Did Packers CEO Mark Murphy finally admit what has long been speculated?
In an interview Friday with WBAY-TV in Green Bay, Murphy hinted that the Packers are ready to move on from Aaron Rodgers.
Asked whether there’s any scenario in which Rodgers is Green Bay’s starting quarterback next season, Murphy said, “Yeah, I mean unless, if things don’t work out the way we want them, yeah, we would. He is obviously a great player.”
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“If things don’t work out the way we want them” is the key phrase. Unless Murphy misspoke, it appears the franchise is hoping Rodgers doesn’t return in 2023.
I asked Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy why they let the Jets talk with Aaron Rodgers.
“It’s a situation where I think we wanted to help Aaron achieve what he wanted, as well as the Packers. Hopefully it’ll create a situation where it’s a win for both sides.” pic.twitter.com/JNTOnO4VPv
— Adriana Torres (@TorresAdrianaTV) March 10, 2023
Murphy seemingly confirmed that Rodgers’ future lies away from Green Bay later, invoking Brett Favre’s famous departure after his 16-year run with the franchise:
“It kind of happens in our game. Very few players play for only one team. Brett had a great career here. Aaron had a great career here.”
As the world awaits Rodgers’ decision about his future, Murphy opened up about a possible trade timeline, saying “everyone” expects a resolution by the start of free agency. NFL free agency officially starts on Wednesday, March 15, with the negotiating period opening on Monday, March 13.
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Murphy seemed to speak of Rodgers in the past tense, telling WBAY, “It kind of happens in our game. Very few players play for only one team. Brett (Favre) had a great career here. Aaron had a great career here.”
“He will be in our hall of fame. We will bring him back and retire his number. But this is just one of the things that you go through as a team,” Murphy added.
Murphy confirmed that the Packers will honor a trade request from Rodgers and said that the Jets are the only team that has been given permission to speak with the four-time NFL MVP.
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Key Jets decision-makers, including owner Woody Johnson, coach Robert Saleh and general manager Joe Douglas, flew to California earlier in the week to meet with Rodgers in person, sparking speculation that a decision was coming soon.
As the leader of a traditionally tight-lipped organization, Murphy made it clearer than ever that the Packers are ready to start the Jordan Love era. If Rodgers wants to go to the Jets, it sounds as if Rodgers will be a Jet.
“It’s a situation where I think we wanted to help Aaron achieve what he wanted, as well as the Packers. Hopefully it’ll create a situation where it’s a win for both sides,” Murphy said.
The ball is in Rodgers’ court with free agency just days away.
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