As Green Bay Packers Aaron Rodgers prepares to leave his darkness retreat, I’m guessing he’s not going to like some of the headlines he reads upon his emergence.
The biggest bombshell over the past few days comes from Packers insider Bob McGinn—a reporter who has covered the Packers for 38 years before retiring from the daily beat in 2017. He still writes and opines for Go Long TD, and last week he joined Tyler Dunne to talk about Rodgers’ future.
He painted a vivid picture of a Packers team frustrated by Rodgers and ready to move on from the three-time league MVP.
“As of right now, I’m convinced—based on my own instincts and knowing the NFL and knowing what happens after all these defeats and discussions with someone who has firsthand knowledge of this organization, of the Packers’ internal debates—that they are done with Rodgers,” McGinn said. “That’s the way it is right now, that he’s not coming back. They’re disgusted with him and they’re done with him and they’re moving on.”
Last year was a bit of a disaster for the Packers and Rodgers. Despite coming off an MVP performance, Rodgers, once again, toyed with the idea of both retirement and requesting a trade—holding the team hostage of his decision until just before the start of free agency. Eventually, the two sides agreed to a three-year $150 million extension with outs scattered through those three years in case Rodgers retires or is traded.
But the problems didn’t stop there. Rodgers skipped OTAs for a second straight year—a concern considering Rodgers’ young group of inexperienced receivers. And according to McGinn, the veteran quarterback did not show up to training camp in proper shape, either.
“They don’t see Rodgers as a guy who’s really working hard anymore,” McGinn said. “They see a guy who—when he reported this year—his body wasn’t so-called ‘tight’ and strong as it was. They see a guy who blew off the offseason last year.”
Whether that’s true or not, the results speak for themselves. Rodgers’ 2022 season was his worst year in at least a decade. His 12 interceptions were almost as many as the previous three years combined (13), and his passer rating (91.1) was the lowest of his career as a starter, as was his 39.3 QBR. The Packers floundered to an 8-9 record—just the fourth time Green Bay finished with a losing record since Rodgers took over in 2008.
Per McGinn, the frustrating year has taken a toll on the Packers, and just about everyone within the organization is done with the drama.
“This is everybody, I’m told. This is (Packers president Mark) Murphy. This is (coach Matt) LaFleur. This is (general manager Brian) Gutekunst. This is the whole shooting match. They’ve turned the page.”
McGinn went as far as saying that if Rodgers decides he wants to play again in 2023—and play for the Packers—Green Bay would go as far as benching him for 2020 first-round pick Jordan Love. But he doesn’t believe it will get to that. He believes a trade will amicably happen between the two parties.
That said, McGinn said this (potential) move is also motivated by the Packers’ extreme confidence in Love. The 24-year-old quarterback has only made one start in his career and 83 passes, but behind the scenes, the Packers are reportedly very encouraged by his process.
“On the other hand, they love Jordan Love,” McGinn said. “They think he’s the second coming now. They’ve seen enough in practice for three years, that they believe he is like Rodgers 2.0.”
Decision time for Rodgers is fastly approaching, as free agency is just over three weeks away. Hopefully, we’ll get an answer to this never-ending drama soon.