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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.
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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.
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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.