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#pounditTuesday, October 26, 2021

Aaron Rodgers

NFL removes ‘Rodgers vs. Mahomes’ from schedule release promo

Aaron Rodgers

The Kansas City Chiefs and Green Bay Packers will face one another during the 2021 NFL season, so it makes sense that the league hyped Aaron Rodgers vs. Patrick Mahomes as one of the biggest matchups of the year. However, it appears the NFL is no longer comfortable promoting that particular showdown.

The NFL will release its complete 2021 schedule on Wednesday. A promo for the release that aired roughly a week ago highlighted several matchups we will see this year, and “Rodgers vs. Mahomes” was the first one mentioned. You can see the commercial below:

Brad Callas of Complex Sports noted on Sunday that the NFL has released a new version of the ad. The part that said “Rodgers vs. Mahomes” in the original has been replaced with “Jackson vs. Mahomes,” referencing when Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens will take on the Chiefs.

In all likelihood, that is the NFL’s way of quietly admitting they are unsure about a Rodgers vs. Mahomes matchup taking place this season. Rodgers wants out of Green Bay and does not appear to be backing down. You can read the latest on the situation here.

Here is the latest on the situation between Aaron Rodgers, Packers

Aaron Rodgers

The Green Bay Packers still have several weeks to find a way to change Aaron Rodgers’ mind about wanting a trade, but as of now it does not sound like that is going to happen.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported on Sunday’s edition of “SportsCenter” that Rodgers is “dug in” with his trade demand. The Packers are still trying smooth things over with the star quarterback, but they have not made any progress.

“The Packers are still actively looking for solutions here; they’re trying to keep an open line of communication with Aaron Rodgers and his agent, Dave Dunn,” Fowler said. “So, no traction in the short term. But many people around the league believe Aaron Rodgers is indeed ‘dug in,’ and there’s a belief by some that he wants to be out West.”

The Denver Broncos have consistently been mentioned as the most logical suitor for Rodgers. Fowler said they are keeping an eye on the situation but preparing as if they will not pull off a blockbuster trade.

“Denver is a team that’s buzzing in league circles. I was told by a source that Denver is ‘monitoring’ that situation right now,” Fowler added. “But they’re also coming out of the draft days, and they’re in the team-building mode. They really like Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater, so they’re not committed or tied to anything.”

Fowler also said he believes there is a 60-40 chance the Packers will trade Rodgers based on conversations he has had with NFL sources.

If the Packers refuse to trade Rodgers, some believe he will retire. There was another hint over the weekend that the 37-year-old could be setting himself up to launch a new career.

Aaron Rodgers set to make another notable TV guest appearance

Aaron Rodgers Jeopardy

While speculation continues to run rampant about Aaron Rodgers’ NFL future, the Green Bay Packers quarterback keeps adding to his resume in Hollywood.

A new promo released Saturday revealed that Rodgers is set to guest star on an upcoming episode of ABC’s “The Conners.” Even more notably, he’ll be appearing as the host of “Jeopardy!” within the show.

This will only fuel speculation even further. Rodgers has made no secret that he wants to host “Jeopardy!” on a permanent basis after his well-received guest stint in April. It’s also been reported that he will at least be considered for the job.

No permanent host has been announced yet, but the fact that he’s appearing in the role here — presumably with the show’s blessing — may be a hint that he has a real shot at the gig. Of course, it’s also possible that the episode taped during his guest hosting stint, or that the show felt he would be best for ratings.

All of this is happening against the backdrop of Rodgers’ ongoing drama with the Packers. It may leave some wondering where his priorities lie, but it’s clear that he’s keeping busy regardless of where things stand with the team.

Packers player shares why ‘petty’ Aaron Rodgers will not back down

Aaron Rodgers

There are very few people who believe Aaron Rodgers is going to change his mind about wanting out of Green Bay, and one Packers player has tried to shed some light on how the three-time NFL MVP operates.

An anonymous current Packers player shared his thoughts on the Rodgers situation with Tyler Dunne, a former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter who now runs a site called Go Long. According to Dunne, the player does not envision Rodgers returning to Green Bay.

“Aaron is an intelligent, trolling, petty, motherf—er,” Rodgers’ teammate reportedly said. “He’s going to get the last laugh. He’s going to make you look f—ing stupid for disrespecting him.

“As a front office, why haven’t you anticipated this? Why are you getting blindsided? I’m not saying Aaron’s evil but this is like a criminal mastermind plan.”

Rodgers has been angry with the Packers since they traded up in the first round to draft quarterback Jordan Love last year. What bothered him more is that they made the move without informing him ahead of time. Rodgers was also bothered by at least one other Roster move Green Bay made in the past year.

Dunne also spoke with a former Packers executive who said he is certain Rodgers will either be traded or retire.

“Put it this way: they’d have to fire everybody,” the former executive said. “He is dug in. They’d have to make him the freakin’ owner of the team. The sense I get is the dude just wants control.”

One recent report claimed Rodgers is more upset with general manager Brian Gutekunst than anyone else. That is easy to believe given the way Rodgers supposedly mocked Gutekunst in a group text chat, but the issues clearly run deeper than that.

We have yet to hear a viable solution for how the Packers can fix things with Rodgers. The longer that remains the case, the less likely he is to ever play for them again.

H/T Forbes

Report: Packers considered taking QB early in this year’s draft

Aaron Rodgers

The Green Bay Packers have given no indication publicly that they intend to trade Aaron Rodgers, but the way they reportedly prepared for the 2021 NFL Draft may prove that they have at least considered the possibility.

Tyler Dunne, who used to cover the Packers for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, told Damon Amendolara of CBS Sports Radio on Friday that Green Bay executives did their homework on this year’s quarterback class and considered adding a player at the position on Day 2. That would have meant selecting a QB in either the second or third round.

Dunne said some of the frustration between Rodgers and the Packers this offseason has been mutual. Green Bay was apparently willing to make Rodgers a “very rich man” if he would restructure his contract in a way that would allow them to “sign a free agent that he wanted,” but the two sides were unable to work out a new deal.

The Packers traded up in the first round to draft Jordan Love last year, so they obviously envision him becoming their franchise quarterback at some point. Still, the fact that they considered drafting a QB this year is likely an indication that they are worried about depth at the position.

Rodgers has been at odds with the Packers since they drafted Love and possibly before. He has reportedly been discouraging free agents from signing with the team and seems determined to force his way out of Green Bay. If the Packers give in, we have a decent idea of what it might cost another team to land Rodgers.

Aaron Rodgers wants to play in same division as this star QB?

Aaron Rodgers

The Denver Broncos are viewed as one of the most likely suitors for Aaron Rodgers should the Green Bay Packers decide to trade the star quarterback. Many have wondered why Rodgers would want to play in the same division as Patrick Mahomes, but that may be part of the allure for him.

Rich Eisen said on his show this week that Rodgers is not deterred by the fact that Mahomes plays in the AFC West. The 37-year-old believes Denver would be a good spot for him, and he would embrace competing against Mahomes.

It would probably be more difficult for Rodgers to win in the AFC West than it would if he remained in the NFC North. However, he clearly wants out of Green Bay and reportedly would prefer to play closer to where he grew up in Northern California. The San Francisco 49ers just drafted Trey Lance and the Los Angeles Rams traded for Matthew Stafford, so neither of those teams are in the mix for Rodgers.

Oddsmakers believe the Broncos are the favorite to land Rodgers if the Packers trade him. A report this week gave us an idea of what the asking price would be.

Ex-teammate explains why Aaron Rodgers-Packers situation is ‘fixable’

Aaron Rodgers

The situation between Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers does not appear to have improved at all in the past week, but one of the quarterback’s former teammates believes it can eventually be resolved.

James Jones, who was teammates with Rodgers in Green Bay from 2007-2013 and again in 2015, said on Thursday that he views the relationship between Rodgers and the Packers as “fixable.” The NFL Network analyst said he speaks with Rodgers frequently, so his opinion is an informed one.

“I speak with Aaron all the time. It has nothing to do with getting the GM fired. It has nothing to do with a new contract and getting money … I think it’s fixable,” Jones said, via Zach Kruse of Packers wire.

A report this week claimed Rodgers will not return to the Packers as long as Brian Gutekunst is the general manager. Jones doesn’t think that is true. Jones also isn’t buying any talk that Rodgers wants more money or a new contract.

So what’s the problem? Rodgers lost trust in management when they did not consult him before trading up to draft quarterback Jordan Love last year. Jones said at the time that he was confident the Rodgers-Love dynamic would work, but the decision clearly bothered Rodgers.

Ex-Packers linebacker AJ Hawk, who is also still friends with Rodgers, seemed less confident that Rodgers will return to Green Bay.

“It’s going to be an uphill battle to figure out the rift. It may take some time,” Hawk told NFL Network, per Kruse. “I don’t know if it’s something they can salvage, but I’m very hopeful they can.”

At this point, there is little consensus among former Packers players about how the Rodgers situation will turn out. Brett Favre also shared his thoughts on the drama this week. You can read them here.

Adam Schefter makes surprising admission about bombshell Aaron Rodgers story

Adam Schefter

ESPN’s Adam Schefter broke arguably the biggest NFL story of the year last week when he reported that Aaron Rodgers no longer wants to play for the Green Bay Packers. There has since been speculation that Rodgers’ camp intentionally leaked the information right before the start of the NFL Draft in an attempt to force a trade, but apparently that was not the case.

During an appearance on “The Dan Patrick Show” Thursday, Schefter revealed that he simply chose to drop the bombshell story hours before the start of the draft. He said no one came to him that day with anything new about the Rodgers situation. Rather, the story stemmed from an “accumulation of information” that he decided to release then.

So why draft day? Not long before Schefter broke his story, there was a report that the San Francisco 49ers made a massive trade offer to the Packers for Rodgers. Tom Pelissero of NFL Network followed that by confirming that the Niners reached out to Green Bay, though he said no formal offer was made.

Once those reports surfaced, Schefter felt it was only a matter of time before word got out that Rodgers wants out of Green Bay. That’s why he decided to break the story. You can hear more of his explanation below:

Some fans are angry over Schefter’s admission, as they believe it was inappropriate for him to steal the spotlight just hours before the draft. Schefter also contradicted himself a bit. As Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk notes, Schefter’s initial tweet and ensuing ESPN story about Rodgers specifically said “league and team sources told ESPN on Thursday.” That doesn’t mesh with what Schefter told Patrick.

If Schefter knew definitively weeks ago that Rodgers wants out of Green Bay, it would be awfully risky for him to sit on such a huge story. Perhaps the truth about why he dropped the news the day of the draft lies somewhere in the middle.

Here is the reported asking price in a potential Aaron Rodgers trade

Aaron Rodgers

The Green Bay Packers have given teams no indication that they are open to trading Aaron Rodgers, but we now have an idea of what it might take to land the star quarterback should they change their mind.

ESPN’s Rob Demovsky said Thursday that he was told by a high-ranking NFC executive that the price in a potential Rodgers trade would be two first-round picks and a second-round pick. However, Demovsky noted that the cost could be even higher due to the fact that the draft picks coming back to Green Bay would, in all likelihood, be picks near the end of their respective rounds. Any team that acquired Rodgers would instantly be a playoff contender.

Demovsky also reiterated his report from Wednesday that the Packers are angry about teams tampering with Rodgers.

The Packers still want to work things out with Rodgers. If that becomes impossible, they would almost certainly trade him rather than forcing him to retire.

Rodgers reportedly wants the Packers to make at least one big move before he considers returning. Even if the team did that, the relationship might still be unsalvageable. Brett Favre seems to believe Rodgers has played his last snap in Green Bay.

Report: Packers exploring QB options amid Aaron Rodgers drama

Aaron Rodgers

The Green Bay Packers maintain that they are committed to Aaron Rodgers and will not trade him, but they do not seem confident that the three-time MVP is going to show up to work anytime soon.

The Packers have been exploring options to add a quarterback to their roster ahead of OTAs and training camp, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports. Jordan Love is currently the only QB on their roster aside from Rodgers, so it’s possible Green Bay planned to address the position anyway.

Even if Rodgers does return to the Packers, it would be a surprise if he did so in the near future. The situation between the two sides has not improved and appears to be getting uglier by the day.

Rodgers has chosen not to publicly address the reports that he wants out of Green Bay, and his silence has been deafening. We learned this week that he may have been discouraging free agents from signing with the Packers dating back to last year.

Adding a veteran quarterback or an undrafted rookie makes sense for the Packers, as they have no way of knowing whether Rodgers will show up even if they don’t trade him. Rodgers would supposedly rather retire than return to Green Bay. Though, it sounds like there is one significant change the team could make that might please him.