Reports On Aaron Rodgers Wanting Out Of Green Bay

Uh-oh!

Jim Rome
April 30, 2021 - 12:05 pm
Aaron Rodgers

USA Today

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In the hours before the draft, there were multiple reports about a pair of big names. One was about some failed minor league baseball player wanting to play tight end in the NFL. And the others were about Aaron Rodgers.

There was this from Tom Pelissero: The 49ers reached out to the Packers on Wednesday about trading for Aaron Rodgers, but no formal offer was made and a source said there is a “zero percent chance” that Green Bay deals the reigning NFL MVP.

On the surface, that sounds kind of crazy. Why would the 49ers be taking a wild swing like that at Aaron Rodgers? Does that mean they didn’t really know who they wanted with the third pick?

Of course not. It means that they knew a lot more about the Rodgers situation than you did. Because here came the next info drop.

Let me read this to you from Adam Schefter: Reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers is so disgruntled with the Green Bay Packers that he has told some within the organization that he does not want to return to the team, league and team sources told ESPN on Thursday.

Holy crap. Now let’s pick out some key words from that sentence: Reigning MVP…so disgruntled…does not want to return to the team

I repeat, holy crap. Holy freaking crap. If you thought Packer fans were pissed yesterday when they were calling into the show, I can only imagine how their heads were exploding when that dropped.

And before you think this is just smoke, before you think this is just some crazy way to try to pressure the Packers into taking an offensive weapon in this year’s draft, check the next sentence from Schefter’s piece:

The Packers are aware of his feelings, concerned about them and have had team president Mark Murphy, general manager Brian Gutekunst and head coach Matt LaFleur each fly out on separate trips to meet with Rodgers at various points this offseason, sources told ESPN.

Quick question: what is higher than Defcon 1? Because whatever that is, that’s where the Packers should be right now.

And it sounds like they’ve been in that spot for a while over the offseason. And really since last year’s draft.

These guys are now flying all over the country to meet with Rodgers and win him back?

Look, let me get this out of the way right off the top: I like the Packers organization a lot. Some of my favorite interviews in the league are Packer players and that says something about the organization when it comes to personnel evaluation. They do a lot of things well.

But, and you knew a but was coming, but I will be honest – if you have to follow your franchise quarterback around the country like John Cusack holding a boom box over your head, playing Peter Gabriel’s In Your Eyes, something went wrong. Terribly, terribly wrong.

And I’m not going to say it all goes back to last year’s draft, but I’m willing to put a bunch of cheddar on the fact that a lot of it does.

I know what the Packers did last year in drafting Jordan Love has been talked about for an entire year. I spent most of this show the Friday after last year’s first round shaking my DAMN head OVER THAT MOVE, but as bad as that pick was at the time, it’s so much worse one year later.

We’re talking about a team that had reached the NFC championship game in Matt LaFleur’s first season and then got flattened by a truck named Raheem Mostert.

And instead of using the first pick to strengthen the defense or get more weapons for Aaron Rodgers, they drafted a quarterback. Patrick Queen was there. All he did was start 16 games and rack up triple digit tackles for the Ravens as a rookie. Chase Claypool was still there. He had 11 touchdowns for the Steelers as a rookie.

I could keep going, but suffice it to say, there were plenty of pieces on offense and defense available, and they went with a human clipboard holder.

It would be bad enough if they drafted Jordan Love where they did, but they didn’t. They traded up to get him. They gave up resources to get him. And I know the spin that the guys they really wanted were drafted before they could get them –

Cool, then don’t trade up to get a backup quarterback. Trade down. Get more picks. Find more help on defense or in the receiving game. Don’t just take a backup quarterback project in that spot because there was nobody else there.

That’s not an accident at the draft. That’s not handing in a card with the wrong name on it. That’s not the Vikings missing their pick back in the day.

It wasn’t an accident, it was a choice.

That was a choice they made and was agreed on by multiple people in a room. There were multiple people in a room who thought, we have a team that just went to the NFC championship game and could be a player or two away from a Super Bowl, we have one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history, let’s draft a backup quarterback.

Not a guy who can walk in and contribute immediately. A project. Let’s use a first-round pick on a project. And let’s trade up to get him.  Oh and lets’ definitely not tell our hall of fame quarterback that’s the plan: he can just go ahead and find out at the same time as everyone else. 

SO, The Packers created this mess a year ago, unnecessarily, and it’s only gotten worse. So much worse. They thought they were being SO CLEVER in planning for the long-term and INSTEAD MIGHT have ruined the present and near term. And burned a bridge forever with one of their all-time greats. 

That will never not be insane to me, and it’s only gotten more insane since then. Because not only did they not help out their team for 2020 and the years to come, but they permanently destroyed their relationship with Aaron Rodgers.

How could you not see that coming? How is that possible?

The whole reason you have a football team, the whole reason you are in the business of football, the entire reason why you spend millions of dollars and thousands of hours on evaluating prospects and doing draft prep, is so that you can get a guy like Aaron Rodgers.

And then you get him and you go out of your way to screw this up? How? Why? For who? For what?

No wonder the guy wants out. No wonder the guy is reportedly “disgruntled” with the organization. How did you think that was going to go?

And if you didn’t know, how did you not know? And you’ve had a whole year to fix it and you still haven’t been able to.

And honestly, if you don’t know how to fix it, that’s on you. I know that Rodgers is a different guy. But if he’s been on that team for 16 seasons and you don’t know what makes him tick or how to connect with him or how to make this right, that’s on you. That should be someone’s job. It should be multiple people’s jobs.

Just keep him happy and then sit back and cackle as he plays like an MVP and Hall of Famer. That’s it.

And if you were expecting them to pick an offensive player as a goodwill gesture in the first round last night, you were begging, they took cornerback Eric Stokes out of Georgia. 

And yes, they need help on defense, but they also needed help on defense last year, and they went with a backup quarterback.

And honestly, the GM’s comments yesterday DIDN’T HELP EITHER:

"I certainly look back to last year's draft and just kind of maybe some of the communication issues we could have done better. There's no doubt about it. The draft's an interesting thing. It can kind of unfold differently than you think it's going to unfold, and it happens pretty fast. But certainly, I think, looking back on it sitting where we sit today there could have been some communication things we did better."

Gee, ya think? You think looking back, you could’ve done it a little better? Because from where I’m sitting, the organization couldn’t have handled it any worse. And that’s not hindsight that was clear from the very moment the Love pick happened.

This is a win or lose league. In every situation, you either win or you lose. And right now, the Packers are losing this. Badly. They’re getting their asses kicked and they’re doing it to themselves.  I’d say they need to do whatever they have to do to make it right with this guy but from the looks of things, it may be too late: and they have no one to blame but themselves.  Because it should have never come to this in the first place. One of the best players made it clear he never wanted to play anywhere else and now he wants nothing to do with you: and that’s on you, not him.