Yet, for all of the attention Rodgers will get as he becomes the first Packer other than Brett Favre to start under center since Sept. 27, 1992, the outcome of the juicy lid lifter between fierce NFC North rivals should be decided in the trenches.
For that, the Vikings come in to Lambeau Field with a decided advantage.
Not only will the Packers have to try to keep Adrian Peterson from running wild with a defensive line that left a lot to be desired in the preseason, they will counter with uncertainty at running back and on the offensive line against Minnesota's dominant front four.
The return of run stuffer Ryan Pickett to the defensive lineup has been tempered by further injury woes for center Scott Wells.
Wells, a solid anchor for the line the last three seasons, aggravated a muscle strain in his lower back a week before the season opener. Wells, who missed most of the preseason with the injury, isn't expected to play. That puts the Packers in a tenuous situation as they get ready to match up with a defensive line that added Pro Bowl end Jared Allen to the rugged two-headed-tackle monster of Kevin Williams and Pat Williams.
"Probably the best defensive tackle tandem that we will play," Packers head coach Mike McCarthy said.
Even without Wells, McCarthy is optimistic his unstable line can respond to the daunting challenge. The Packers preached and practiced versatility throughout the preseason, cross-training their interior linemen at two, three, sometimes four positions as a way to protect the offense in emergency situations.
Still, the inconsistencies shown in the past by the projected starting trio of left guard Daryn Colledge, center Jason Spitz and right guard Tony Moll, coupled with not knowing what they have in Ryan Grant at halfback for the here and now, are unsettling for a team trying to build off last year's 14-4 finish.
Grant hasn't taken a significant hit since the Packers' 23-20 overtime loss to the New York Giants in the NFC Championship Game on Jan. 20.
Grant, who emerged as the top rusher in the league the second half of last season, didn't participate in any offseason workouts with the team and missed the first week of training camp because of a contract stalemate. Once signed to a lucrative deal, he promptly suffered a pulled hamstring in practice and missed the first three preseason games. He was cleared for the final exhibition contest Aug. 28, but he was removed from the game after Rodgers threw a long touchdown pass to Greg Jennings on the game's first play.
"He hasn't had a lot of work. That's a legitimate concern," McCarthy said this week.
To ease Grant back into game action, McCarthy doesn't want to give him more than 20 carries. So, Brandon Jackson, who struggled as a rookie most of last season, will be counted on to pick up some of the slack Monday.
Peterson will be the focal point out of the backfield for the Green Bay defense.
Last year's rookie sensation has to be licking his chops to run with frequency against the Packers' vulnerable defensive cast.
Having the hefty Pickett back to clog up the middle is a plus, but as with Grant, the Packers coaching staff can't expect great things to occur overnight.
Pickett missed the entire preseason with a hamstring injury. For all of the unpleasant conditioning he was put through the last five weeks, Pickett acknowledged he will suit up Monday not close to being in optimum football shape.
"I can go four quarters. Sometimes, it might take me eight weeks to get in football shape," Pickett said with a smile. "(But) I'm good. I'm going to be ready to go."
A year after defensive tackle was a position of strength for the team, Green Bay kept only three tackles on the 53-man roster for the start of this season. Behind Pickett and Johnny Jolly is Colin Cole. With disappointing 2007 first-round draft pick Justin Harrell on the PUP list after undergoing a second operation for a balky back, the Packers are resigned to tapping into the flexibility of starting end Cullen Jenkins and reserve Mike Montgomery to slide inside in passing situations.
The unknowns for how the Packers will fare both running the football and stopping the run Monday aren't lost on McCarthy.
"The run game - both offense and defense - it's about attitude and fundamentals," he said. "So, when things did go right (in the preseason), those were in place. When they didn't go right, it was not in place."
SERIES HISTORY: 95th meeting. Packers lead series, 48-45-1. The Packers have won the last four meetings - their longest winning streak in the series since they also won four straight in 1987 and ‘88. The division rivals have met only once in the postseason, a 31-17 victory by Minnesota in an NFC wild-card game at Green Bay during the 2004 season.
Defensive tackle Pat Williams and defensive end Jared Allen, acquired by the Vikings in an offseason trade with Kansas City, were excessively outspoken at the time as they looked ahead to the Green Bay-Minnesota season opener, which is Monday night.
In an interview with Yahoo! Sports, Williams proclaimed: "I'm glad (the Packers) got all that darn press (during the Favre saga), ‘cause when we go down there it'll be the kid's (Rodgers) first start and his first damn loss."
Allen, meanwhile, was more personal with his candor, saying, "Playing Green Bay on Monday night to start the season - that's everything you want. Hopefully, I can put my helmet square in the back of (Rodgers') spine. If I can do that and knock the ball loose, it'll be a good day." Rodgers claimed this week he hadn't heard what was being said by the Vikings about him or the Packers. As he prepares to make his first NFL start after serving as Favre's understudy the last three seasons, Rodgers refused to get caught up in the trash talking, instead saying only nice things about his upcoming opponents, including Allen.
"Hey, he's a great player, and we're going to have to block him," Rodgers said.
Playing nice off the field has been the modus operandi for Rodgers and his teammates. Packers head coach Mike McCarthy has been impressed by how his young club has gone "about their business."
Rodgers suggested he wouldn't use the harsh comments out of Minnesota as incentive to play well Monday.
"I don't need any extra motivation," he said. "I've got plenty of motivation being the quarterback for this team and trying to get us in good situations and trying to be efficient on Monday night."
Backup Colin Cole was issued a speeding ticket in Fond du Lac (Wis.) County during Labor Day weekend, when the players were off. Cole, 28, was cited for driving 88 mph in a 65-mph zone.
Cole told a sheriff's department deputy that he didn't think he was driving so fast. Cole also reportedly was shocked to have received the speeding ticket after he tried to talk his way out of it by offering to show an ID card to prove he's an NFL player.
He reportedly told the officer that "he gets stopped all the time in Green Bay and doesn't get a ticket because he plays for the Green Bay Packers."
The officer, in turn, told Cole, "We don't give warnings at 88 mph."
Starting tackle Johnny Jolly was arrested July 8 in Houston on a felony drug possession charge. Jolly, who allegedly was in possession of at least 200 grams of codeine, had a court hearing postponed from Aug. 27 to Sept. 16, which will be a usual Tuesday off-day for the players.
He gave the players three days off following their preseason finale against Tennessee on Aug. 28. The team reconvened Monday for two days of extra practices, then had Wednesday off.
The Packers will pick up with a conventional three-day preparation phase for the game on Thursday and practice through Saturday.
Green Bay has yet to lose a Monday night opener.
The Packers are 2-3 against Minnesota in season openers. They last met in Week 1 in 2003, when the Vikings prevailed 30-25 at Lambeau Field.
BY THE NUMBERS: 1956 — The last year the Packers had a layoff as much as 10 days between their final preseason game (Aug. 28) and their season opener (Sept. 8). Green Bay was off for 14 days following the end of the preseason to its Sept. 30 season opener against Detroit in 1956 - the Packers lost that game 20-16 at home.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "Running out of the tunnel for three years, and now I get to be THE guy coming out, it's going to be electric Monday night. A great experience, a great challenge for us on offense facing a really good defense. We're going to put together a good week of practice, and hopefully, we put a good product on the field on Monday." — Aaron Rodgers, the Packers' first-round draft pick in 2005, on looking forward to his first official start as an NFL quarterback as the replacement for the legendary Brett Favre.