When the Packers entered the 2010 season, they had a big task ahead of them.
The season before, they had been humiliated twice by the Minnesota Vikings, and were knocked out of the playoffs by the Arizona Cardinals in the wild card round. They finished the season 11-5 and were hungry for a championship trophy after a 13-year drought.
In the first game of the season, Green Bay beat the Eagles 27-20. This game showed off the passing ability of Aaron Rodgers, who threw for two touchdowns.
But then the team grew inconsistent. The seventh game of the season was what I think the turning point for Green Bay. They played the Minnesota Vikings. In the much-anticipated game, Aaron Rodgers did great as the team beat the Vikings 28-24. Rodgers threw for 295 yards and two TDs. This was the springboard for a four-game win streak, which would be crucial. The team began to believe in themselves.
They played the Vikings again and beat them (should I mention they crushed them 31-3?). The team had begun the run that would later put them into the postseason. After a loss to Atlanta, then a win over San Francisco, the team lost an embarrassing game against the Detroit Lions when Rodgers was injured. With Rodgers out there was another loss, against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. Now, the team’s playoff opportunities were diminishing.
Then something happened. Green Bay faced the New York Giants, the exact team they lost to three years ago in the NFC Championship Game. In that game, the heart and soul of Wisconsin was ripped out. But this time, the Packers wouldn’t let that happen again. They fought, and eventually shut down the Giants, 45-17. In that game, Greg Jennings passed 5,000 career receiving yards. But the real fighter was Aaron Rodgers, who had a massive game. He passed for 404 yards and four touchdowns. This was another step towards the playoffs.
Their next game would be against the Bears who, in Wisconsin, are also called Public Enemy Number 1. They defeated them, 10-3. That game was crucial, as they clinched a spot in the postseason.
The Packers played the Philadelphia Eagles in the Wild Card round. Green Bay didn’t back down. This was the exact same spot they were in last year, when they were knocked out. Now, the result was different. The Cheeseheads fought in another tough game, winning 21-16.
The Packers soon found themselves in a hard situation. They had to play Atlanta, the team that was the number one in the NFC. Green Bay entered the game knowing what was at stake. The tension was apparent as the players stepped on the field. The Packers then won the game. No, not just won the game, demolished the Falcons, 48-21. The Green Bay Packers were going to Soldier Field for the NFC Championship Game.
Now the Packers-Bears game. I’m going to keep this short and sweet. The Packers would triumph, 21-14. I’m not going to rub it in to Chicago, but the Packers were amazing. This was their fifth straight win. And ultimately, this meant the Packers were going to the Super Bowl after their 13-year drought.
This was the first time a team from the NFC would go into a Super Bowl as a Number 6 seed. And again, the Packers were amazing. To everybody in Pittsburgh, this is a complement, not an insult. The Terrible Towels will have to wait another year. In a thriller, the Packers pulled it out 31-25. One thing was apparent that February night.
The Lombardi Trophy was coming home.