Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is returning from a 2013 season that consisted of a collarbone injury, and he is primed for a bounceback season.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers missed nearly half the 2013 season with a broken collarbone, and the Packers instantly felt the sting of losing him and nearly missed the playoffs.
Rodgers showed that he can still play at an elite level when healthy, and he will continue to maintain his production. Although it will be difficult to top his 2011 MVP season, posting similar numbers and winning a Super Bowl would make it easy to argue that his 2014 season was his best since his MVP season ended without a playoff win.
Here are five reasons why Rodgers will have the best season of his career.
5. Improved offensive line
The Packers threw left tackle David Bakhtiari to the wolves in his rookie season after right tackle Bryan Bulaga endured a season-ending knee injury, and he performed extremely well for a rookie despite experiencing growing pains. The second-year tackle held his own against pass rushers like Jared Allen. The guard position is set with Pro Bowler Josh Sitton and T.J. Lang returning. Center is a concern though since Evan Dietrich-Smith left for Tampa Bay. This is why Corey Linsley was drafted in the fifth round, but second-year player J.C. Tretter is the leading candidate to take over for Dietrich-Smith. Even with question marks at center, Rodgers will have more time to throw with Bulaga returning at right tackle. The depth is quality as well with Derek Sherrod finally healthy and Don Barclay offering versatility.
4. Deeper receiving corps
James Jones departed for the Oakland Raiders, but that was no big loss since Jordy Nelson is returning as the top target. Nelson is entering 2014 fresh off a new contract extension that will keep around four more years. Randall Cobb will be back healthy and retain his starting role. The former Kentucky receiver is in a contract year without an extension done, so he will look to prove himself as a worthy long-term option. Jarrett Boykin is the third receiver for now, and he filled in well for Cobb when he was out with a knee injury. His experience will come in handy since the remaining receivers are rookies. However, Davante Adams and Jared Abbrederis are promising rookies with high upside, and they will benefit from having Rodgers to throw to them. Adams was a pass-catching machine at Fresno State, so he should fill Jones’ hole instantly. Abbrederis offers speed, and he was a playmaker at Wisconsin. Having this many weapons will undoubtedly keep Rodgers’ numbers high.