Aaron Rodgers Says He Won't Hold Packers 'Hostage' and Would Have No Regrets Retiring

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 9, 2023

GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - JANUARY 08: Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers warms up prior to the game against the Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field on January 08, 2023 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Aaron Rodgers says he isn't planning to hold the Green Bay Packers "hostage" in deciding his playing future.

That said, he does not appear close to making a final call.

Rodgers addressed the potential of retirement following Sunday's season-ending loss to the Detroit Lions, indicating he plans to take time and reflect before making a call on whether to return for a 19th NFL season.

"At some point, the carousel comes to a stop and it's time to get off, and I think you kind of know when that is," Rodgers told reporters. "And that's what needs to be contemplated. Is it time? Also, what's the organization doing? That's part of it, as well. But the competitive fire is always going to be there. I don't think that ever goes away. Sometimes it gets transferred, I think, to other things that might not ever fill that large void. But like I said, I feel good about what I've accomplished in this league and wouldn't have any regrets walking away. But I got to see what it feels like once I get away from this."

Darius Joshua @DariusJoshuaTV

<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Packers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Packers</a> Aaron Rodgers doesn't know what he will do. But he says that competitive fire will always be there, and he would have no regrets about the totality of his career if he decided to hang up the cleats<br><br>He'll take some time away to decide what to do next with his career <a href="https://t.co/Sokm1M84zA">pic.twitter.com/Sokm1M84zA</a>

Coming off back-to-back MVP seasons, Rodgers looked like a player who may have lost the battle to Father Time. He threw for 3,695 yards and 26 touchdowns against 12 interceptions, posting the worst full-season quarterback rating (91.8) and QBR (39.4) of his career.

While the Packers went on a month-long winning streak to set up Sunday's win-or-go-home matchup against the Lions, the 39-year-old didn't have a single game with multiple passing touchdowns over that span. Green Bay topped 30 points just three times all season.

Rodgers admitted the Packers' status as a relatively young team may weigh into his decision-making.

"Do I feel like I have anything left to prove to myself?" he said. "Do I want to go back and gear up for another grind? Or is it time? Is time to step away? Is it time for another voice to be leading this team?

"I think I need to get away and contemplate those things. Those are real to me. I have a lot of pride in what I've accomplished in this league, but I'm also a realist, and I understand where we're at as a team. We're a young team; there could be some changes with some of the older guys, and it could be time to step away. But I could take some time and say hell no, man, I need to get back out there and go on another run. But I'll have to see what it feels like once I'm away from it."

Rodgers has spent his entire career in Green Bay and has $59.5 million coming to him next season if he chooses to return. The money will not play a factor in his decision, with the veteran saying he's "thankful" for the wealth already provided by his football career.