One of the MANY reasons that I love my soon-to-be wife is that she grew up a Packers fan but tried as she did to become a Minnesota Vikings fan for me, she still secretly roots for the Pack. That shows loyalty, even if it means loyalty to a franchise that I loathe almost as much as any other (Saints). I bring this up not to humble brag that someone decided to dedicate their life to me, but because early in our relationship she said something that made me fall even harder for her than I already had.
“Morbid obesity doesn’t bother me”. Wait, that was before I paid to have her relocate to the US from a former Soviet Union stronghold. What she actually said was “I love the Packers, but they do get A LOT of bull shit calls”.
A Packers fan who admits that the Packers, or namely Aaron Rodgers (something he inherited from Brett Favre) get a lot of help from officials?
I know. I should’ve gotten a picture/video of that moment, like a Big Foot hunter who “accidentally left the lens cap on their camera”.
I’ve touched on this, and how Rodgers implying there was a conspiracy AGAINST the Packers early on in the 2020 season was bad for his legacy.
I also covered what each NFL fanbase complains about the most.
It isn’t a coincidence that the Chicago Bears, the Packers’ other rival, are the fourth most whiny fan-base. What do they complain about most? Bad officiating. What do Packers fans complain about most? They use a victim mentality.
Now, I should note that the Vikings (and Lions) also landed the victim mentality complaint but I think that the broad definition of that complaint can mean different things for different teams.
The Vikings? Feel victimized by six decades of heartbreak as a franchise that is in the top five for regular season winning percentage but have never won it all, or even been to the big game in my lifetime (and as my fiancé will also remind me every time I get a nose bleed by attempting to keep up with TikTok, I’m old).
The Lions feel victimized because their team is the Lions. I mean, Barry Sanders and Calvin Johnson, arguably two of the best to ever do it at their position, straight up quit in the middle of their prime because they couldn’t handle being a Lion anymore.
The Packers, meanwhile, have had two of the best quarterbacks of all-time back-to-back from 1992 through the writing of this article. Sure, that’s “only” amounted to one Super Bowl victory a piece, but their complaints and victimhood status comes from a completely different place than ours does.
It’s like the rich kid in your school crying because his dad got him a BMW for his sweet 16 instead of a Mercedes, when you were just kinda disappointed when the Pontiac Fiero your dad got off Craigslist for helping some random install a toilet started on fire on your way to prom.
See what I mean?
So forgive me if I don’t have sympathy for the Packers fans who time and time again mock Vikings/Bears/Lions fans when we point out their gilded protection from the league. A league, as I pointed out in the article above, that created a brand new rule for Aaron Rodgers when his collar bone broke (again) after he was ROUTINELY tackled by Anthony Barr.
Rodgers went on Conan to talk about his injury and imply that Barr had driven him into the turf. But because he’s Rodgers, the league created a rule that basically made it incredibly hard to tackle a quarterback (even when they’re technically a runner, as Rodgers was).
But when a call didn’t go his way in November, the league somehow called the refs on the field within seconds to purposefully screw them over?
The crux of their complaint today stems from this play:
PI was called. Yes or no? pic.twitter.com/dMk3u8lnUh
— NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) January 24, 2021
Now, I don’t know how anyone could argue that that wasn’t pass interference considering former Gophers wide receiver Tyler Johnson’s jersey/undershirt were grabbed not once, but twice.
The complaint, I guess, is that the refs let a lot of stuff go earlier in the game in a “let them play” sort of ambiance. However, if you break down this argument to it’s purest form, you’re essentially saying “I’m mad that the refs, who were ignoring clear penalties earlier in the game, decided to enforce THIS clear penalty because of how impactful the outcome was”.
I mean, come on.
If anything, you should argue that the refs should’ve made MORE calls, not less? Because you’re essentially just saying that they should’ve ignored an obvious penalty because the impact hurt your chances to win.
The flipside of that is that had they not called it, the Buccaneers fans would say that the refs allowed the aggressor/Packers to get away with obvious pass interference because for some reason they decided to stop enforcing rules?
It’s a losing argument regardless of how you slice it, and additionally falls on deaf ears considering who is making that argument. The fan base that has arguably benefited from officiating more than any other team in the league.
I seem to recall… Every Packers fan ever telling Vikings/Bears fans that if it came down to one play we should be mad that it came down to that play. That we should’ve done more to win so one flag wouldn’t affect the outcome so disproportionately. That of course we blame the refs because we can’t compete.
If I was a Packers fan, and the Vikings just lost to the Bucs, I’d say “Blame the head coach for kicking a field goal instead of going for it on 4th-and-goal with the best offense in the league”.
It sounds like Packers fans are actually mad about that, too, so they’re not completely without self awareness. But from the looks of it they may end up moving up on the 2021 list of whiny fan-bases.
Meanwhile I’ll be here in my Fiero.