Monday, January 17, 2011
Aaron Rodgers: A Lesson in Moving On
Sometimes your first love isn't your best love.
We've all been there. You meet the person you think, from the minute you lay eyes on her, is perfect. You have an instant connection and there aren't enough hours in a day to spend with each other. She gives Celine Dion songs deeper meaning.
Then, just like that, it's over. You don't know how you got there. You don't know what compelled her to leave you for the meathead who probably has a six pack but know can't tell you the capital of more than five states. This was the person you thought you'd spend the rest of your life with. You watched crappy movies and said you loved them. Went to events like the ballet (during the NBA playoffs) that you will never forgive yourself for and prematurely bought that ring you had to shamefully return. (All hypothetical of course.)
You gave everything you had only to see it blow up in your face.
Sound familiar Packers fans?
And then, he left. And not only did he leave, he left for your biggest rival. The pain must have been brutal. The cheesehead faithful were undoubtedly putting together break up mixtapes filled with the Tony Rich Project and N*SYNC.
...That's when you know you are in bad shape.
To make it worse, Favre had arguably the best season of his career with the Vikings last year. The Packers first love had moved on and moved on well. That's grounds for defriending because the hurt of seeing your 'one' with a better life than what you could offer is unbearable.
Favre and the Vikings got to the NFC title game while the Packers suffered a mind boggling loss in a thriller against Arizona. Packers fans had to be thinking, "what if we and Favre were still together?" "Can I live without him?"
Like all relationships, when they first end, you think about the good times. How much you laughed at stupid stuff, the cute thing she did with her nose, and those jokes only you two will ever understand. But, as time goes by, you start remembering more of the bad. That fight that she picked just because, those things she made you do that you despised, and how she never wanted to do what you wanted.
When Favre bolted for Minnesota, it was easy to forget he wasn't perfect in Green Bay. He threw an awful interception in the NFC title game against the Giants. He often put the ball up in the air for grabs and with as much personal success that he had, his teams often made early exits from the playoffs.
Like the pain of losing the 'one' to a Jersey Shore outcast, time slowly but surely starts to mend the wounds.
For the Green Bay Packers, it's almost time to rip off the band-aid for good.
He's the girl at the high school reunion who used to be hot, but is now bagging groceries with a beer gut Peter Griffin would be jealous of.
Favre's old team, the Packers, are the former nobodies who pull up to the reunion in a Bentley with two Victoria's Secret models on his arms.
The man responsible for the transformation is Aaron Rodgers. What Green Bay's current quarterback is doing for the Green and Yellow is making Packers fans forget about "the one" who up and left.
Rodgers has his team closing in on an NFC title and is doing so with gaudy numbers.
An encore performance seemed almost impossible. Someone forgot to tell Rodgers.
A week later in Atlanta, he threw three more touchdowns and ran for a score, capped off most impressively by his 'Title Belt' celebration, in the Packers 48-21 beat down of the Falcons, who almost never lose at home.
Football is the ultimate team sport, but this has to feel like sweet personal revenge for Rodgers.
For the past three seasons he has been compared to Favre, who was for years the Loved One of Lambeau.
Whenever there was a Rodgers highlight it was followed by one of Favre. Rodgers goes down because of a concussion, people question if Favre would have sat out that game. It had to be frustrating.
In Green Bay, there may never be that initial spark like their first love, but what they've found since moving on may ultimately be best for the team's long term happiness.
Favre may be the "one who got away," but Rodgers is taking over as "THE ONE"