GREEN BAY – As a young quarterback, Aaron Rodgers always had the same gameday routine.
He’d come into the building, put on his shoulder pads, pants and jersey, and then page through the gameday program Packers equipment manager Gordon “Red” Batty and his staff placed in every player’s locker.
Rodgers often thumbed through the articles and historical lookbacks before landing on the page containing all the Packers’ passing records, most of which belonged to Brett Favre. Then, after a few years as a starter, Rodgers began noticing his own name popping up in black ink, symbolizing a current player.
Even then, Favre’s colossal career statistics seemed so far away.
“I remember looking at the number of touchdowns that Favrey had and thinking, ‘Oh my God, I’m not even at 100 yet,'” Rodgers recalled on Wednesday. “‘How could I ever play long enough to be in this same category as that?'”
Well, he did. After three MVP awards and nearly 14 years as the starting QB in Green Bay, Rodgers now finds himself just three touchdowns away from Favre’s franchise record of 442.
Despite a lingering toe injury, the 38-year-old quarterback is coming off one of his best performances of the season this past Sunday during the Packers’ 45-30 win over the Chicago Bears.
With 341 passing yards and four touchdowns, Rodgers extended his NFL record to seven games with four or more TDs without an interception against a single opponent, the most in NFL history. He also surpassed Favre in career TD passes vs. Chicago, with 61 in 27 games, compared to Favre’s 60 in 36.
As Rodgers nears the end of an unprecedented 17th regular season with the Packers, the league’s reigning MVP understands the importance of the touchdown record he’s closing in on.
“That’s a special one just because of the history of the franchise and how long our franchise has been around and how many great players have come through here,” Rodgers said. “And the opportunity to be here 17 years, and the longevity records as Favrey I remember used to talk about when he was here, to be a part of some of those is pretty cool.”
Here is a look at some of Rodgers’ greatest regular-season touchdowns that have him on the precipice of achieving even more history.
1: Greg Jennings, 11 yards, at Dallas (Nov. 29, 2007)
When shoulder and elbow injuries sidelined Favre for the remainder of the game, Rodgers was thrust into action just days before his 24th birthday. On Green Bay’s final drive of the first half, Rodgers threw his first NFL touchdown to Jennings for 11 yards to cap an eight-play, 74-yard scoring drive. While the Packers lost 37-27, Rodgers’ performance (18-of-26 for 201 yards and a touchdown, 104.8 passer rating) was an encouraging sign of the former first-round pick’s development and promise.