Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers has uncharacteristically been under some heat this season. Coming into Monday night’s clash with the Eagles, Green Bay was 4-6 on the campaign and Rodgers has had off-the-field questions about his fractured relationship with his family. What some would consider a “down” year from Rodgers still has him sitting 11th in QB rating in the NFL.
Then on Monday Night Football Rodgers reminded us he’s one of the top five quarterbacks of his generation with a sensational performance, going 30/39 for 313 yards and 2 TDs.
It takes us back to a time when not everyone would think Rodgers was on his way to Canton, or possibly even the starting lineup.
Let’s take the wayback machine to the 2008 NFL Draft when the Packers selected Louisville QB Brian Brohm in the 2nd round with the 56th overall pick. Brohm was the 2007 Orange Bowl MVP and had an illustrious career with the Cardinals.
The Packers were at a crossroads after a season which saw them lose in the NFC Championship Game to the Giants as Brett Favre had (finally) left the team, seemingly clearing the way for Rodgers to get his chance. Favre had “retired” several weeks before the draft and the Packers drafted Brohm to give their presumptive new starting QB some competition.
The day Brohm was drafted, ESPN draft analysts Merril Hoge and Todd McShay thought he could be the one to be the long-term heir apparent to Favre and not Rodgers.
Just have a look at this classic tape from the 2008 draft.
Hoge: “I do like Brohm better than Aaron Rodgers”
McShay: “Brian Brohm two years from now could be the starting quarterback of the Green Bay Packers.”
McShay: “Brian Brohm’s upside is greater than that of Aaron Rodgers.”
So how did that pan out? Let’s look at the career numbers of the two quarterbacks…
Rodgers: 35,473 passing yards, 284 TDs, 103.5 QB Rating (1st all-time), 2 NFL MVPs, 1 Super Bowl MVP
Brohm: 252 passing yards, 0 TDs, 5 INTs, 26.0 QB Rating
Brohm didn’t even win the backup job in Green Bay his rookie season, losing out on that job to Matt Flynn, who was drafted in the 7th round in 2008. After one year with the Packers, he was relegated to the practice squad and picked up by the Buffalo Bills. Over two seasons in Buffalo, Brohm put up the above career numbers, never throwing a touchdown pass in the NFL.
After the 2010 season, Brohm’s NFL career was over. He would go on to play for the Las Vegas Locomotives of the UFL and the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Amazingly, Brohm also threw 0 TDs and 5 INTs in his three seasons in the CFL.
It’s 2016 and Rodgers is still the quarterback of the Green Bay Packers and Brohm is now the quarterbacks coach at Western Kentucky University.