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The super bowl champions will be given their hardware on Thursday night during a ceremony at Lambeau Field. We’ve had months to digest the fact that the packers won, since there is no plans to play football this upcoming season, we might as well look back; at least for a sentence or two.
It was unexpected and it was a great watch, as is every super bowl in my opinion…even if some might not be as competitive as others and the Giants unfortunately are not always on the field.
Now that we are done with that, let’s focus on the NFC North, the division of the champs and its many quarterback personalities; except for Minnesota of course.
We all know who the class of this division is and I don’t expect much to change. Although, I would not be surprise if another team finishes on top of this division. I expect a lot from the usual suspects; usual suspects being Chicago Bears and Green Bay. Call me crazy but I do see a change coming in this division in the form of a game changing defensive tackle and an improving young offense.
Let’s get this out of the way now so we can move on.
The bears in my opinion will win this division because, they to me will be consistent while these other teams in this division will struggle…mainly because they are young and not great on both sides of the ball as of yet.
With that said, a conversation about the quarterbacks in the NFC North is more interesting to me then a talk about the teams as a whole…this is not to take away from the teams themselves because I do think this will be the toughest division in the NFL aside from the NFC East- but these players are special or have the potential to be.
We all know what Rodgers has done in three years as a starter in the NFL; in fact, he is on pace to pass Dan Marino, Payton Manning, Favre and Brady in all major statistical categories. Now I’m not saying the man will be a hall of famer, but let’s look at what he has done. Before even doing that, it may be more important to think about who he replaced in Green Bay and the circumstances in which it happened. How does one replace a legend in the manor which he did, with such grace and respectfulness? And then, winning a super bowl several years later. He is now top 3 or 4 in the league and will be MVP next year.
Matthew Stafford is 23 years old and hasn’t started a full NFL season as of yet, but the potential is still clearly there. At some point it will have to stop being potential and we will have to see it in his play on the field, but it will have to start with staying healthy.
Will he continue to be injury prone is the question… the thing with Detroit is their draft picks haven’t always lived up to the hype of being high picks but things have taking a turn these last few drafts and they are building the right way.
Stafford is not there yet in terms of being a high tier signal caller in the league but his time will come, there’s little doubt about that.
Cutler on the other hand is a seasoned gun slinger in the mold of Brett Favre…and no, I’m not saying that he is or will be Favre; but he has some tendencies.
Cutler is 28 and has been widely inconsistent over his years in Denver and Chicago-Like Eli Manning, I don’t want to keep saying his picks will go down and he will learn not to make as many little mistakes. But his talent level is high and he is a winner with great confidence and will…he will break through in a major way and with some more weapons on offense; he will have a good year.
He threw for over 3,000 yards last season and over 20 touchdowns- that will continue to improve if given help on offense.
There’s not much to say about Christian Ponder and the Vikings…except for the fact that he might have been the surprise of the draft. The 12th pick of the draft has a long future ahead of him and although he doesn’t seem to possess the it factor that these other quarterbacks have, he is in a good position to have a good season if he plays and eventually a good career… last time I checked, he does have a top 2 or 3 running back to hand the ball to in Adrian Peterson. Also, with a top tier defense, he and the Vikings should be in great shape.
When all is said and done, I won’t be shocked if Rodgers is a hall of famer with 2 to 3 rings, or if Cutler wins a super bowl, or even if Stafford and the rookie Ponder both enjoy long productive pro bowl careers.
Only time will tell if they all do… but as of right now, I have high expectations for all these teams and their respective signal callers.