By David K.
When 2Pac released his post-jail double-disc album on Death Row Records, it was appropriately titled All Eyez on Me.Â 2Pac had been locked up for eleven months and was shot and nearly killed just three months prior to that.Â Â The entire hip-hop community was eagerly waiting to hear what Pac was about to unleash.Â
His much anticipated release certainly didnâ€™t disappoint as almost 600,000 copies were sold in the first week. Without question, it will go down as one of the greatest rap albums of all time.Â â€œAll Eyezâ€ were on 2Pac and he not only rose to the challenge, but out-did all expectations.
Aaron Rodgers has never been shot, doesnâ€™t have a tattoo reading â€œThug Lifeâ€ inked across his abs, and has probably never met a shorty who wants to be a thug.Â But make no mistake about it; all eyez were on the new Packers quarterback in his NFL debut Monday night, and like 2 Pac, he not only rose to the challenge, he also out-did everyoneâ€™s expectations.
In a sense, Rodgers had been imprisoned during his first three seasons in Green Bay, being handcuffed behind the legend that is Brett Favre.Â But when Favre announced his retirement on March 4th, the chains were removed from Rodgersâ€™ wrists and he was set to roam free.Â For a split second this off-season, it appeared imminent that the shackles would be put back on when Favre announced his intent to un-retire.Â However, the Department of Corrections (a.k.a. the Packers management) decided that Rodgers would remain a free man and that Favre would be shipped to a different facility.
Like All Eyes on Me, Rodgers was a hit in his first week as leader of the Pack, completing 18 of 22 passes for 178 yards, and two touchdowns (one passing, one running) in Green Bayâ€™s 24-19 win against the rival Vikings.Â Rodgers brought something to the Packers offense that his predecessor did not, the ability to use his feet to make things happen.Â He kept drives alive by scrambling for three first downs, and scored his first rushing TD in the NFL on a second-and-goal from the one, after failing to get in on first down.Â Would the Pack ever call back-to-back QB sneaks on the one-yard line with Favre under center?Â Doubtful.
Nobody should be more relieved than GM Ted Thompson and head coach Mike McCarthy who both ultimately put their careers in the hands of Rodgers.Â Their decision to bid adieu to Favre and turn the future of the franchise over to Rodgers was not a very popular one at first.Â But even the biggest Favre mark like me canâ€™t help but be impressed by not only Rodgersâ€™ performance on the field, but his seemingly unflappable demeanor off it.Â Throughout all the chaos, mayhem, and drama this off-season in Green Bay, Rodgers has maintained a steady head, and that has carried over to the way he plays the game.
If Monday night was any indication of the future in Titletown, things once again look promising.Â Another 13 wins and NFC Championship game appearance?Â A lot still has to be proven before I can buy into that.Â It was just one victory in a sixteen game schedule and though Rodgers showed off his potential to be a very productive signal caller in the league, he will need to show that consistency and longevity over an entire season.
For now, the critics and nay-sayers will ease off Rodgers and the Packersâ€™ decision to deal the face of their franchise.Â You can guarantee though, that one shaky performance will once again thrust â€œAll Eyezâ€ back on Rodgers.
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