Aaron Rodgers put Jets fans on high alert recently as he continued to praise ex-Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. Rodgers has become somewhat of a legend after 18 seasons at the Packers, holding down the quarterback position with sustained quality.
Some would argue the 39-year-old looked slightly off the pace during the 2022 season, but last year, he was in fine form.
The three-year contract extension earning him $150.8m understandably supercharged his performances, as Rodgers became the highest-paid player annually in American sport. So why would he leave the Packers in 2023?
Well, nobody is saying the iconic NFL player is leaving. Equally, not even he can state his definitive plan for the season ahead. There is always an outside chance Rodgers will call it a day and retire, although this guy’s passion for the game will undoubtedly get in the way.
The situation is evolving fast and we'll get an answer from the player regarding his future fairly soon. But what will it be? Stay with us for an overview of the situation and our thoughts on whether Aaron Rodgers will join the New York Jets.
What's the situation?
After a fairly disappointing season for the Packers, in which Rodgers was one of the only players to consistently excel, many people started to wonder whether the veteran could do with a final spell of success elsewhere.
Bookmakers have started raising the odds of a potential transfer, which would have been unimaginable even last season. Sportsbook predictions on these types of things are always good value, as their employees often have their finger on the pulse.
More and more NFL sports betting sites are predicting a potential trade. Everybody knows the Jets need a new high-quality quarterback and the franchise has been dropping subtle hints over the last month.
In fact, head coach Robert Saleh is quoted as saying he wants to add a "veteran quarterback" to his team, which was the clearest sign yet that the Rodgers transfer to Jets is a serious desire. Considering Nathaniel Hackett's appointment, it would make sense, too. Will it happen? Ultimately, it’s too early to tell.
Can Nathaniel Hackett tempt Aaron Rodgers away from the Green Bay Packers?
Hackett was the offensive coordinator at the Packers between 2019 and 2021, helping Rodgers to enjoy some of his most fruitful seasons. He was NFL MVP in the last two years, so you can see why the partnership is so highly regarded.
Rodgers stoked the flame even more recently on the Pat McAfee Show, saying:
"Love Hack. Hack is my guy. We really bonded when he was in Green Bay. He made it fun. He made the room fun. He made the weeks fun."
This sent the alarm bells ringing at the NBC Sports ProFootballTalk platform and elsewhere in the media. If there's anybody who could tempt the one-franchise man away from Wisconsin, it's Hackett.
For many NFL fans, seeing Rodgers in anything but the famous Packers jersey would be a shock, to say the least. He has repeatedly spoken of his love of the team, but with the opportunity to work with Hackett beckoning, you just never know.
Contract extension with the Packers and a disappointing 2022 season
This isn't the first time Aaron Rodgers' future at the Green Bay Packers has been in contention. There was speculation last year that the quarterback might retire before the 2022 season kicked off, or look to another franchise.
However, for many of us, Rodgers' future in Green Bay was never in doubt. The player confirmed he would sign a record-breaking new contract with the club in March.
Initial reports were a four-year, $200M extension, but it was later revealed to be over three years and worth $158.8M.
Rodgers went on to have a rather disappointing season, recording 3,695 passing yards, 26 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. The Packers faltered as a team as well, unable to reach the playoffs for the first time in four years.
The feeling of disappointment may be a factor behind the speculation of Rodgers moving on. After the season he just had, who would blame him?
Does Rodgers know what he wants for 2023?
But here's the thing: does Rodgers himself even know what he wants for 2023? The player recently revealed on the Pat McAfee Show that he was yet to make up his mind, stating that:
"I feel confident that in a couple weeks, I'll feel definitely more strongly about one of two decisions"
We imagine those two decisions are staying at the Packers or moving on, most likely to the Jets. Nevertheless, there is always the possibility of his retirement. Fellow NFL legend Tom Brady recently announced his retirement. Could Rodgers join him?
Will Rodgers land up at the Jets?
The whole Aaron Rodgers rumor has been one of the most exciting pieces of Jets news for quite some time. The franchise really does need a quarterback of his quality in order to press on, and head coach Robert Saleh has spoken of wanting a "vintage" option.
There is no way Rodgers hasn't got the message after that comment, so it's really down to him to make a decision. He would no doubt be keen to work with offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett again, so it certainly isn't a pipe dream.