With the Green Bay Packers on a bye, I figured this was a good time to resurrect Surviving Sunday for a week and ask a question that has been on my mind during this week without Packers football. Actually, two questions have been on my mind:
- If Brett Favre was the Packers quarterback during the Aaron Rodgers’ era, how many interceptions would Favre throw?
- If Rodgers was the Packers quarterback during the Favre era, how many interceptions would Rodgers throw?
I think it’s fascinating to think of Favre as the Packers QB in today’s era. Favre threw 50 interceptions over his first three seasons as the Packers’ starter. Over Rodgers’ 10 NFL seasons, now in his seventh as a starter, he’s thrown a total of 55 interceptions.
What if Rodgers threw 50 picks over his first three seasons leading the Packers offense like Favre did? He’d probably be benched or cut from the team.
What if Favre had a full career in today’s NFL, where quarterbacks are overprotected and it’s borderline illegal to play pass defense? There’s a good chance those interception numbers would be down.
Would they be significantly down? Hard to say given how Favre played the game, but it is safe to say it’d be fewer than 50 over three seasons.
You also have to factor in Mike McCarthy’s emphasis on winning the turnover battle every week and the realization from every NFL team that, hey, turning the ball over is bad. Let’s not do that.
And don’t forget about the Packers’ Rodgers’ era defense. Would Favre be more cautious if he played on today’s Packers because their defense isn’t that good? Or would he be even more Favre-like and take even more risks to make up for defensive leakiness?
What if Rodgers played in the 90s on those Packers teams that featured the likes of Reggie White, LeRoy Butler and Gilbert Brown on defense? Would he let a few more risky passes fly if he had confidence that his defense would clean up any mistakes he made? Or would he continue using his ridiculously great turnover ratio to the Packers’ advantage?
I’d also be interested to see if Rodgers changed his tune about holding the ball if he played in Favre’s era. Back then, you could hit quarterbacks, high or low, and drive them into the ground. Today, there’s a middle target area defenders must aim for and excessively slamming the QB into the turf draws a flag.
Both Favre and Rodgers would thrive in any era, but it’s interesting to think about the turnover question.
Chime in with your thoughts in the comments section, but please don’t turn it into another tired Rodgers vs. Favre debate. All I want to know is what you think both quarterback’s interception numbers would look like if they swapped eras.
Oh, I just thought of a bonus question: What if Twitter existed during Favre’s rise to prominence in the 90s? Picture Ron Wolf’s and Mike Holmgren’s face if they woke up on a Sunday morning before a big game and saw this on Favre’s Twitter feed.
Packers news, notes and links
- Still bored during the bye week? Was this Surviving Sunday column not entertaining enough for you. Fine. If you need even more Packers bye week content, the crew at Packerstalk.com has all kinds of new podcasts up. You really can’t go wrong with any of them, but the ‘Ol Bag of Donuts guys always make me chuckle.
- Zach at CheeseheadTV.com hands out his Packers midseason awards. Can’t say I disagree with any of his selections. For defensive MVP, I might have gone with Tramon Williams over Mike Daniels.
- In case you don’t get enough Dom Capers discussion during Packers games on Sunday, Dan at LombardiAve.com has a reasoned breakdown of the Packers defensive coordinator everyone loves to hate.
- If you’re finishing up the last of your kid’s Haloween candy, chow down on those fun size Reese’s and Snickers while reading ALLGBP.com’s Kris Burke Halloween-themed take on the Packers’ season thus far.
Non-Packers links and other nonsense
- Take this poll to determine if your bathroom habits are weird. If you take your pants off all the way to poop, you’re a weirdo.
- This story on what hostages of ISIS endure while in captivity is sobering, scary and extremely well reported.
- Kansas City Royals’ pitchers threw 2,287 pitches that reached 97 miles-per-hour or more this season. Minnesota Twins’ pitchers threw one.
- I’m a sucker for games or “Would you rather,” so this drew me right in.
- Did you know that it’s bee 25 years since the Berlin wall came down?
- If you missed Mastodon perform on David Letterman earlier this week, check it out here.
- Finally, good luck and be safe if you’re heading into the Minnesota or Wisconsin woods in the coming weeks to try and bag that 30-point buck. I’ll be in my deer stand bright and early on Saturday, likely firing off some #TweetsFromTheDeerStand.
Adam Czech is a a freelance sports reporter living in the Twin Cities and a proud supporter of American corn farmers. When not working, Adam is usually writing about, thinking about or worrying about the Packers. Follow Adam on Twitter. Twitter .