So what did ya’ll think of the Bleacher Report article about the Green Bay drama? I found it quite the fun read. It was kind of nice to get some drama that wasn’t Antonio Brown related.

There seem to be two general camps, as always. Camp 1, the article is basically accurate and all this shit happened and it is hilarious. Camp 2, this article is cherry picked small incidents and is mostly garbage journalism. PICK YOUR FIGHTER. Like most things, I assume the truth is in the middle, where nobody wants to hang out. Nobody loves moderates. Moderates are cowards.

I’m under the impression at this point where there is smoke there is fire (ALL TRADE RUMORS ARE TRUE DONT BE ME BEFORE OBJ FELLAS), but I do think the article glosses over the positives from the era because frankly that wasn’t the point of the article. The article’s point is to examine what went wrong, how it went wrong, and why it went wrong. So obviously it’s not going to talk about the times when McCarthy and Rodgers got along. The purpose of the piece is to try and see why they stopped. So people dismissing the article as extremely negative and ignoring all the good times are kind of missing the thesis here.

I do think that it does paint a picture of a more hostile work environment than existed. In many ways it sounded like it felt like living hell between these two dudes for over a decade. I doubt that was true. I wager Rodgers and McCarthy had their issues for sure but here’s the thing: winning cures that shit. It’s very easy to get past someone’s garbage when you two are working together and winning a lot. The Packers won a lot. Like 8 straight years in the playoffs a lot. The Packers got irritating. But when things start to crumble around them (like talent leaving, or stale development, etc), the wins begin to come less frequently and the little issues between egos crop back up and drive a wedge. I think that a lot of the negativity and hostility probably was rather prevalent in the Packers locker room, but only recently. I think it likely wasn’t a big deal at all back in the early aught-teens. Aught teens? Twenty-tens? What do we call this decade anyway?

I do believe the pictures painted of Rodger’s negatives as well as McCarthy’s issues are mostly accurate. A story like “Mike slipping away to get massages” is the kind of thing too specific to not be true in some way. Rodgers being petty and vindictive, egotistical and controlling? We’ve seen complaints of that from other people and Rodgers is so secretive about his private life we don’t really have much to go on as counter-examples. Rodgers came out pretty fast and offered an extremely strong denial and pushed back against the article and the bitter players who trashed him in it. I think his criticism of Jennings and Finley is fair. But his strong THIS IS BULLSHIT stance clapback to the article smearing the reporter for trying to advance his career felt…weirdly familiar to me. A distinct image popped up into my head. This one.

If you are a wee baby who doesn’t know that image let the child Orioles fan Dave tell you a story. Raphael Palmeiro is that man, and in that photo he is staunchly denying the allegations of steroid use. Out of all the players who were called to testify, only Palmeiro came across so fiercely opposed to the accusation. He said no with such conviction that, at the time, we all bought it. This later turned out to be a big fat lie, and his staunch denial ended up doing more damage to his career in the end. It was pretty heartbreaking as a kid who loved Palmeiro. I wanted his mustache when I grew up. Raphael, if you are out there somewhere, I still think you are cool.

My point is, Rodger’s steadfast denial reminded me of that. Rodgers, and McCarthy for that matter, currently have zero incentive to agree with that article in any way. It is entirely within their best interest to call it crap. They gain nothing admitting they are petty or lazy. There’s also very little chance anyone could ever prove otherwise. The article does paint a very negative image while trying to understand what helped cause the downfall of the relationship and maybe it is wrong to use this as gospel on either man, because there were undoubtedly good times and quality cooperation towards a common goal.