The Green Bay Packers and reigning NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers could potentially be headed to a standstill. By now, it’s well known that Rodgers questioned his own future with the Packers after their loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC Championship Game back in January.
It led to some speculation that Rodgers might be traded this offseason, especially given that Green Bay is less than a calendar year removed from selecting fellow quarterback Jordan Love in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.
To make matters even more interesting, Green bay has yet to restructure Rodgers’ contract. Said move would have saved room under the 2021 NFL salary cap. It also would have linked the Packers to their longtime quarterback beyond the 2021 season from a financial perspective.
In turn, Rodgers reportedly wants some type of long-term commitment from the Packers. Coming off the best performance of his career, who can blame the future first ballot Hall of Famer? Apparently, the Packers are not willing to do that. President and CEO Mark Murphy pretty much made that clear in a Q&A with reporters on Tuesday without really saying anything.
Later in the media season, Murphy refused to answer a question about this being comparable to the Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers situation back in 2005. Remember, Favre started for three seasons before Rodgers eventually took over. It led to an ugly divorce between Favre and the Packers.
This comes months after the Packers’ front office head made it clear Rodgers fit into the team’s plans for both the 2021 season and over the long term. He’s no longer making said commitment.
What is happening with Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers?
Well, it’s pretty obvious that Green Bay’s brass wants to keep any potential rift private. It also seems clear that things are not going too swimmingly behind the scenes between the two.
Aaron Rodgers’ stats tell us a story of someone who is still playing at an elite level. Last season saw him complete a league-best 70.7% of his passes for 4,299 yards with 48 touchdowns against just five interceptions. He ended up winning his third career NFL MVP award.
With that said, the writing could be on the wall here. Playing under a four-year, $134 million contract, Rodgers is set to count $37.20 million against the cap in 2021.
Green Bay can get out of said deal by trading Rodgers next offseason while saving north of $22 million against the cap. A restructure would have saved room against the 2021 NFL salary cap. But it would have also linked Rodgers to Green Bay financially over the long-term. Apparently, the Packers were not willing to make that decision.
The major backdrop here is Jordan Love’s perceived status as the Packers’ quarterback of the future. He’s yet to throw a pass in either a preseason or regular-season game. Even then, Green Bay might be relying on him to be the starter in 2022 depending on how the Rodgers’ situation plays out.
Based on Murphy’s lack of candidness, it seems like something of percolating behind the scenes in Green Bay. As we’ve seen with Russell Wilson in Seattle and Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, this could lead to speculation that a divorce might be coming sooner rather than later.