Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers was on the sidelines for the Monday Night Football game against the Detroit Lions, healing after collarbone surgery.
He watched his team, led by quarterback Brett Hundley, lose at home 30-17. The Lions used to be a doormat in the NFC North, but quarterback Matt Stafford shredded the Packers defense for 361 yards and 2 touchdowns, all without an interception. The defense held the Packers offense in check all game; they scored late, so the game was realistically even more one-sided than the score indicates.
Losing Rodgers doesn’t just mean losing Rodgers, according to the stats. It means losing stars at other positions, like wideout Jordy Nelson.
“Life without Aaron Rodgers: Jordy Nelson has been held under 40 yards in consecutive games for the first time since Weeks 14-15…of 2010,” wrote ESPN’s Field Yates.
This is the real issue with losing a quarterback. Nelson is a good wideout, but he can only make plays if someone can get him the ball. If Hundley can’t, production drops across the board. They often say quarterback is the most important position on the field, and this stat shows exactly why that’s true.
Yates also thinks Rodgers’ injury has opened up the playoffs for the Lions.
“The Lions, at 4-4, have just one more game this season against a team currently with a winning record,” he wrote. “Possible Wild Card push?”
The Minnesota Vikings lead the NFC North at 6-2. However, the Lions already beat them, 14-7, and the Vikings have plenty of quarterback issues of their own. Detroit could make a push to win the entire division.
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