Peaking Too Early? Is It a Thing?Posted:Nov 19th, 2014 6:04 pm
During his weekly radio appearance on Tuesday, Aaron Rodgers was asked if there was a danger of peaking too early. "I don't even understand what that means," he told ESPN Milwaukee. "We're just playing well right now. I don't believe in peaking early."
He doesn't, but we fans do. The NFL season is a long, winding roller coaster ride, where the flavor of the week is applauded, from Seattle to Denver to Arizona to New England. You want your team to be the one that is playing at its best as the playoffs begin. Often, the team everyone is celebrating in November is long forgotten in January.
Why? Usually an injury or two derails a team's acceleration. The Packers are as healthy as they've been all season and it's showing on the field. It's amazing what can happen when your offensive line, skill guys, pass rushers, D-backs and your QB all play every week. But that can change at the drop of a hat, which causes fans to utter the dreaded "P" word.
Today, the Packers are the Vegas favorites to win the Super Bowl at 4/1 (vegasinsider.com) despite the fact that if the season ended today they'd be the #5 seed in the NFC with a road playoff game wildcard weekend at the locale of one of Rodgers' greatest games: Atlanta. Yes, the 4-6 Falcons would host the Pack in the first round.
But with six games to play the Packers are on a roll, with a favorable schedule where the road games (Minnesota, Buffalo and Tampa Bay) look less challenging than the home games (New England, Atlanta and Detroit). And with the way the Pack is dominating at Lambeau, a home playoff game or two looks like it could turn into a trip to the title game or Super Bowl (it would be helpful if they could avoid facing their kryptonite, San Francisco, though).
The offense is humming at a level never before seen and Rodgers is playing the position at a level we've never before seen. The defense appears re-energized with Clay Matthews' new semi-home in the middle and Julius Peppers setting the tone from the edge.
But we're Packer fans so we need to find something to worry about. Two straight 50 burgers? Are we peaking too early? No, we're healthy, humming and riding the arm of an all-timer just entering his prime.
All is as it should be as we enter the stretch run. So to quote that strong-armed QB: R-E-L-A-X.