With the best quarterback in the league still in his prime, each season, Packer fans hope for nothing less than another Super Bowl.
Hopefully, the Packers brass has the same lofty expectations.
But another year has come and gone with no trip to the Super Bowl for the Green Bay Packers.
Instead, the NFC will be represented by the Atlanta Falcons, who were 8-8 last year, losing 8 of their final 11 games.
Last year, it was the Carolina Panthers who were the NFC representative in the Super Bowl.
The two years before (2013 & 2014), of course, the Seattle Seahawks represented the NFC.
The year before that, it was the San Francisco 49ers in the Super Bowl for the NFC.
And the year before that, it was the New York Giants.
So Eli Manning, Colin Kaepernick, Russell Wilson (twice), Cam Newton, and not Matt Ryan have been in the Super Bowl more recently than Aaron Rodgers has.
I find that incredible.
Much more will be written about that, and about the "why" that is the case, later. Ted Thompson and Dom Capers have a lot of explaining
to do for the deficiencies on defense year after year.
But as far as this year goes, I'd grade it as an A-/B+ overall. There were many successes.
And one way to look at it is this: The Packers won as many playoff games this season as the rest of the division has the past 10 years.
In addition to that, the Packers eliminated the Vikings in week 16, and the Lions in week 17. They actually didn't eliminate the Lions totally as they were able
to earn a wildcard spot, and lose right away to Seattle. But that week 17 game was the NFC North Championship, in Detroit, on NBC Football Night in America for the whole world to see, with other NFL players all watching. The Packers and Aaron Rodgers were victors there, in front of 60,000 screaming loud Lions fans.
Even the week before the Vikings game, the Packers had a fantastic finish to beat the Bears, in Chicago. The Packers defense blew a big lead, but the last second Rodgers to Jordy pass was season-highlight number one, for that thrilling win.
The Packers also spanked the Seattle Seahawks at Lambeau Field. Two years in a row, the Seahawks have left Green Bay with a loss.
The Packers ran the table.
True, November was ugly.
But all in all, despite failing one game away from the Super Bowl for the second time in the past three seasons, the Packers gave the fans a lot to cheer about and celebrate over.