We don't normally do a Sunday morning Black and Blue All Over post because most of the stories lose relevance once the afternoon games begin. But I do want to draw your attention to Lori Nickel's excellent take on the speed bump -- real or imagined -- that Aaron Rodgers has hit midway through his third season as the Green Bay Packers' starter.
Rodgers has come under some scrutiny for the Packers' performance in close games since he took over as the starter in 2008, especially as it compares to predecessor Brett Favre. Will Sunday night mark a changing of that guard?
Here's a relevant excerpt from Nickel's story:
"There's always something that people are going to pick at," he said. "I haven't won a playoff game yet. ... I still feel like I have a lot to prove -- to myself. I mean, I've just brushed the surface of some of the goals and expectations that I wrote down when I was a rookie, things I thought I wanted to accomplish in this league."
Make a Pro Bowl. Win a playoff game. Win a Super Bowl.
"I want to be the best," Rodgers said. "I've always wanted to be the best."
Rodgers knew following Favre would not be easy; he'd grown up a Montana fan.
"I know a lot of friends and family who were Joe Montana fans," he said in 2008. "It didn't matter how good Steve Young did - they weren't going to cheer for him because he wasn't Joe Montana. I just can't deal with that. It's really out of my control."