Aaron Rodgers wasn't bluffing about retirement.
Peter King of NBC Sports wrote that Rodgers was "50-50" about temporarily walking away from the game over his displeasure with the Packers earlier this offseason. The reigning NFL MVP requested a trade that was ultimately not granted and spent the entire spring and early part of the summer in a stalemate with Packers management.
The Packers were able to convince Rodgers to play this season by agreeing to a number of contractual concessions. His reworked contract now voids after the 2022 season, and the team agreed to not use its franchise tag on him. Management also agreed to revisit Rodgers' future after this season.
"In 2022, he will either agree to stay in Green Bay (and perhaps sign an extension) or request a trade, likely with some say about his landing spot. The Packers, I am told, will not release him in 2022," King wrote.
Rodgers threw for 4,299 yards and a career-high 48 touchdowns against five interceptions last season, winning his third MVP before leading the Packers to their second straight NFC Championship Game appearance. Green Bay fell short for the second straight season and has lost four straight conference title games since winning Super Bowl XLV.
Rodgers certainly didn't lack in opportunities outside the game of football this offseason. He spent two weeks hosting Jeopardy! in place of the late Alex Trebek, and he almost certainly would have had offers flooding in from media outlets if he chose to retire. He and Bryson DeChambeau also took down Tom Brady and Phil Mickelson in The Match 4, a head-to-head match play golf event.
What's clear is that Rodgers never wanted to walk away from football, only from a situation in Green Bay he felt had run its course. Now that he has more control over his future, it seems Rodgers is settled in for another deep playoff run.