic.

“How do you not think about it? We’re 60 minutes away from being there again. It’s obviously on our minds,” quarterback Aaron Rodgers said Wednesday as the Packers began their preparations for Sunday’s NFC Championship Game.

Perhaps back in late November, when Rodgers first made his prediction that the Packers would “run the table” to the NFC North title, it was uncouth to talk about making it to Super Bowl LI in Houston.

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The Packers were reeling after a four-game losing streak when Rodgers made his proclamation. With each win since, he’s seen the Packers gain confidence. And now, in the midst of an eight-game winning streak, they can picture themselves back in the Super Bowl.

“When you go through rough stretches and you’re not playing great, confidence can waver. When you get to this point, when you’ve reeled off a bunch in a row, the mindset changes from, we’re going to be competitive to we’re going to win. That’s very dangerous,” Rodgers said.  “The expectation changed as the confidence grew.”

Rodgers said the Packers have benefitted from improved health and become a far more efficient team on third downs and in the red zone. Those trends will be tested Sunday if the team’s top two receivers, Jordy Nelson and Davante Adams, are unable to play because of injuries. Both receivers sat out practice Wednesday.

“We’ve won without them before," Rodgers said. "We’d like to have them out there, but we’ll see what happens."

Follow Lindsay H. Jones on Twitter @bylindsayhjones.

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