NFC North still Packers’ to lose

The Green Bay Packers have won three straight NFC North titles under head coach Matt LaFleur. They are about to win a fourth. With all due respect to the Minnesota Vikings, Detroit Lions and Chicago Bears, they have little chance of overtaking the Packers in 2022. At least that is the way I see it.

allen-robinson-jaire-alexander-packers-bears.jpgYes, I know the Packers traded Davante Adams, I just don’t see that being a problem. I believe the Packers offense will be even harder to defend without 75% of playbook designed around one guy. In fact, I think a third-straight NFL MVP is definitely on the table for quarterback Aaron Rodgers. I think he will be better this year without the burden of Adams on the offense. And I’m buying what the defense is selling, despite my reservations about defensive coordinator Joe Barry.

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Competition is not strong

The main reason I think the Packers repeat, however, is that the rest of the division is weak to very weak. First you have Detroit. The Lions showed some spunk late last year but spunk doesn’t win division titles. I’m not buying Dan Campbell as an NFL head coach. Rah-rah doesn’t get it done in this league. Not too mention they don’t have any players.

The Bears are right there with the Lions. They are team in chaos with another new coach and general manager combo trying to rewrite the book of bad decisions previous regimes published. They at least think they have a quarterback of the future in Justin Fields but the jury is just beginning deliberations on that one. The Bears have no talent around him so it will not be easy on him. The Bears will have to win with defense and they aren’t very talented on that side of the ball either.

The only team with a chance to compete with the Packers is the Vikings. They are loaded with talent on offense with QB Kirk Cousins, WR Justin Jefferson and RB Dalvin Cook. For some reason many people think the Vikings defense is also good. They are not. Last year they were 30th in the league in yards and 23rd in points. Former Packers’ defensive coordinator Ed Donatell has his work cut for him.

Working in the Packers’ favor is Mike Zimmer is no longer the Vikings’ head coach. Zimmer had a tendency to make life rough for Rodgers, even though Rodgers did win most of the meetings between the two.

So I think the Packers will breeze to another division title. In some ways I wish the division was tougher. Maybe being battle tested entering the playoffs would help them get over the hump. We’ll see what happens, but barring major injury it should be an easy ride to another division title.


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