Aaron Rodgers may have felt that his declaration of wanting to come to the New York Jets put more pressure on his former team to get a deal done.
In the end, he might have also added more pressure to the franchise trying to acquire him.
Rodgers spoke on the Pat McAfee show Wednesday afternoon stating his intentions to be the Jets’ starting quarterback in 2023. While still under contract with the Packers, the four-time NFL MVP also explained that the team he had been with for over 18 seasons was clearly looking to move him following his darkness retreat in February.
With the future Hall of Fame quarterback expected to be on the move, the pressure is now on Joe Douglas to complete a deal that would give the Jets their most talented quarterback in franchise history.
Douglas is part of a front office that, from the beginning of the 2023 offseason, had made it their mission to acquire a top veteran quarterback to pair with an extremely talented young core of players both on offense and defense. While the team stayed patient and let good signal callers like Jimmy Garappollo and Derek Carr walk in free agency, the idea was they wanted the bigger fish in the available pond in Rodgers.
They are now just a few moments, and trade demands away from doing the one thing they had pledged to do when the 2022-23 season concluded.
To do so, the Jets will need to find a way to bridge the gap that is holding the trade up. Green Bay doesn’t have a ton of leverage left after Rodgers made his demands to join Gang Green, but they can hold off a trade long enough for the Jets to miss out on some key free agents. Add in the financial impact of a trade for a league MVP and there are still plenty of hurdles still to jump through as free agency officially kicks off.
Of course, the trade for Rodgers isn’t likely to be held up for long. His “intentions” were made clear, and the Packers have already been looking for ways to turn the page to their young quarterback, Jordan Love. But for the Jets, everything hinges on having Rodgers on their roster. That doesn’t mean the pressure will come off even when a trade is made.
No matter what happens over the coming weeks, when Rodgers inevitably becomes a member of the Jets, the pressure on New York’s front office will continue to be over their facility as long as a transcendent talent is on their roster. Merely competing for victories won’t be enough anymore.
It’s championship or bust for the Jets the minute Rodgers made his declarations known. And it’s brought new-found pressure to a franchise that is looking to finally become a winner.