Jets Have Leverage in Rodgers Negotiations With Packers

Long-time Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers says he wants to play for the New York Jets this coming season. Joe Banner explains why the Packers have a potentially “devastating” scenario on their hands in the ongoing negotiations with the Jets and why this is a move the Packers have to make.

>> READ: Rodgers Intends to Play for Jets

2023 NFL Mock Draft 4.2: How Much Does Green Bay Get in Aaron Rodgers Trade?

2023 NFL Mock Draft 4.2: How Much Does Green Bay Get in Aaron Rodgers Trade?
There are four potentially franchise-altering quarterbacks available at the top of the 2023 NFL Draft, so expect teams to jump at the chance to trade up in the draft if the opportunity arises. The Indianapolis Colts and Atlanta Falcons are two teams that could look to move up, hopefully securing the future faces of their […]

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Lazard: Rodgers’ Decision Didn’t Influence Signing With Jets

A reunion between former teammates Allen Lazard and Aaron Rodgers seems inevitable. However, in a news conference to announce his signing with the New York Jets on Friday, Lazard said he would’ve signed with the team regardless of whether the Green Bay Packers quarterback ends up in New York in 2023.

“Obviously, there’s an inclination that he’s coming here, but after the season, after the last game, in the locker room, I mentioned how I have to worry about myself and take care of what’s best for me, and I can’t worry about other people,” Lazard said. “My decision coming here was purely based off that and making sure that I’m doing what’s best for my career. Obviously, him being here, it definitely helps the entire organization to be able to take that next step, make a deep playoff run, and go win that Lombardi Trophy.”

Lazard said playing in New York and working with offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, who served as the Packers’ offensive coordinator from 2019-2021, were significant factors in his decision to sign with the Jets.

Rodgers should be happy Lazard landed with the Jets since Rodgers reportedly asked the team to sign Lazard along with two other former Packers, WR Randall Cobb and TE Marcedes Lewis. Rodgers’ list also included free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. Rodgers denied the report,  calling it “stupid.”

Regardless of whether Rodgers asked the Jets to sign Lazard, there’s no denying the pair have a good on-field relationship.

Last season, with Davante Adams having moved on to Las Vegas, Lazard caught a team-high 60 passes for 788 yards and six touchdowns. He was targeted by Rodgers 100 times. No other receiver had more than 67 targets.

“As a wide receiver, the best relationship you can have is with the quarterback and the relationship I have with [Rodgers] has been phenomenal,” Lazard said. “Obviously, standing here today, it feels good knowing that 12’s going to be my quarterback again.”

Although Lazard spoke as if Rodgers’ deal to the Jets is already completed, Green Bay and New York have yet to agree on compensation. The Packers reportedly want the Jets’ first-round pick this year (No. 13 overall) and additional draft picks for next year.

WATCH: It’s Super Bowl or Bust for Jets


Report: Packers Seek First-Round Pick from Jets in Rodgers Deal

The Green Bay Packers are aiming high in trade negotiations with the New York Jets for Aaron Rodgers, reportedly seeking at least a first-round pick in exchange for the future Hall of Fame quarterback.

Green Bay wants a first-round pick in this year’s draft in addition to some type of draft compensation in 2024 in the event Rodgers plays at least two seasons in New York, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reported on Thursday.

This report comes a day after Rodgers stated his intentions to play for the Jets in 2023 if compensation in a trade could be worked out between the two teams. The fact that a trade hasn’t been consummated yet lends credence to the Packers’ elevated asking price.

If the Packers are to receive that type of compensation, it likely will end up costing more than just Rodgers, who signed a three-year, $150 million contract extension in March of last year, a deal that includes $59.465 million guaranteed in salary and bonus in 2023. More than $58 million of it is due in the form of a bonus no later than the first game of the 2023 season in September.

“It’s more than just draft compensation,” said Rick Spielman, former GM of the Vikings and Dolphins and analyst for The 33rd Team. “Draft compensation is not as important as the financial package and what his contract looks like. Will Green Bay take on some of that contract? … What Green Bay is potentially paying on that may affect how much draft compensation is involved in this deal.”

The Jets pick at No. 13 in the first round of this year’s draft, meaning it would be a premium pick they are sending for Rodgers if a first-rounder ends up being the price. They also hold the No. 43 overall pick, their own selection in the second round, and their own Day 1 and 2 selections in 2024.


Aaron Rodgers Packers-Jets Saga Winners and Losers

The drama surrounding the Aaron Rodgers saga, which hit a new level on Wednesday with his appearance on The Pat McAfee Show, might have earned an Oscar last weekend.

On Day 1 of the NFL business season, Rodgers remains a Green Bay Packer. Not by his preference, and certainly not by the choice of the New York Jets.

So, as this narrative gets spicier and more complicated, it becomes obvious who the winners and losers are – much of which figures to change as this soap opera plays to its conclusion. And who knows when that might be?

Rodgers Saga Winners

Jordan Love

After sitting, and presumably learning behind Rodgers for three years, the 2020 first-round draft pick steps in as the Packers’ new starting quarterback. It’s a very similar path to what Rodgers followed as a backup to Brett Favre. Love probably has waited long enough and deserves an opportunity. 

“They’re ready to move on with Jordan,” Rodgers said. “That’s awesome. Jordan’s going to be a great player. He’s a (expletive) great kid. He had a really good year this year, getting better. … He’s got a bright future in front of him.”

Lions, Vikings and Bears

Get this: Jared Goff might be the best quarterback left in the division. Regardless, the Lions, Vikings and Bears might be willing to up the ante for the Jets to get Rodgers into the AFC East. 

Or anywhere else.

“I think there would be a lot of other teams that would come into the mix, like Tampa Bay,” said Mike Tannenbaum, former NFL team executive and analyst for The 33rd Team. “Just because they have Baker Mayfield, I don’t think they would not be interested in Aaron Rodgers.” 

Allen Lazard

Hardly a dynamic wide receiver in a mediocre free-agent crop at the position, Lazard still landed a lucrative four-year, $44 million contract with the Jets. Clearly, his camaraderie with Rodgers helped – and could aid the Jets in finishing off the deal. 

The Wilsons

A flop in his first two pro seasons, Zach Wilson gets to study a master in an offense suited for him. He has said he idolizes Rodgers, who in turn has been complimentary toward Wilson. Meanwhile, Offensive Rookie of the Year Garrett Wilson can dream about All-Pro honors catching balls from Rodgers.

Nathaniel Hackett

Somehow, his utter failure in Denver as a head coach didn’t damage Hackett much, and now he’s the Jets’ offensive coordinator, with the prospect of the guy who basically landed the Broncos job for Hackett – yes, Rodgers – rejoining him in the Meadowlands.

“There’s a lot of reasons why the Jets are attractive,” Rodgers said. “But there’s one coach who has meant as much to me as any coach that I’ve ever had, and he happens to be the coordinator there.”

Even if Rodgers doesn’t go to New Jersey, Hackett prospered.

Aaron Rodgers

Although he’s still in limbo, Rodgers likely will make tons of money to match the hundreds of headlines he garnered during his self-search for wisdom on continuing his career or retiring.

His complex contract basically could cost the Packers $100 million over two years if they don’t trade him, but would be only a $40 million hit for them if they do. 

“I don’t understand why the Packers aren’t saying, ‘Give us anything,’ and be thrilled to death that they saved $60 million on the contract,” said Joe Banner, former NFL team executive and analyst for The 33rd Team.

Rodgers Saga Losers

Woody Johnson

Johnson told his staff he would open the checkbook for a veteran quarterback, and when the objective became Rodgers, the Jets owner not only missed the bullseye, he shot wide of the entire target. Rather than ensuring a compensation agreement with the Packers before actually wooing Rodgers in person, Johnson boxed his team into a corner and lost all leverage. As of now, it’s Green Bay that is in control; indeed, the Packers have no reason to hurry making this trade from a business standpoint.

Meanwhile, Gang Green followers in the Big Apple are turning all shades of green. 

“I am hard-pressed to understand how Green Bay doesn’t have leverage in this situation,” Tannenbaum said. “To me, they have given Green Bay a blank check.”

Joe Douglas

The Jets’ general manager has done a solid job adding talent to the roster, particularly on defense. The missing piece has been, of course, at quarterback. Left to his own devices, Douglas likely could have worked out an agreement suitable to both sides. Instead, the team owner helped turn the pursuit of Rodgers into a circus  — on TV, throughout the real media and in social media.

“I had the thought that this is not a good thing,” said Bill Polian, Hall of Fame executive and analyst for The 33rd Team. “Maybe you send the coach, but send the whole entourage? No.”

 Should the whole thing collapse like the Jets did in December and January, don’t look for Johnson to point the finger at himself.


Even though Rodgers reached only one Super Bowl in a certain Hall of Fame career, and the team underachieved in recent playoffs, Packers Nation is going to be sad and definitely uncomfortable when he departs. Considering you have to go back more than 30 years to find uncertainty behind center in Green Bay, those feelings are warranted. And reciprocated by Rodgers.

“I have nothing but love in my heart for every Packer fan and everybody that works in the organization,” Rodgers said. “My life is better because of my time in Green Bay. But we just got to look at the reality. [The Packers] want to move on, they don’t want me to come back. And that’s fine. … I’ve got so many great friends on that team that I’m still going to be great friends with.”

Aaron Rodgers

His reputation as a team leader has taken a hit, and there are some pundits questioning Rodgers’ loyalty. We don’t believe that; he noted Wednesday the Packers were ready to move on from him. But the way this tale has progressed can’t boost his image. Unless, of course, he leads the Jets somewhere they haven’t been since 1969.

Barry Wilner was a sportswriter for the Associated Press for 46 years. He has covered virtually every major sporting event, including 14 Olympics, nine World Cups, 34 Super Bowls, the World Series, and the Stanley Cup Finals, and has written 75 books. Follow him on Twitter @Wilner88


Jets, Packers Must Find Middle Ground in Aaron Rodgers Trade Very Soon

Aaron Rodgers made it official on Wednesday, stating that he intends to play for the New York Jets next season. However, Rodgers is still a member of the Green Bay Packers, and though a trade has been discussed and is expected between the two teams, nothing has been officially done as of yet. Debating who has the leverage in negotiations between the two sides isn’t what important. What’s important is that the two teams find a middle ground on which to agree, and get a deal done sooner rather than later.

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