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After last seasons’ disappointing playoff exit, the Packers are ready for the upcoming season.
Offensively, the Packers are led by last seasons’ MVP, Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers threw for 4,643 yards, 45 touchdowns, and had a league leading passer rating of 122.5. Expect a similar type year this upcoming season especially since all of his core offensive weapons are back. Not to mention, the Packers also added running back Cedric Benson, this offseason. The addition of Benson definitely improves the Packers non-existent run game from last season, which should also pay dividends for Rodgers and the passing game.
Defensively, the Packers certainly have some concerns. Last season, Green Bay was ranked last in the NFL and allowed 411.6 yards per game. In addition, the Packers had a very difficult time getting pressure on the opposing teams’ quarterbacks and were ranked in the bottom five in the league. As a result of their defensive woes, Green Bay used six of their eight draft picks on defense. First round pick Nick Perry from USC and second round pick Jerel Worthy from Michigan State should help the Packers put some pressure on quarterbacks this upcoming year.
The secondary may be more of a concern in terms of defensive problems. The Packers parted ways with safety Nick Collins because of health concerns, and as a result, they moved cornerback Charles Woodson, to the safety position at the start of training camp. In addition, the Packers also released veteran safety Charlie Peprah. The departure of these veterans opens up a chance for the young members of the secondary, especially defensive backs Morgan Burnett and M.D Jennings to prove they are NFL ready. Expect Woodson to move back to corner if M.D Jennings or rookie Jerron McMillian impress defensive coordinator Dom Capers.
The Packers start off the season with some difficult tests, week one against San Francisco 49ers, week two Chicago Bears, three at Seattle, and four New Orleans Saints. It is not likely the Packers will go 15-1 like last season, but a record of 11-5 or 12-4 is a more realistic target for their 2012 campaign. In addition, they should win the NFC North, a much more competitive division this upcoming year thanks to big improvements to the Chicago Bears roster as well as much of the young talent of the Detroit Lions growing in experience.
Image Courtesy of Green Bay Packers