Aaron Rodgers leaves an advanced Packers legacy, exits like Favre – Green Bay Packers Blog
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Aaron Rodgers differed from his predecessor because the Green Bay Packers’ quarterback in so some ways — from how he performed to how he lived his life within the public eye.
It was by design.
He wasn’t a reckless gunslinger, the persona that outlined Brett Favre, whose interceptions had been as spectacular as his touchdowns.
Rodgers didn’t usually let outsiders get to know him till a lot later in his profession — after which normally solely by way of his weekly appearances on “The Pat McAfee Show” — in contrast to Favre, who lived as an open e-book, sharing every part from his early-career habit to painkillers to grieving his father’s sudden dying to his spouse’s restoration from most cancers.
Rodgers even carried out his information conferences otherwise. While Favre most well-liked the rostrum within the media auditorium and infrequently shot from the lip, Rodgers appreciated to speak to reporters at his locker, the place he gave well-thought-out solutions.
The finish, nevertheless, appears like it will likely be the identical for each.
Favre left, and it seems Rodgers will depart, too — exiting Green Bay by way of commerce to the New York Jets after both initially retiring (Favre) or publicly discussing retiring (Rodgers).
Rodgers left little doubt Wednesday throughout a virtually hourlong look on McAfee’s present that his days with the Packers are over and he’s able to be traded to the Jets.
Rodgers mentioned he went into his latest meditative darkness retreat “90 percent retired and 10 percent playing.” He thought at that time, he may come again to Green Bay and play if he wished. But when he got here out of the darkness, he felt one thing had modified.
While the Packers’ aspect of the story most likely gained’t be informed till after a deal is finished, Rodgers put his playing cards on the desk throughout that prolonged interview.
“The Packers would like to move on,” Rodgers mentioned. “They’ve let me know that in so many words. They’ve let other people know that in direct words. Because I still have that fire, and I want to play, and I would like to play in New York, it’s just a matter of getting that done at this point.”
For as a lot acrimony as Favre’s departure created, it shouldn’t be forgotten he really wished to return to the Packers after his temporary retirement — solely to be rebuffed and finally traded. The vocal majority backed Favre and blamed then-general supervisor Ted Thompson and group president Mark Murphy.
Rodgers was extra imprecise about whether or not he really would have most well-liked to return to the Packers, however he can argue the Packers drove him to this by buying and selling as much as choose quarterback Jordan Love within the first spherical of the 2020 draft, and he would have a case.
But Murphy made it obvious final week that the Packers had been prepared to maneuver on no matter what Rodgers wished.
While Favre didn’t cover his displeasure with how issues ended for him in Green Bay, Rodgers took a softer stance.
“I’ve got nothing but love in my heart for every Packer fan and everybody that works in the organization,” Rodgers mentioned Wednesday. “My life is better because of my time in Green Bay. But we’ve just got to look at the reality. They want to move on. They don’t want me to come back, and that’s fine. They’re ready to move on with Jordan. That’s awesome.”
This finish muddied Rodgers’ legacy, at the least with the Packers. During Rodgers’ offseason hiatus in 2021, when he threatened to retire earlier than ever taking part in for the Packers once more, Murphy revealed that the late Thompson, who drafted Rodgers in 2005, as soon as referred to as the quarterback “a complicated fella.”
Now that Rodgers will play elsewhere, the identical phrase — sophisticated — can be utilized to explain his legacy in Green Bay.
If he’s not the best regular-season quarterback of all time, he’s at the least within the group photograph. The fourth NFL MVP award he collected in 2021 means solely Peyton Manning has gained extra (5).
But the MVP is a regular-season award.
The playoffs, at the least for the reason that Packers gained Super Bowl XLV to finish the 2010 season, inform a special story. Rodgers has a 7-9 document as a starter within the postseason since his lone championship. Those 16 straight postseason begins with out reaching the Super Bowl signify the longest streak by any quarterback in NFL historical past. And that streak consists of an 0-4 document in NFC title video games for the reason that victory over the Chicago Bears that despatched the Packers to their solely Super Bowl below Rodgers.
It may need been jarring to listen to former NFL coach and present ESPN analyst Rex Ryan’s evaluation of Rodgers after the Packers misplaced to the San Francisco 49ers within the divisional spherical because the NFC’s No. 1 seed in 2021.
“The guy’s legacy is the fact that he’s come up short,” Ryan mentioned, including that Rodgers is the “best thrower of the football I’ve seen.”
At least the Packers made the playoffs that season.
This previous season, Rodgers couldn’t even get them there — shedding at Lambeau Field to the Detroit Lions in a win-and-get-in sport within the regular-season finale. It capped maybe his worst season as a starter. He threw virtually as many interceptions (12) as he did within the earlier three seasons mixed (13). After back-to-back MVP seasons, Rodgers threw for the fewest yards (3,695) in any season through which he performed at the least 15 video games. He didn’t have a single 300-yard passing sport. He had by no means earlier than had a season with fewer than three video games of 300-plus yards.
He didn’t miss a single begin, though he performed many of the season with a damaged proper thumb. He additionally handled rib and knee accidents. And his supporting solid was weaker after Green Bay traded receiver Davante Adams.
Whatever occurs with the Jets, assuming a commerce may be accomplished, Rodgers’ place within the Packers’ document books appears like this: He’s the franchise chief in landing passes (475), completion share (65.3) and passer score (103.6) and ranks second behind solely Favre in passing yards (59,055) and completions (5,001).
His 475 landing passes rank fifth in NFL historical past, and he has the very best touchdown-to-interception ratio (475-105) in league historical past. He made 10 Pro Bowls and 4 occasions was chosen because the first-team All-Pro quarterback (2011, 2014, 2020 and 2021 — all of his MVP seasons).
“I would say I’m debatably the best player in franchise history,” Rodgers mentioned Wednesday. “I’m in the conversation for sure.”
Rodgers: ‘I went into the darkness 90% retiring’
Aaron Rodgers tells Pat McAfee he was closely contemplating retiring from the NFL previous to happening his darkness retreat.
Only 4 occasions in NFL historical past has a quarterback thrown at the least 35 touchdowns with 5 or fewer interceptions in a season: thrice by Rodgers and as soon as by Tom Brady. Rodgers’ 9.4 touchdown-to-interception ratio over the previous two seasons is the very best in a two-season span in NFL historical past with a minimal of 1,000 makes an attempt, in line with ESPN Stats & Information analysis.
Yet it’s not Rodgers’ fault he performed in the identical period as Brady, a seven-time Super Bowl champion who set an impossibly excessive bar. Drew Brees confronted the identical state of affairs and gained the identical variety of Super Bowls as did Rodgers, but not as many appear to suppose Brees underachieved.
When Rodgers and Brees had been set to sq. off through the 2020 season, ESPN used 2,278 phrases to attempt to clarify how these two iconic quarterbacks had every gained solely a single Super Bowl. Three would have sufficed: “It’s really hard.”
“Is that the barometer?” former Packers basic supervisor Ron Wolf mentioned on the time. “Is that the only barometer of success in the National Football League, whether you won a Super Bowl, two Super Bowls or not? Does that make you a great player, whether you won a Super Bowl or not? If you’re a really good player, that should not matter.”
Of course, it was Wolf who greater than a decade earlier provided this notorious line after the Packers did not repeat as Super Bowl champs following the 1997 season: “We’re a one-year wonder, just a fart in the wind.”
Perhaps it’s as a result of in 31 seasons with Rodgers or Brett Favre because the quarterback in Green Bay — a metropolis that calls itself “Titletown” — Packers followers have seen two Super Bowl parades.
There has lengthy been a notion the Packers didn’t do sufficient to assist both quarterback, however there’s additionally loads of proof to counsel mentioned quarterbacks did sufficient to dam themselves from extra success — Favre along with his penchant for interceptions and Rodgers with performances just like the one towards the 49ers in 2021.
Even Manning — maybe the one quarterback with extra regular-season accomplishments than Rodgers — gained a second Super Bowl, though he needed to change groups to do it.
If Rodgers isn’t totally appreciated for his accomplishments now, then maybe time will change that. It did with Favre, who was twice roundly booed at Lambeau Field when he returned in a Minnesota Vikings uniform following his one season with the Jets. Now, it’s as if Favre by no means performed for one more group, not to mention a bitter rival.
Rodgers’ departure may not be as upsetting to the lots. There had been requires Love to switch Rodgers this previous season when issues soured.
It’s time now to search out out if these cries had been justified.
“Jordan’s going to be a great player,” Rodgers mentioned. “He’s a f—ing great kid. He had a really good year this year, getting better on the look team. He’s got a bright future in front of him. They’ve got a good young team. I’ve got so many great friends on that team that I’m still going to be great friends with. But the fact of the matter is, you’ve got an aging face of the franchise for the last 15 years that it’s time to do right by.”
If Love can’t proceed the franchise’s outstanding run of elite quarterback play and the Packers fade again into the obscurity they skilled within the Seventies and Eighties, then maybe those that had been angered by Rodgers’ departure will likely be much more upset.
If Love does what Rodgers did and proves himself as a worthy alternative to a legend, then maybe it gained’t matter what Rodgers does from now till retirement.