The Green Bay Packers historically haven’t gone after skill players early in the NFL draft during the Aaron Rodgers era. However, with a new quarterback likely starting under center in 2023, general manager Brian Gutekunst could break that trend and give Jordan Love an exciting player to throw to.
It wasn’t until 2022 that Rodgers finally threw a touchdown pass to a former first-round pick, and that was to veteran tight end Marcedes Lewis. Excluding the Love pick back in 2020, the last time the Packers took a skill player in the first round was Javon Walker in 2002.
That could change this year, according to Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox. In their NFL draft predictions, Knox expects the Packers to break that trend and take a wide receiver or tight end in the first round.
“The Packers need to find out what they have in Love, who is only under contract for two more seasons,” Knox said. “It would be extremely wise to upgrade his supporting cast, especially after losing both wideout Allen Lazard and tight end Robert Tonyan in free agency…For Green Bay, the 2023 season will be all about developing and evaluating Love. It would be a surprise to see them not draft with their quarterback in mind on April 27.”
Is Jordan Love Ready to Start?
It’s been a lot of waiting for Love, who has sat behind one of the greatest quarterback in NFL history. However, that wait may finally be coming to an end.
Love was selected with the 26th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft out of Utah State. The expectation was that Love would be the successor to Rodgers, but that plan was delayed after the superstar quarterback won back-to-back MVP awards in 2020 and 2021.
Now entering his fourth NFL season, Love has just one career start under his belt. Playing in a hostile environment against the Kansas City Chiefs back in 2021, Love struggled in a 13-7 loss, completing just 19 of 34 passes for 190 yards, one touchdown, and an interception.
It wasn’t until Week 12 of this past season that Love got to see extended playing time again, replacing an injured Rodgers late in the loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. He looked much more comfortable this time around, however, completing 6 of 9 passes for 113 yards and a TD.
Love has been waiting patiently, but that patience nearly ran out. The 24-year-old was considering a trade request if Rodgers was still the starting QB in 2023, but now it’s looking like Love will get his opportunity to prove himself next season.
Latest on Aaron Rodgers
Even if a trade has yet to be finalized, all signs are pointing towards Rodgers playing for the New York Jets in 2023.
The four-time MVP told The Pat McAfee Show that he plans on playing for the Jets next season. However, Rodgers also shared that he believes that Packers are dragging their feet on a trade in order to maximize compensation they receive from New York.
Even with trade talks at a stand still between the two teams, no one seems to be worried about a deal getting done. Former Packers receiver Allen Lazard, who just signed with the Jets, said that he has “no worry” about a trade getting done between the two teams for Rodgers.
It’s still unclear when a trade will be finalized, but it’s almost a certainty that Rodgers will be playing for the Jets in the near future.