“People have sort of said well look they don’t really need to do it until they get close to training camp. Rodgers is not a guy who is going to be in the offseason program the whole time blah blah blah. I say well wait a minute because the NFL can’t release its schedule seriously until Aaron Rodgers is a Jet.
That’s why in my opinion there’s no way this goes much past the draft. I think it’ll go before the draft because obviously the Jets are going to want to know and Green Bay is going to want to know. Green Bay is going to want that second-round pick off the Jets in 2023. I think it gets done before the draft.”
The NFL releases the schedule for the 2023 season in May. In theory, if this Packers-Jets trade for Rodgers wasn’t complete by then, the league would have to act blindly not knowing the result.
The reason that would be significant is because Rodgers on the Jets is likely going to equate to a large number of primetime games next season. New York wouldn’t receive that same love if A-Rod wasn’t coming.
That could lead to the NFL stepping in to help move a trade along between the Packers and the Jets for Rodgers.
The NFL Helped Make a Jets Trade Happen in the Past
If you think the NFL stepping in to make a trade happen between two teams is crazy, it actually has happened before.
As Zack Rosenblatt of The Athletic documented in an article posted on Friday, April 7.
“It wouldn’t be the first time the NFL stepped in to help speed along a negotiation for the Jets. In 1997, the Jets and Patriots were locked in a dispute for Bill Parcells, who was set to become Jets head coach but was still technically under contract with New England. NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue stepped in to mediate and was able to broker a deal.”
Tagliabue was able to settle the differences and both sides reached a solution via trade.
New York Jets receive: head coach Bill Parcells
New England Patriots receive: a 1999 first-round pick, a 1998 second-round pick, a 1997 third-round pick, a 1997 fourth-round pick, and $300,000 donated to the Patriots’ charitable foundation.
The big bone of contention between the Patriots and the Jets was about New York’s first-round draft choice in 1998. New England wanted it and New York didn’t want to give it up.
Ironically enough the Patriots ended up getting that first-round pick anyway after future Pro Football Hall of Fame running back Curtis Martin signed an offer sheet with the Jets as a restricted free agent.
“Ultimately, there were wide differences on how this would have to be resolved,” Tagliabue said via the LA Times in 1997. “But ultimately, we got it resolved.”
Zack Rosenblatt Shared His Take on Jets-Packers-Aaron Rodgers Conspiracy Theory
Despite something similar happening in the past and the interesting NFL scheduling nugget, Rosenblatt doesn’t believe the league will step in this time around.
“No, the NFL won’t intercede in this case, despite the salient scheduling point. The NFL typically announces the season schedule in early May (after the NFL Draft) and obviously, Rodgers will swing national interest in the Jets quite a bit. Peter King estimated recently that they could have five prime-time games, including in Week 1. Ideally — for the Packers, Jets, and NFL — the trade will be resolved before schedule-release time. Even if not, I imagine the NFL will approach the scheduling as if Rodgers is already with the Jets. Eventually, this trade will happen. Hopefully soon.”
It behooves all sides to get this trade done as soon as possible.
The Jets would have Aaron Rodgers and can work to complete the rest of its offseason. Rodgers himself would no longer be swaying in the wind. Most importantly of which the Packers would have assets to immediately invest around Jordan Love.
If it doesn’t happen before the schedule release, as Rosenblatt mentioned, the league will have to assume that Rodgers will eventually land in New York.
Although if for some reason he doesn’t, it appears Zach Wilson would get plenty of primetime opportunities to prove whether or not he’s the guy in 2023.