Aaron Rodgers Leaving the Green Bay Might Not Be His Decision After Another Lackluster Playoff Loss, According to Packers Insider Rob Demovsky
All the talk around Aaron Rodgers after the Green Bay Packers’ disappointing loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the Divisional Round is about whether he will decide to leave the team this offseason. However, Packers insider Rob Demovsky says that the franchise might decide to move on before Rodgers does.
Aaron Rodgers has disappointed in the playoffs since his Super Bowl win
In his first three postseason appearances (2007, 2009, 2010), Aaron Rodgers produced a 5-1 record and won a Super Bowl. Since then, things haven’t gone so well for the Green Bay Packers QB.
The team’s playoff record since that fateful day in 2011 when Rodgers raised the Lombardi Trophy is an unspectacular 7-9. The Packers went one-and-out three times and have only won more than one playoff game in a postseason once, in 2016.
The latest loss to the San Francisco 49ers might be the most disappointing to date and Rodgers’ worst performance. The controversial QB’s offensive squad only mustered 10 points, which is the team’s lowest postseason point total ever in the Aaron Rodgers Era.
Rodgers posted an unspectacular line, completing 20-of-29 passes for 255 yards with no TDs or INTs. The 49ers also sacked him five times. The loss brings the QB’s record against San Francisco to 0-4 in the playoffs, and the team is now 1-3 in the postseason as the NFC’s No. 1 seed.
Despite three MVP Awards (with a possible fourth on the way) and a career 139-66-1 record, it seems like Rodgers and the Packers just can’t get it done in the playoffs.
Now, heading into an offseason where both the team’s roster and Rodgers’ future are both very much up in the air, could the Packers break up with Rodgers before he breaks up with them?
Green Bay Packers Insider Rob Demovsky says it might be the team that decides to move on, not Rodgers
ESPN’s Green Bay Packers insider Rob Demovsky joined the Dan Patrick Show on the Monday after yet another Lambeau Field collapse. The titular host asked Demovsky whether Rodgers leaving would be his decision of the Packers.
I would say, 48 hours ago, I would have said this is pretty much all Aaron Rodgers’ decision. In the last 48 hours since that game ended, I think the Packers do have to look at it and say, ‘Is it going to happen here? Is it going to happen with him?’ … I do think that it’s still more Rodgers call than the Packers but I think there’s probably some conversations being had across town at 1265 Lombardi Avenue discussing that exact thing.Green Bay Packers insider Rob Demovsky on Aaron Rodgers’ future
The Wisconsin-based reporter did note that head coach Matt LaFleur said, “We’d be crazy not to want him back.” He also stated that “Matt LaFleur is obviously part of the decision, but he’s not the only decision-maker.”
Patrick mentioned in his question that, from the time of former general manager Ted Thompson, the organization is one “that’s made tough decisions before.”
And the former Sportscenter host is right. Green Bay is known as a franchise that always keeps an eye on the future. The organization builds through the draft, and would rather pull the plug on a player or an era a year too early instead of a year too late (see Brett Favre).
With this in mind, it makes sense that current GM Brian Gutekunst starts the Packers rebuild now.
Now is the time for the Packers to go into rebuild mode
Whether Aaron Rodgers stays or goes, the truth is, the Green Bay Packers are in a bad salary cap spot going into 2022. Salary cap projections currently have the team $44.8 million over the salary cap next season. And that’s before signing any of its numerous veteran free agents.
On this list of unsigned Packers are WRs Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling, TE Robert Tonyan, and G Lucas Patrick on offense, and LB De’Vondre Campbell, CB Rasul Douglas, and DE Whitney Mercilus on defense. Additionally, the team can save around $35 million by cutting veterans like Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, and Randall Cobb.
If Rodgers does stay, Brian Gutekunst and the front office will have to do some serious salary-cap gymnastics to put a winning product out on the field in 2022.
The deeper you look into the numbers, though, both on and off the field, it seems like a mutual decision to move on might make the most sense for all parties involved. That means we’re officially on Aaron Rodgers Watch 2022, and the Jordan Love Era is upon us.
All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference