3. What do the Packers have to do to reclaim the NFC North title?
From 2009 through 2016, taking the NFC North title meant having to go through the Green Bay Packers. The Packers made the playoffs every year of that stretch, capturing the North on five separate occasions, including four straight years from 2011-2014.
The worm has turned the last two years, with Green Bay failing to become a factor in the division race either year. 2017 was easy to write off because of a mid-season injury to Aaron Rodgers, but he was healthy for the 2018 season, making things even stranger.
The Minnesota Vikings have given the Packers a tough time over the years, and last year they went 1-0-1 against their bitter rivals. The Chicago Bears also re-established their presence in the league’s oldest rivalry, eliminating Green Bay from playoff contention last season with a big win at Soldier Field in late December.
The Vikings and Bears each present different challenges on offense, but they both feature very good defenses. The Bears’ unit is a particular beast, headlined by Khalil Mack on the edge, and he can wreck a game if opponents aren’t careful.
Green Bay invested significantly in its defense over the course of the winter, and if the unit gels they should be able to keep games close. The new look offense, which Rodgers will have to master quickly, will also have to find ways to score on some elite defenses in order to get the division wins necessary to capture the NFC North once again.