Aaron Rodgers Trade Rumors: Packers, Jets 'Not Close'; Green Bay Eyes 'Premium' Deal

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVMarch 16, 2023

Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers during the first half of an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams Monday, Dec. 19, 2022, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
AP Photo/Morry Gash

Despite future Hall of Fame quarterback Aaron Rodgers' stated desire to play for the New York Jets in 2023, the Green Bay Packers are reportedly "not close" to trading him to the Jets yet.

During an appearance Thursday on Get Up, ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter said the following about negotiations between the Packers and Jets:

"My understanding is the two sides, as of last night, were not close to completing a deal. And the Green Bay Packers aren't going to be in a rush to get something done until they feel like they get sufficient compensation for the player that believes he is the greatest player in Packers franchise history. You're talking about a four-time MVP, and they believe that there's a premium to be paid for that. That when you look at the landscape at what other quarterbacks in recent trades in recent years have fetched, it has been a lot.

"What did the Broncos give up for Russell Wilson? Multiple ones [first-round picks]. What did the Rams give up for Matthew Stafford? Multiple ones. Not every quarterback has been traded for a package like that, but those conversations have occurred in the Packers building. Never said the Packers asked for that, but they've talked about that as an organization."

During an appearance on the Pat McAfee Show (h/t Sports Illustrated) on Wednesday, Rodgers revealed that he made the decision to play for the Jets last week and blamed the Packers for holding up the trade based on the compensation they are seeking.

The Jets have seemingly already been preparing for Rodgers' arrival, as they hired his former offensive coordinator, Nathaniel Hackett, as their new OC, along with agreeing to a contract with former Packers wide receiver Allen Lazard in free agency.

Because of that, the Packers are in the power position in negotiations, as the Jets almost can't possibly turn back because of the uproar it would cause within the fanbase.

If not Rodgers, the Jets are out of quality options at quarterback for 2023. They would either have to run it back with Zach Wilson, sign or trade for a veteran who is a significant downgrade from Rodgers or draft a quarterback who isn't among the clear top four prospects at the position.

The Jets also have the longest active postseason drought in the NFL, as they haven't reached the playoffs since 2010, meaning their desperation has reached a fever pitch.

As noted by Schefter, quarterbacks who have accomplished far less than Rodgers have yielded some hefty trade packages in recent years, although they were younger than Rodgers is now at 39.

When the Los Angeles Rams acquired Stafford from the Detroit Lions in 2021, they parted with two first-round picks and a third-round pick. The move paid immediate dividends for L.A., as it won the Super Bowl in Stafford's first season.

In an attempt to replicate the Rams' success, the Broncos acquired Wilson from the Seattle Seahawks last year for two first-rounders, two second-rounders, a fifth-rounder, quarterback Drew Lock, tight end Noah Fant and defensive lineman Shelby Harris.

Unlike the Stafford trade, the Wilson trade did not go well initially with Wilson struggling through the worst season of his career and the Broncos missing the playoffs.

It is hard to imagine the Packers getting the type of haul the Seahawks did for Wilson, but it isn't impossible since Green Bay holds all of the cards at this point.

If a trade does ultimately go down as expected, the Packers will turn to 2020 first-round draft pick Jordan Love, who has just one career start to his credit.

Green Bay traded Brett Favre to the Jets in 2008, which led to Rodgers becoming the starter and building a Hall of Fame resume, and there is little doubt the Packers would like for history to repeat itself 15 years later.