Rodgers, Jennings facing grade-A rivals

Posted Nov. 24, 2010 @ 3:19 p.m.
Posted By Dan Arkush

Each Wednesday throughout the season, we identify one Packers player, coach or area that is most under the microscope. This week, both QB Aaron Rodgers and WR Greg Jennings warrant the primary “Hot Spot” attention.

Considering the quality counterparts they will be up against in Atlanta this Sunday, the primary focus entering this game is shared by Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, who will be trying to outdo fellow third-year starter Matt Ryan, and WR Greg Jennings, who will be out to one-up Falcons WR Roddy White, who has been more productive than any pass catcher in the NFL this season.

Ryan, Rodgers and Jennings, who was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week by the league, are all coming off sterling Week 11 efforts. White was merely ordinary by his high 2010 standards against the Rams, catching nine passes for 83 yards. But in the Falcons’ previous game in prime time, he put on an MVP-caliber show, catching 12 passes for 138 yards and a pair of TDs, including the game-winning 33-yard TD pass with 20 seconds remaining against a strong Ravens team.

Jennings, who had three TDs last week against a Vikings secondary that was fit to be tied, isn’t doing anything out of the ordinary, according to head coach Mike McCarthy. But the Packers are definitely taking advantage of his ability to play all four WR positions in the Green Bay offense, enabling him to be moved around and matched up more successfully.

Rodgers really got it going after a slow start against Minnesota once he started operating more out of the pocket. It should be interesting to see how he fares against Ryan, who looked like a young Peyton Manning against the Rams down the stretch last week.