It is not unusual for players, especially superstars like Aaron Rodgers, to become disgruntled over time. Trade demands/requests are also not uncommon. But what has been unusual is the rate at which NFL teams give in to their unhappy stars and give them what they want.
However, while many teams have given in and traded their superstars (usually for a package of draft picks too nice to pass up), the Green Bay Packers do not appear to have any interest or desire to grant Aaron Rodgers his wish.
But that does not stop the rumors from flying or keep speculation from running rampant. When the rumors first hit the internet, they were enough to send the Super Bowl odds for the Denver Broncos spiraling down.
Denver’s odds have since started to go back up slowly, and Green Bay’s are beginning to drop again. But with that all-important June 1 date coming up (when the dead cap number for Rodgers drops by $16 million), the rumors and speculation are bound to kickstart all over again.
The question is whether anything will come from them.
Why Aaron Rodgers Has Demanded A Trade
The assumption has been that Rodgers wants out because the team drafted his replacement, Jordan Love. But in a recent appearance on ESPN, Rodgers put those rumors to bed:
— ESPN (@espn) May 25, 2021
Rodgers is not direct with his remarks. But he alludes to enough that we can figure out what the problem is and why last year was the tipping point for him.
After going 13-3 in the 2019 season, the Packers looked like a legit Super Bowl contender. Perhaps more so than usual since the defense played so well in 2019 (9th in points allowed) while the offense failed to do enough (15th in scoring with 23.5/game).
The running game was okay, and Rodger threw for 4000+ yards for the eighth time in his career. But the offense was not super-productive. It ranked 18th in total yards per game (345.5) and just 15th in scoring (23.5).
What the Packers needed to do appeared to be obvious to most observers. They needed another playmaker on offense, someone that could help Rodgers make the offense productive. With the wide receivers available in the 2020 Draft, the Packers would have to try hard to mess things up—which they did.
Taking Jordan Love in the first was bad enough. But the Packers could have taken a good receiver in the second or even the third. Instead, they selected a running back and a tight end.
From 2009 to 2016, the Packers had one of the most explosive offenses in the league. With the talent they had, it was easy for Rodgers and the Green Bay offense to shine. As a result, they made it to the playoffs every year. Not only that, but they made it to the NFC title game three times and won a Super Bowl.
But since 2016, the offensive philosophy has appeared to be “let’s see what Aaron Rodgers can do with these guys.” They still made it to the last two NFC title games, so the philosophy cannot be all bad. Then again, they lost both– and close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.
It is not hard to understand the frustration Rodgers feels. With how the team is being run, it does not look like winning the Super Bowl is a priority. It is almost as if the organization is satisfied with just being one of a handful of good teams.
For a competitor like Rodgers, that philosophy is not good enough. The Packers may not care about winning, but he does.
NFL Betting Recommendation
Stay away from the Green Bay Packers this year. If they keep Rodgers and he plays, they will still be a good team and win some games. They will probably make the playoffs, too. But do not expect to see them back in the NFC title game for the third year. They certainly will not make the Super Bowl, let alone win it.