Friday Apr 29

How the Packers Stack Up in the NFC North Right Now

Attention: open in a new window. PDFPrintE-mail

Packers vs NFC North DivisionWith the NFL Draft and free agency just around the corner, GMs prepare to fill holes in their rosters and engineer a competitive squad for the upcoming season. Before these roster moves occur, I examine how the defending Super Bowl champion Packers stack up at each position compared with the rest of the NFC North. 


Until the Vikings make a push for Kevin Kolb, there will be a large gap between the Packers and the rest of the division at quarterback. The Packers have one of the league’s best passers, who is young and under contract until 2014 - other words, the best possible scenario for a franchise and its passing attack. 

Aaron Rodgers’ phenomenal play in three seasons points to the Packers maintaining the top spot in this category for quite some time. It appears that 2011 will be a pivotal season for both Jay Cutler and Matthew Stafford in terms of determining if either QB is capable of leading their respective franchises for the long-term. 

  1. Packers
  2. Bears
  3. Lions
  4. Vikings 

Running Backs, Receivers and Tight Ends 

2010 saw a shift in power within the NFC North backfields with Matt Forte emerging as one of the league’s most versatile tailbacks and Adrian Peterson proving that even he can’t carry an entire offense. Forte’s emergence comes at the right time seeing as the Bears’ receivers continue to cast signs of mediocrity. The Vikings are strong at receiver with the young, explosive talent of Percy Harvin. 

There is not much to be said about the Lions’ playmakers on offense outside of Calvin Johnson and the emerging Jahvid Best. In Green Bay, the Packers’ receivers took a step back with an uncharacteristically high number of dropped passes. Still, with the return of Ryan Grant and Jermichael Finley, the Packers are simply stacked with weapons for Rodgers to utilize. 

  1. Packers
  2. Vikings
  3. Lions
  4. Bears 

Offensive Line 

If there is one area of the roster that the NFC North lacks in as a whole it’s the offensive line. The Lions were the lone bright spot for the division at this positional group, ranking sixth in the NFL for fewest sacks allowed. The Packers and Vikings ranked in the bottom half of the league, with the Bears sitting in dead last. 

Chicago’s offensive front figures to be a weak point again in 2011, since it’s rare to have a rookie left tackle produce at a high level in his first season. The Packers’ offensive line will lose at least one quality veteran this offseason, whether it be Daryn Colledge, Jason Spitz or Mark Tauscher. For now, the Lions have the surprising advantage on the offensive line. 

  1. Lions
  2. Vikings
  3. Packers
  4. Bears 

Front Seven 

The gap between the Bears’ elite run stopping unit and the rest of the NFC North’s seems to be closing. Chicago could use an upgrade at defensive tackle and in all likelihood will get it this offseason, either through the draft or by signing a free agent like the Packers’ Cullen Jenkins. The reworking of the defensive line in Detroit last offseason paid off, but the team needs help at linebacker. 

Like the Bears, the Vikings’ defensive line has taken a step back from its dominant 2008 form. The Vikings feature a solid linebacking corps, but nothing special. With the emergence of playmakers like Clay Matthews, B.J. Raji and Desmond Bishop in Green Bay, the Packers’ unit has to be considered one of the best front sevens of any 3-4 team in the NFL. 

  1. Bears
  2. Packers
  3. Vikings
  4. Lions 


The trio of Charles Woodson, Tramon Williams and Sam Shields at cornerback doesn’t get much better for a franchise. Throw safeties Nick Collins and Morgan Burnett into the equation and you have the hands-down best secondary in the NFC. The rest of the NFC North’s secondaries don’t even compare, with the Vikings having a solid set of cornerbacks, but next to nothing at safety. 

The Bears entered last season with a mess in the secondary, but have to feel much better about the picture there with youngsters Zack Bowman and Major Wright developing into reliable playmakers. The Lions weren’t impressed with rookie Amari Spievey at corner and opted to move him to safety. Louis Delmas is a strong point in the Lions’ defensive backfield, but the team could use an upgrade at corner. 

  1. Packers
  2. Vikings
  3. Lions
  4. Bears

Written by :

Add comment

Security code