"They've been playing really well as a whole,"
Rodgers is talking about the Giants secondary, not the pass rush. A secondary that is the most improved unit on the team over the last 3 weeks. Yeah the pass rush is better, but looking at the last 2 games of the season the Giants had 11 sacks, 3 of them were coverage sacks. And against Atlanta, the Giants only had 2 sacks.... so one couild argue... that vs Atlanta it wasn't so much the pass rush, but the secondary that was the difference maker.
Part of that improvement is the Giants ability to defend the middle. Since much the Green Bay offense is predicated on timing routes, slants and curls, much of the current Giants defense matches up well in that regard. And then add in the bend but don't break ability of the Giants secondary, its understandable that Rodgers tells us "it's going to be a tough challenge".
Aaron Rodgers can get rid of the ball in 2.5 seconds in the face of pressure, he can scramble and he can run the ball. On first down Rodgers is likely to see the Giants base defenseive line, 2 DE's and 2 DE's. This group of guys will get pressure up the middle to not allow Rodgers to step up, while the DE's are supposed to contain the pocket. The Green Bay running game is not effective enough to make the 1st down run fake meaningful so it maybe up to Rodgers to get the ball out quickly. If this means Rodgers has to challenge the Giants much improved secondary, who defends the middle much better, look to see if Green Bay runs routes to the sideline. Since the Giants tend to use an inside out technique, they may be vunerable to the sideline outs. But.... if the Giants secondary is playing press man coverage, disrupting the receivers as they try and get off the line, will we see Aaron Rodgers throwing the ball away on first down, yeah he's smart and won't take the chance.
While facing 2nd or 3rd and long Rodgers may face 4 DE's, Rodgers may try and scramble, but remember Tuck, Osi and JPP are quick, and they will chase the QB across the field. On 3rd and long Rodgers will have to be more creative, scrambling for time to allow his receivers to get 12-16-18 yards downfield.
The Giants defense has picked it up and Aaron Rodgers and his receivers are going to have to equal the Giants improvement, or lose the game.