Aaron Rodgers & Davante Adams: 'They're the best at what they do'

Historic milestones by both Packers stars only part of their brilliance

Packers WR Davante Adams hands QB Aaron Rodgers the ball involved in Rodgers' 400th NFL touchdown pass.

GREEN BAY – He's the fastest quarterback to 400 touchdowns, with the fewest interceptions, and he's not done yet.

"I'm going to see if I can get to 500 before I throw 100 picks," Aaron Rodgers said after Sunday's win.

He wasn't exactly kidding, either.

With three touchdown passes in the 30-16 victory over the Eagles at Lambeau Field, Rodgers got to 400 in 193 regular-season games, 12 fewer than the next-fastest (Drew Brees, 205).

He also got there having thrown just 88 interceptions, the only one of the seven members of the 400 club with less than 100 picks at the milestone.

Having turned 37 this past week, No. 400 came dressed with some fitting, photogenic moments for Rodgers.

First, receiver Davante Adams caught it, and Adams had caught Rodgers' 200th six years ago as a rookie for the receiver's first career score. So Adams has that ball, but he made sure to hand deliver this one to Rodgers during an impromptu, down-to-one-knee celebration in the end zone.

"This'll be the first one out of those (milestone TDs) that I'll actually get the ball," Rodgers said, "assuming I can find it in (longtime equipment manager) Red Batty's back closet somewhere."

Second, No. 400 capped Rodgers' first 99-yard drive for a touchdown in 11 years – an impressive possession that began with a 42-yard downfield strike from his own end zone to, who else, Adams.

Backed up on their own 1-yard line early in the third quarter with a 13-3 lead, Rodgers and Head Coach Matt LaFleur briefly discussed going for broke. It was a quick conversation.

"(I did) not necessarily lobby for it, but I definitely OK'd it," Rodgers said with a smile. "He said, 'You good with this one?' I said yeah, yeah, definitely like that one.

"Matt will do that sometimes just to kind of gauge my comfort with certain plays. I was all on board for that one."

What unfolded encapsulated the brilliance of Rodgers and Adams.

Off play-action, Adams went deep down the middle and Rodgers let it fly. As two Eagles defenders converged, the ball dropped right between them and into the hands of a sliding and practically blinded Adams. The degree of difficulty of the catch looked like it broke the scale.

"I have no idea how he caught that ball," confessed Rodgers, who heard the Packers' sideline erupt when the grab was made. "I just shook my head and came back and said, 'How the hell did you catch that ball?'"

The key was those hands, which never gave away the ball was coming, so the pursuers couldn't reach to try for a lucky deflection. It's a technique Adams has mastered called "late hands," only this time Rodgers said it was "really, really late hands."

"There's no coverage for the perfect ball and for the perfect reception," LaFleur said. "And that's exactly what happened because that play happened right in front of me and it might be one of the most spectacular catches I've ever seen."

Lambeau Field hosted a Week 13 matchup between the Green Bay Packers and Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020.

Adams hit some milestones of his own Sunday, tying a career high with his 13th TD reception on the season and surpassing 1,000 yards for the second time in his career – playing in just 10 of 12 games thus far.

He also caught a TD pass for a seventh straight game, tying a team record set by Don Hutson back in the 1940s. That one he called "crazy," a good word to describe how well he's playing this year.

"He's a great one, and he's got a great quarterback throwing to him as well, which definitely helps, there's no doubt about it," LaFleur said. "Those guys are two phenomenal players. You could argue they're the best at what they do.

"It's not just every now and again. It feels like it's every game."

Sunday was Adams' fifth game this season with 100-plus yards and his fourth with double-digit receptions. He'll need 28 catches for 490 yards over the last four games to reach the franchise's single-season records held by Sterling Sharpe (112 receptions) and Jordy Nelson (1,519 yards), respectively.

As with Rodgers, it might not be wise to bet against him.

The quarterback made history another way Sunday, reaching 36 TD passes on the season to become the first QB in league history with five different seasons of 35-plus TDs.

"I'm not sure how long I'll be able to hold onto the second one," he said. "There's some really good young quarterbacks I'm guessing are amassing some numbers in that vicinity. But it does speak to the consistency over a long period of time that I'm very proud of."

His statistical stamp on the game might be getting to 500 TDs with less than 100 interceptions if he can do it. How realistic is it? Well, he threw 14 interceptions between TDs 300 and 400, so getting to 500 before 12 more picks can't be ruled out.

"Like my man Kevin Garnett said, 'Anything's possible,'" Rodgers said. "I think that would be sweet. I haven't necessarily identified that as a goal. I'm just living in the moment for this year, trying to enjoy it as much as possible.

"Hopefully I'll still be playing to have 500, but we'll see."

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