A trade between the Green Bay Packers and New York Jets centered around quarterback Aaron Rodgers may not be completed until the first day of the 2023 NFL Draft on April 27, which is "the only real deadline," NFL Network's Ian Rapoport said during an appearance on the Pat McAfee Show on Monday (March 20).
"I'm trying to look at where this goes and, you know, deadlines are always what drives these things. There is a real possibility this rolls right up to the draft cause that's the only deadline. It's about the 2023 draft picks and when you actually have to use them is the deadline," Rapoport said.
Rapoport said the two sides are likely continuing to discuss the compensation involved but he, personally, cannot confirm which side has the leverage with Rodgers publicly announcing his intention to play for the Jets next season and the Packers previously acknowledging their plan to move on to former first-round pick Jordan Love at quarterback.
"I don't see any point where they would just say, 'OK, fine, we have to do this deal' until late April."
Rodgers publicly acknowledged his intention to play for the Jets next season after previously being in favor of retiring prior to his recent darkness retreat while appearing on the Pat McAfee Show last Wednesday (March 15).
"Since Friday, my intention was to play and play for the NY Jets," Rodgers said.
Rodgers also confirmed that a deal hadn't been completed and is a matter of both teams working it out, but cited the Packers' decision to select Love, his eventual successor, in the first-round of the 2020 NFL Draft as the franchise showing its intention of wanting to move on, but was delayed by his consecutive NFL MVP awards, prior to last season. Rodgers also admitted he was "90% retiring" before going on his darkness retreat last month.
Rodgers' comments came after ESPN's Dianna Russini reported Tuesday that Rodgers gave the New York Jets a free agent wish-list after meeting with team officials in California last week, which he denied and referred to as "stupid."
"Aaron Rodgers has provided the NY Jets with a wish-list of free agents he would like them to target and acquire, per sources. It includes Randall Cobb, Allen Lazard, Marcedes Lewis and….Odell Beckham Jr." Russini tweeted on Tuesday (March 14).
Last Monday (March 13), longtime former ESPN anchor Trey Wingo reported that he was "hearing Rodgers to the Jets is done," though both Rapoport and ESPN's Adam Schefter refuted that a deal had been officially reached.
Rodgers met with Jets owner Woody Johnson and a contingent of team representatives in California on March 7. A move to New York would reunite Rodgers with recently hired offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, who had previously held the same position with the Packers from 2019 to 2021.
New York had previously acquired Rodgers' predecessor, Brett Favre, in a trade with the Packers in 2008, which led to the eventual four-time NFL MVP taking over as Green Bay's starting quarterback for the remainder of his tenure with the franchise.
Last month, Schefter reported that the Jets were "a very real scenario" in a possible trade for Rodgers even prior to the hiring of Hackett, who the quarterback had publicly praised following his hiring as the Denver Broncos' head coach last offseason. Rodgers led the NFL's top scoring offense during the first of two consecutive Associated Press Most Valuable Player award-winning seasons in 2020, both of which took place during Hackett's tenure with the Packers.
Rodgers signed a three-year, $150 million extension with the Packers last offseason amid previous reports of being disgruntled with the franchise. The 39-year-old was coming off back-to-back MVP seasons ahead of the 2022 NFL season, which resulted in Green Bay missing the playoffs after clinching a postseason berth during the previous three consecutive seasons and 11 of the past 13 years.
Rodgers leads all Packers quarterbacks with 475 touchdowns and ranks second in franchise history behind only Favre in QB wins (147), completions (5,001) and passing yards (7,660).