Sunday’s stunning 37-20 playoff defeat to the New York Giants propelled the Green Bay Packers into the offseason about three weeks earlier than they had originally planned.
At least they can take solace in putting quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ forthcoming MVP trophy in the spot they had designated for their next Lombardi Trophy.
But between now and the start of the 2012-13 season, there will be many questions that need to be answered,
including:Will the value of Green Bay Packers stock plummet on Wall Street? Will those shares fall in value by as much as 17 points, perhaps?How long will the smile stay on Brett Favre’s face? Will his face be permanently scarred by it?Then there’s Tim Tebow. … OK, Tebow and the Packers really have nothing in common (although one or two of Rodgers’ throws on Sunday resembled some of Tebow’s errant passes), but all writers of NFL-themed material are contractually obligated to include at least one reference to the Denver Broncos quarterback in their stories or columns. That’s what the lawyer standing over my shoulder is telling me anyway. There, I met my requirement.Will the Packers rest some of their starters again, if the opportunity presents itself, and allow the possibility of rust getting caked on their green and gold uniforms? And, is there any truth to the rumor that head coach Mike McCarthy will force his starters to play all four quarters of their preseason games?
* What will the Packers do to remedy all those dropped passes and fumbles that hastened their departure from the playoffs? Can they buy a crate of those sticky gloves Tom Cruise used to cling to that Dubai skyscraper in “Mission: Impossible”? With that kind of adhesive, the Packers should be able to haul in a few more passes, huh?Will Green Bay fans burn their cheeseheads as part of the mourning process?Will the Packers forbid Rodgers from appearing on the cover of the next “Madden” video game, ensuring that some other team’s player receives the annual curse instead?Will the club enforce stricter screening of all future draft choices? Will prospective players be asked if they are able to follow the flight of a ball and catch it or run down a ball carrier and bring him to the turf?Will fuming Packers fans begin circulating petitions to recall McCarthy?Will the livid Packers take their frustrations out on the rest of the NFC North — Lions and Vikings and Bears, oh my! — next fall?
But of all the pressing questions the Packers and their fans will face during this long offseason, perhaps the most important is this: Will TV viewers finally be rid of those goofy State Farm Insurance “Discount Double-Check” commercials?
That’s one offseason move that needs to be made immediately.
Contact News Tribune sports editor Rick Lubbers at email@example.com or (218) 723-5317.
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