Aaron Rodgers leads the Packers into a NFC divisional round playoff matchup against the 49ers.
To get back to the Super Bowl, Rodgers needs to beat the 49ers in the postseason for the first time. That will not be easy knowing the Packers won a 30-28 thriller in Week 3.
That’s going to bring out a career-long narrative involving the future Hall of Fame quarterback. Rodgers is a Chico, Calif., native who grew up rooting for the 49ers, and several of the key narratives about his NFL career with Green Bay have involved San Francisco.
Those moments will be conjured up again when the Rodgers-led Packers play the 49ers this week:
Aaron Rodgers record vs. 49ers
Including three postseason matchups, Rodgers has a 6-6 record against San Francisco in his career. That includes a 3-2 record at home.
Two of those games included Smith when he played for San Francisco. Green Bay won the first meeting with Rodgers as its starter 30-24 on Nov. 22, 2009 at Lambeau Field, but Smith returned the favor in a 30-22 victory in the same place on Sept. 9, 2012.
Of course, Rodgers is 0-3 against San Francisco in the postseason.
Rodgers and the Packers lost to the 49ers in the playoffs in back-to-back years following the 2012 and 2013 seasons, with both defeats coming at the hands of the quarterback-coach combination of Jim Harbaugh and Colin Kaepernick. Green Bay lost 45-31 at San Francisco in the 2012-13 divisional and 23-20 at Lambeau Field in the 2013-14 wild-card round.
The 2020 NFC championship game wasn’t much better. The 49ers led 27-0 at halftime and rushed for 285 yards in a 37-20 blowout. Rodgers finished 31 of 39 for 326 yards, two TDs and two interceptions in the loss. The 49ers lost Super Bowl LIV to the Kansas City Chiefs.
Rodgers won last two meetings with 49ers
Green Bay and San Francisco have met in the regular season the last two seasons. The Packers won 34-17 on Nov. 5, 2020 in a game that was moved because of COVID-19 concerns. Rodgers finished 25 of 31 for 305 yards and four TDs.
The teams also played a Sunday Night Football thriller in Week 3. San Francisco took a 30-28 lead with 37 seconds left, but Rodgers put the Packers in position to win, and Mason Crosby kicked a 51-yard field goal as time expired. Rodgers finished 23 of 33 for 261 yards and two TDs.
49ers snubbed Rodgers in 2005 NFL Draft
Rodgers could have been the No. 1 pick in the 2005 NFL Draft, but San Francisco chose Utah’s Alex Smith, instead.
That led to a long wait in the green room for Rodgers, who was the second quarterback taken with the No. 24 pick. Washington took Jason Campbell with the No. 25 pick to round out the first-round quarterbacks.
Rodgers took that draft snub as a slight. When asked about whether he was disappointed about that the 49ers didn’t draft him, Rodgers provided a response that is sure to get replayed a few times Monday.
Rodgers’ feud with former Packers coach Mike McCarthy involved 49ers
Mike McCarthy was the offensive coordinator of the 49ers in 2005, and he became the Packers coach in 2006. But Rodgers never forgot about San Francisco’s decision to draft Smith, a decision to which McCarthy contributed, even after Smith moved on to play for the Chiefs.
Take this example from Business Insider ahead of the 2015 season.
“We play Kansas City in Week 3,” McCarthy said. “We won’t make it through the first half of that week without him saying something. I’m certain.”
Rodgers and McCarthy had a deteriorating relationship at that point, and McCarthy was fired during the 2018 season. He is now the coach of the Cowboys.
Brett Favre had more success against 49ers
Everything Rodgers does in Green Bay gets compared to his predecessor Brett Favre, who was 11-1 against the 49ers while with the Packers (and 12-2 against them overall).
Favre tormented San Francisco with a 4-1 record in the postseason; his only loss came on Steve Young’s game-winning TD pass to Terrell Owens in the 30-27 thriller in the 1998-99 NFC wild-card game.
The Packers reached the Super Bowl twice with Favre, and they beat the 49ers in both of those playoff runs.
Rodgers can get Packers back to NFC championship game
Favre played in the NFC championship game four times in Green Bay, and he had a 2-2 record in those games. One of those victories was a 23-10 win against San Francisco in the 1998 NFC championship game. That is the only conference championship meeting between the franchises.
Rodgers is 1-4 in NFC championship games, and four of those matchups have been on the road. Green Bay is the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs for the second straight season, and they could potentially go through the 49ers and Buccaneers, who beat the Packers 31-26 in the NFC championship game last season. The 49ers were reportedly one of the teams interested in trading for Rodgers last offseason, according to multiple reports.
The NFC divisional matchup (8:15 p.m. ET Saturday, Jan. 22) will be a talking point, especially with the Packers at home.