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Aaron Rodgers: Packers won't 'overreact' to struggles

Through two NFL Sundays, Aaron Rodgers and Case Keenum have something in common: They are the only QBs who have failed to gain 300-plus yards of total offense.

Sunday night's 17-14 loss to the Minnesota Vikings was a reoccurring nightmare for Rodgers. The Packers QB went 20-of-36 passing with a touchdown, an interception and three fumbles (one lost). Green Bay's best plays of the night were pass interference calls on corner Trae Waynes. Even that didn't work in the end, as the second-year cornerback jumped a wayward throw to snag what ended up as the clinching pick.

"We're not going to overreact," Rodgers said, via the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "It's been two weeks. We haven't quite found our rhythm yet, but we had some guys working in who hadn't worked a lot together so we trust the process and believe we can get this thing turned around.

"We have kind of an awkward schedule here. We have a game next week at home, a bye and then three at home. We have to find our rhythm here as we head back home."

We should give credit to Mike Zimmer's defense. The Vikings' defensive front is athletic, fast and deep. 

Yet, Sunday's sub-par performance wasn't an aberration for Green Bay. It's the continuation of Rodgers' 2015 struggles. The quarterback hasn't thrown for more than 300 yards in 11 games; eight of those contests he's tossed fewer than 250 yards (including both games in 2016). He's gone 14 straight contests with a passer rating below 100. Last year Rodgers threw for a career-low 6.7 yards per attempt. He's worse through two games this season, at 5.9.

We spent all last season noting how much Jordy Nelson's injury impacted Rodgers. Nelson looks healthy enough, yet Rodgers' problems continue.

"The rhythm in the passing game is not what we wanted," coach Mike McCarthy said. "That starts with me. We'll go back and look at the first two weeks and evaluate everything. We will improve."

The turnovers and carelessness with the ball in the pocket from Rodgers also need to improve. While the Vikings' defense provided pressure, there were times the quarterback saw ghosts in the pocket. Per Pro Football Focus, Rodgers was under pressure on 11 dropbacks, ran once, was sacked five times and threw five incompletions. His mechanics and footwork called to mind last season's problems. Not setting his feet can lead to some brilliant plays, but even for an All-Pro like Rodgers, it leads to inconsistency over time.

"It's Week 2, there's always a lot of work to do," Rodgers said. "We're close at times. We just need to figure out what our identity is. That's created throughout the season. We're trying some different things.

"We had some success with two-tight end stuff at times. We just didn't have enough success on third down and we turned the ball over too much."

The Packers have the talent to make this two-game stretch of ugliness forgettable by season's end. Then again, the struggles haven't exactly been a two-game anomaly for Mike McCarthy's offense.

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