The Green Bay Packers appear to be in no rush to trade star quarterback Aaron Rodgers to the New York Jets, and if a deal doesn’t get done before the 2023 NFL Draft, there are plenty of teams that could be interested in swooping in for a blockbuster deal.
With less than a week until the draft, both sides continue to be dug in on trade negotiations, with ESPN’s Adam Schefter sharing that there’s a very real possibility that negotiations drag on past the three-day event. That would mean that the Packers would have to wait until 2024 and beyond to take advantage of any draft assets they received in a potential trade.
The Packers are currently asking for a second-round pick this year and a first-round pick in 2024. However, Jets owner Woody Johnson has gotten cold feet after Rodgers shared on The Pat McAfee Show that he was leaning towards retirement this offseason.
If the Packers are more interested in getting draft picks immediately for the Jordan Love era, a handful of teams would make sense. Bleacher Report’s Brad Gagnon shared a list of four teams that could take advantage of the situation and make a move for Rodgers, citing the 49ers, Lions, Titans, and Commanders as potential landing spots for the 39-year-old future Hall of Famer.
Two Teams Have Already Been Linked to Rodgers
Gagnon provided a couple of surprise teams when talking about potential landing spots for Rodgers, but the other two have already been discussed in rumors heading into this year’s draft.
The 49ers are the most obvious non-Jets contender for Rodgers, who grew up rooting for the team having grown up near the Bay Area. FS1’s Craig Carthon shared that the 49ers are ready to pursue Rodgers if a deal falls through, apparently being willing to offer multiple third-round picks this year along with a first-round pick in 2024.
Speculation has reached a fever pitch between Rodgers and the 49ers now that multiple teams have inquired about trading for San Francisco’s young quarterback in Trey Lance. With Lance possibly on the move and Brock Purdy recovering from an elbow injury, that leaves the 49ers with Sam Darnold as the likely Week 1 starter. For a team that’s built to win a Super Bowl right now, taking a big swing on Rodgers would make a lot of sense.
The Titans have also been linked to Rodgers in a rumor that was picked up by multiple outlets despite uncertain credibility regarding the source. While Rodgers would be an upgrade over Ryan Tannehill, new Titans general manager Ron Carthon has been busy shedding salary cap and moving on from veterans for what appears to be a rebuilding year in 2023. Adding Rodgers wouldn’t make sense for Tennessee unless they believes he would keep playing beyond this upcoming season.
The Potential Surprise Rodgers Landing Spots
While the 49ers and Titans had already been linked to Rodgers, Gagnon came up with some surprising names as potential landing spots for the four-time MVP.
Gagnon suggested an inter-division trade with the Detroit Lions to move on from Rodgers. While the 39-year-old would likely be interested in playing for a legitimate contender, along with a chance to play the Packers twice in the regular season, the move would give a long-time rival an immediate advantage in the NFC North. Still, Gagnon provided some fair reasoning as to why a trade would be possible.
“Green Bay would certainly be reluctant to trade Rodgers to a division rival like Detroit, but the team is somewhat cornered at the moment and would likely feel the need to get Rodgers off the books if he becomes/continues to be stubborn about his future outside of Wisconsin,” Gagnon said. “Plus, with the No. 6 pick, the No. 18 selection and two second-round picks in next week’s draft, the Lions have more draft capital to spare than anyone else in the league right now.”
The Commanders were the last team Gagnon mentioned, with a stout defense and an appealing top wideout in Terry McLaurin for Rodgers to throw to. However, the Commanders currently have just $2.4 million in cap space for 2023, and it would take some serious tinkering from both teams in order to facilitate a trade financially.
The Jets remain the favorite to land Rodgers, but the longer this goes without a trade being finalized, the more teams are going to start calling the Packers to try and swoop in.