Although the start of the 2022 season is still about three months away, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has made his retirement plans known.
When asked on Tuesday if he planned to end his career in Green Bay, Rodgers insisted he would come out as a Packer.
“Yeah, definitely,” he said on day one of the Packers’ mandatory minicamp.
Rodgers, the two-time AP NFL Most Valuable Player, signed a three-year, $150 million extension with the Pack this offseason. However, the length of the deal is unlikely to give any indication of how long the 38-year-old Rodgers will play. Despite making it clear that he will eventually hang up while donning green and gold, Rodgers is simply focused on the 2022 season and realizes that how any campaign unfolds will be instrumental in his decision to continue playing. or retire.
“If you say I’m sure I’m going to play another two, three years and you have a magical season that ends with a championship and you think that might be the best way to go, I don’t want to commit to something,” Rodgers said, via ESPN’s Rob Demosky. “You say, I’m only playing one more year and you have a sour taste in your mouth and you still have the drive and the passion to play one or two more years, I just don’t want to be typecast there- inside.
“So my focus is on this season. I’m never going to hang around in the offseason. The conversations I’ve had with [general manager] brian [Gutekunst] have been very honest and straightforward, and that’s not going to change, and we’ll sit down after the season, hopefully after a championship, and figure out what’s next.”
While questions surrounding Rodgers’ future will continue until the end of his career, there are also an abundance of dilemmas surrounding his receiving corps.
It’s really nothing new for Rodgers, who is about to play the last football season of his 30s. In recent seasons, there has been a call for more help to compliment Davante Adams, the top All-Pro.
This year, however, Adams left, having been traded to Las Vegas, and that departure left the Packers’ wide receiver closet pretty bare, or at least unfamiliar.
Ultimately, Adams wanted to leave Green Bay and travel to Las Vegas to reunite with his college teammate, quarterback Derek Carr.
Rodgers found no flaw in Adams’ reasoning for wanting to leave Titletown.
“We had really honest conversations about my future here, and how long I wanted to play, and his own thoughts on his future and where he wanted to play, live and raise his family,” Rodgers said, via Ryan Wood of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. “The team obviously stepped in and made a competitive, if not more compelling, offer. In the end, Davante thought it was best for him and his family to be in Vegas, so it was tough for sure. , but I love Tae and I love our connection. “I’m a bit biased, but it’s hard to think of a better player I’ve played with. He had a chance to be the all-time record in many categories as a receiver for us. I thought it might be a little nugget. it would kind of keep him here, but Tae made a decision that he felt was the best decision for him and his family, and I can’t blame him one bit.”
After skipping organized team activities, Tuesday was the first time in a long time that Rodgers spoke to the media, and also his first chance to get to know his new receivers. Among the new faces that will line up are free agent acquisition Sammy Watkins and a slew of rookies: second-round pick Christian Watson, fourth-round pick Romeo Doubs and seventh-round pick Samori Toure. .
“I miss the guys,” Rodgers said, “I love being with the guys. It’s been a great offseason. I’m enjoying my [training] team in Southern California and the work we’ve done. But it’s good to be back here with the guys. Good to meet Christian and Romeo and reacclimatize with some of the older guys. It’s just a matter of timing and they feel the cadence and the urgency and all that, and it’s just nice to be back in the building with these people.
“They’ve been great for me to take care of myself the way I need it most. Obviously it’s worked out for the last couple of years through my game, and I expect nothing less.”
The Packers’ minicamp runs through Thursday, then OTAs start again on June 13, but Rodgers said he won’t be in attendance for the latter. It is the immediate future.
Beyond that, he’s set to retire as a Packer, which at this point last year certainly looked in question. When Rodgers intends to call it a career is yet to be determined by the future Hall of Famer. For now, it’s all about preparing for 2022, a shot at a third straight MVP and an elusive second trip to the Super Bowl.