EAST RUTHERFORD — An MRI Tuesday morning confirmed that New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers will be lost for the remainder of the 2023 NFL season due to a torn Achilles, as first reported by NFL Network.
The MRI results come after the quarterback went down just four plays into his New York career and did not return to the game after was carted off the field following a long stay in the medical tent. While X-rays were negative, most scans do not show tendon injuries like the one Rodgers sustained.
New York came back to beat the AFC East-rival Bills 22-16 in overtime. Now, the win seems hollow as it confirms the team will be without the quarterback which had seemingly changed the culture at 1 Jets Drive forever.
In Rodgers’ place, the Jets will turn to Zach Wilson to right the ship. He went 14-of-21 passing for 140 yards with a touchdown and interception in New York’s win. While he performed admirably in the fourth quarter, the Jets could also look to add another quarterback to the roster for depth purposes.
“I don’t hurt for me, I don’t hurt for our team, I hurt for Aaron,” Jets head coach Robert Saleh explained after the win. “How much he invested in all of this. My heart is with him…I’ll say a prayer for him.”
Rodgers was traded to the Jets by the Packers this offseason with several trade contingencies to protect Gang Green from situations like this. With the quarterback unable to hit the 65% snap threshold, the Jets will keep their 2024 first-round pick.
This will, however, raise concerns about Rodgers’ future playing career. At 39 years old, it’s hard to recover from serious injuries such as Achilles tears. Retirement could certainly be on the table for a player who was considering walking away from the game in February before landing on the Jets as his preferred destination.
The quarterback has not announced any plans at this time.
Regardless of what happens now, Gang Green will need to move on with Wilson as their quarterback. The blow of losing a Hall-of-Famer with a roster that is Super Bowl caliber will sting as much as Vinny Testaverde’s injury almost three decades ago.
But the “next-man-up” mentality will have to take over.