GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Earlier this month, we revealed our ESPN.com All-NFC North team as voted on by the four NFL Nation reporters who cover this division.
In that exercise, six Green Bay Packers were honored.
On Wednesday, ProFootballFocus.com unveiled its All-NFC North team. It also featured six members of the Packers, but it didn’t exactly match what was selected by our team of reporters.
However, PFF selected quarterback Aaron Rodgers, running back Eddie Lacy and receiver Jordy Nelson. None of those three made the ESPN.com team, which included outside linebacker Clay Matthews and both specialists – kicker Mason Crosby and punter Tim Masthay.
In selecting Rodgers, who missed nearly half the season because of his broken collarbone, PFF’s Nathan Jahnke wrote: “There were definitely steps in the right direction made by Matthew Stafford, but it wasn’t enough to put him on the same level as Rodgers even though Rodgers missed a big part of the season. When healthy Rodgers is just too accurate a passer and for that reason he remains in his own class here.”
“While Adrian Peterson might be a better runner, and Matt Forte a better receiver, Eddie Lacy gets this spot for being the better all-around player,” Jahnke wrote. “Lacy was among the best runners in the league and became a larger part of the passing game as the season went on. He also was among the best pass blocking backs which is typically something rookies struggle with and also something that Peterson and Forte aren’t great at.”
“Even though some teams in the NFC North often use a second tight end or fullback, it was impossible to not include at least three wide receivers,” Jahnke wrote. “While Alshon Jeffery had an incredible sophomore season, the trio of Johnson, Marshall and Nelson were three of the top four rated wide receivers this year. If a team had all three of these receivers, I don’t know how they could lose.”
PFF did not pick Matthews, who missed five games because of a broken thumb. Instead, its linebackers were DeAndre Levy and Stephen Tulloch of the Lions (both of which were on our team) along with Minnesota’s Erin Henderson.
In all, 14 players made both our team and the one selected by PFF, which breaks down every play of every NFL game and assigns numerical ratings to every player each week.