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Packers Not Ready to Move On from Aaron Rodgers, GM Brian Gutekunst Says

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 13, 2023

GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - JANUARY 08: Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers scrambles with the ball against the Detroit Lions in the first half at Lambeau Field on January 08, 2023 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Green Bay Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst said Friday that the organization isn't yet ready to move on from quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

Per ESPN's Rob Demovsky, Gutekunst noted he would tell Rodgers directly if the team wanted to move in a different direction: "If we were? Sure, absolutely. You've got to be honest with him, you know what I mean? I think he deserves that if we get to that point. We're not at that point."

There has been a great deal of speculation regarding the 39-year-old future Hall of Famer since Green Bay was eliminated from playoff contention last weekend with a 20-16 home loss to the Detroit Lions in a win-and-in scenario.

After the game, videographers picked up Rodgers seemingly turning down Lions rookie wide receiver Jameson Williams' request for a jersey swap. Rodgers could be heard saying he wanted to "hold on to this one," leading to talk that Rodgers could retire or play elsewhere next season.

While speaking to the media, Rodgers said he would mull his future: "I'm not going to hold them hostage. I understand [the ramifications]. We're still in January here, March is free agency, so I just need some time to get the emotion out of it and figure out what's best."

Rodgers was the subject of trade rumors before the 2021 season and during the ensuing offseason, but he signed a three-year, $150.8 million extension in March.

He put up huge numbers in 2020 and 2021, earning the third and fourth NFL MVP awards of his career. Green Bay won 13 games each season as well but fell short of the Super Bowl.

Expectations were high entering 2022, but the trade of wide receiver Davante Adams to the Las Vegas Raiders threw the offense off track. Green Bay was 4-8 before reeling off four consecutive wins.

Rodgers built a rapport with young wideouts Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs as the season went on, but his numbers were down, as he finished with 3,695 yards (his fewest in a full season) and 26 touchdowns with 12 interceptions, which marked his most picks since 2008.

The Packers used a first-round pick on quarterback Jordan Love in 2020, but he has barely played, starting just once and attempting only 83 passes in 10 games.

Love has shown flashes, though, and Green Bay will soon need to make a decision on his future since 2023 is the final season of his rookie contract.

Losing Love to another team and watching him blossom into a superstar would be a tough pill for the Packers to swallow, but it is hard to blame them for perhaps wanting to try to make one more championship run with Rodgers.