Aaron Rodgers, Packers at crossroads as trade remains possible


An off-season trade of Aaron Rodgers remains an option for the Green Bay Packers for several reasons, league sources told ESPN.

A scenario that once seemed unthinkable, a trade from Rodgers could be driven by financial reasons, the state of the Packers franchise, and ultimately the feelings of the team and the star quarterback.

League sources believe the franchise prefers to move forward with Rodgers, just as it once did with Brett Favre. Those sources also believe that Rodgers is well aware of the Packers’ feelings about the situation.

Rodgers said during an interview with “The Pat McAfee Show” last week that he is “open to all honest and direct conversations” with the Packers and that a trade “wouldn’t offend me, and it wouldn’t make me feel like a victim.” .”

Rodgers also noted in the interview that a possible trade is currently “guessing” until he decides what he wants to do “go ahead for myself.”

But regardless of Rodgers’ decision, changes are coming to Green Bay – it’s just a matter of how extensive they will be. Rodgers himself joked during the interview, “Is it a reload or a rebuild?”

The Packers are currently expected to raise more than $16 million above next season’s salary cap and have a roster of free agents imminent, including some of Rodgers’ close friends on the team: Randall Cobb, Marcedes Lewis, Robert Tonyan, Allen Lazard and Mason Crosby.

Aaron Jones will also have a $20 million cap, and the Packers could save $10.4 million off the cap if they lowered or traded the running star. Green Bay could also save $16 million if it designated Jones as a post-June 1 discount.

So this is a Packers franchise at a crossroads – none more so than at quarterback, where Rodgers is due $59.5 million in guaranteed money this year and another $49.25 million in 2024.

The Packers used a very complex contract structure with Rodgers when the sides agreed on an extension last offseason. Of the guaranteed money due to Rodgers in 2023, $58.3 million is structured as an option bonus. The window to exercise that option is from the first day of the new league year (March 15) to one day before the opening of Green Bay’s regular season in September.

Including that option bonus in Rodgers’ contract gives both parties more than enough time to find a trading partner. Once the option is exercised, Rodgers’ limit number for 2023 would be $31,623,570.

While Rodgers has to pay nearly $110 million in guaranteed money over the next two years — money he’s not expected to walk away from — the Packers also have to decide quarterback Jordan Love’s fifth-year option that would be worth about $20 million. fully guaranteed as of May 1.

Love flashed cleanup in a game against Philadelphia last season, making 6 of 9 passes for 113 yards and a touchdown.

“They drafted my replacement, and if I hadn’t won two COVID MVPs, this conversation probably would have happened sooner,” Rodgers said during the interview on Tuesday. “But in a year where I’m not going to win an MVP, it allows all the different conjecture as to whether Jordan is ready and whether it’s time to move on.”

Rodgers, 39, ultimately has a big say in what he wants to do in 2023 — be it against Green Bay or another team, or retire. At no point during his remarks on “The Pat McAfee Show” or to reporters at the end of the season did Rodgers state that he would be back in Green Bay. In fact, his words and actions have shown the contrary.

Rodgers, who spent his entire 18-year career with the Packers, would be emotional on the field during the warmups leading up to Green Bay’s game at Lambeau Field against the Detroit Lions.

After the game, Rodgers declined Lions rookie wide receiver Jameson Williams’ request for his No. 12 jersey, saying, “I’m going to hold this one,” before leaving the field, looking up at the Lambeau crowd, and entering the tunnel. his arm wrapped around Cobb’s shoulder.

Rodgers tops a list of quarterbacks facing big off-season questions, including Tom Brady, Lamar Jackson, Derek Carr and Jimmy Garoppolo.

If this situation feels familiar to Green Bay, it should be. Favre was 38 years old when Green Bay traded him to the New York Jets and was 39 when he played his first season away from the Packers.

There would be significant league-wide interest in Rodgers’ services if the Packers decide to trade him.

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.


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