Aaron Rodgers versus Taylor Heinicke.
Do we need to know anything more about the National Football League matchup for this week’s game between the Green Bay Packers and Washington?
The Packers are riding a five game winning streak that began after they lost their opening contest to the New Orleans Saints, 38-3. That defeat brought to light that Rodgers may not be a happy camper in Green Bay after a few events that seemed to sour the reigning NFL Most Valuable Player.
The three events begin with the Packers choice to use their first round draft choice two years ago to select quarterback Jordan Love. The Packers were just a game away from the Super Bowl the year before they drafted Love, and another top offensive player could have been the final piece in a Super Bowl berth.
Instead, Green Bay selected the only player that couldn’t help Rodgers. The Packers defense didn’t get an impact player, which could have helped Rodgers, and his offense didn’t have a first round draft selection added to his arsenal.
Rodgers was not happy.
Then, in a move that even nearly a year later continues to rattle the minds of thinking football people, Head Coach Matt LaFleur decided to kick a field goal on fourth and goal from inside the ten yard line with just over two minutes remaining in the game and the Packers trailing by eight points. Even a successful kick leaves the Packers needing a touchdown to catch the eventual Super Bowl Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, while a touchdown and two point conversion could have evened the score with two minutes left in the contest.
After the decision, and field goal, the Packers didn’t get the ball back and Tom Brady and company were on to their Super Bowl victory.
Rodgers was not happy.
This past offseason the front office and Rodgers got into a bidding war for his contract and the Packers didn’t give their quarterback what he wanted, and he could conceivably be playing his last season with the team.
Rodgers is not happy.
So, when he lost the opener to the Saints without posting a touchdown, word was out that the Packers are doomed.
Not so fast on that assumption.
The competitor in the quarterback emerged and he has once again been playing like the great player he is while leading Green Bay to five straight wins. Included in those victories was a satisfying division win last week over the Chicago Bears which keeps Green Bay alone atop the NFC North Division standings.
Next week, the Packers play the only team in the league entering the seventh week of play without a loss, the Arizona Cardinals. It is likely that the Packers attention may already be looking past Washington and onto next week’s showdown.
Now do you see why the Rodgers versus Heinicke contest requires a second look?
I’m not the only one doing it. While the public is backing the Packers in this contest scheduled for Lambeau Field at a more than 60% clip, the point spread on this game has dropped from Green Bay by 10 points on the opening line to Washington only getting 7½ points currently.
What does that mean?
Rodgers is not going to be happy.
Qoxhi Picks: Washington Football Team (+7½) over Green Bay Packers