Quarterback Aaron Rodgers has been relatively quiet about his immediate plans for both the Green Bay Packers and the NFL in general since his year ended, but no longer.
Rodgers made his weekly appearance on The Pat McAfee Show on Tuesday, January 31, during which he offered a timeline for his ultimate decision on whether to retire, and whether to ask for a trade out of Green Bay should he return.
“It’s going to be a little bit more time for my decision, and I feel confident that in a couple weeks I’ll feel definitely more strongly about one of the two decisions,” Rodgers told McAfee.
Packers Discuss Rodgers’ Future Without QB, Adding Fuel to Reports Green Bay Will Move on
While Rodgers holds a good deal of power as one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game, where he plays will not be entirely up to him should he decide to return.
The Packers have made their intention to move on from Rodgers somewhat clear in multiple ways over the last week. First, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported last Sunday that “league sources believe the franchise prefers to move on from Rodgers” and “those sources also believe that Rodgers is well aware of the Packers’ feelings on the situation.”
The second indication came from Rodgers himself on Tuesday, when he appeared to reference Schefter’s reporting, thereby lending it even more creedence.
“It sounds like there are already conversations going on that aren’t involving me, which is interesting,” Rodgers told McAfee. “I’m not a part of those conversations right now. When I make up my mind, one way or another, then you guys and the Packers — not in that order — and everybody else will know.”
Tom Brady’s Retirement Opens Up More Trade Windows For Packers, Rodgers
If Green Bay does part ways with Rodgers, that means two things: the Jordan Love era is clear to begin and that a trade involving Rodgers is imminent, as there is no other way for the Packers to get off of his monstrosity of a contract.
Trade windows to the New York Jets and the Las Vegas Raiders were already open to a degree, but the demand for Rodgers across the league went up significantly on Wednesday with the announcement from Tom Brady that he is retiring from the NFL.
Brady was among the most likely targets for the Raiders this offseason, as well as for the San Francisco 49ers should that franchise decide to add a veteran to its mix of young, injured talent under center.
With Brady off the board, both Rodgers’ and the Packers’ positions grow stronger in any hypothetical trade discussions. Derek Carr is almost certain to leave Las Vegas and Kirk Cousins of the Minnesota Vikings could also be an option if the team decides to reset at QB and trade his one-year, $35 million contract.
Even still, with Brady now out of the mix, Rodgers is by far the most accomplished of all the potential free agent and trade candidates at quarterback this offseason. With less supply at the position will come higher demand, which means Green Bay’s leverage to bring back at least a first-round pick in return for Rodgers just got a whole lot better.