Who saw this Packers' run coming, seriously? Aaron Rodgers
GREEN BAY (WLUK) -- After 10 games this season, the Green Bay Packers looked like a car headed to the junkyard.
They were broke down, banged up, running on fumes and 4-6. There was no reason to believe the season could be saved.
Then, for some reason, the driver of this car, quarterback Aaron Rodgers, said he thought the Packers could run the table. Sure, Aaron, run the table when the defense is playing like a sieve and the offense has no rhythm. Are you delusional?
Week by week, though, the Packers started building momentum with one win, then two wins, and so on. And now eight games later the Packers are one win away from the Super Bowl after winning their eighth game in a row by beating the No. 1-seeded Dallas Cowboys, 34-31, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, in a NFC Divisional playoff game that can only be described as incredible.
Rodgers is at the forefront of the Packers' resurgence. On a scale of 1-10, his play has registered an 11. Since the Packers started this run, Rodgers has thrown 24 TD passes and one interception, which came Sunday.
He has captured the NFL audience with his play and has had some observers call him the best ever. With only one Super Bowl title, that's a stretch, but maybe his play during this run is the best ever.
Sunday, with 35 seconds left in the fourth quarter and with two timeouts, the Packers were in position to make something happen with Rodgers. However, a sack and an incomplete pass had the Packers staring at third and 20 on their own 32 with 12 seconds on the clock.
Maybe just kneel down and go to overtime, right? Play it safe.
That's funny, but, no.
The Packers have Rodgers so there's always time (see Hail Mary passes) and somehow Rodgers, with the flick of his right wrist, found tight end Jared Cook tightroping the sideline for a 36-yard connection with three seconds to play.
After a Cowboys timeout, Mason Crosby kicked the Packers to a thrilling victory with a 51-yard field goal, his second field goal from more than 50 yards in the final two minutes (the other was 56 yards).
Rodgers has been off the charts during this run and the Packers have scored 72 points combined in two playoff games. Rodgers has been the best we've seen him and his playoff success has basically come without Jordy Nelson (NFL leader with 14 TD catches during the regular season), who missed Sunday's game after breaking ribs early in the playoff opener against the Giants.
Rodgers (356 passing yards with two TDs Sunday) believed in his team when nobody else did or really should have. At 4-6, why was there belief? Likely because Rodgers never gives up.
Sunday, he didn't give up when it looked like the game was headed to overtime after Dallas rallied. Now, the Packers go to Atlanta for the NFC title game.
This one-time team headed for the junkyard now looks like a brand new Porsche. It's been quite a ride with Aaron Rodgers.
Follow Doug Ritchay on Twitter @dougritchay