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Aaron Rodgers v Tom Brady II showed a supporting cast is (nearly) everything

Much was made of Sunday’s contest between two of the best players of all time. But the Patriots quarterback has always had a strong team to complement him

The Green Bay Packers faced the New England Patriots on Sunday night and there was a bit of a buzz, a sense that fans were about to see something rare. It was only the second head-to-head meeting between Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady, which just seems wrong considering that Brady is (a surprisingly agile) 41 years of age and it’s been a decade since the 34-year-old Rodgers’s first full year as a NFL starting quarterback. Rodgers, in fact, had never played at Gillette Stadium before. The 31-17 New England win may have told us something about where these two teams are, but it didn’t end up being anything resembling a referendum on the two quarterbacks themselves.

Part of the reason for the fact that this was only their second meeting is that the two quarterbacks, who share five MVPs between them, have been on the same teams (and different conferences) for their entire careers. It’s an accident of history, a side effect of teams knowing they had found their franchise quarterbacks and not letting them go. There was some thought that considering the success that both players have had, that they would meet in a Super Bowl. That has yet to happen. Despite the fact that Rodgers has consistently been one of the best players in the league, the Packers have only appeared in one Super Bowl with him as their starter, their 31-25 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV. As it is, the only Rodgers/Brady game we had before last night was a regular season meeting back in November 2014 when the Packers snapped a Patriots eight-game win streak.

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