Conservations between Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers regarding his future "never transpired" this offseason, according to general manager Brian Gutekunst.
Gutekunst addressed reporters at the NFL's annual league meetings and said he attempted to contact Rodgers "many times" since their last meeting in January, shortly after the conclusion of the Packers' season, before the quarterback had publicly stated his intention to be traded to the New York Jets.
"I was really looking forward to the conversations with Aaron to see how he fit into that," Gutekunst said Monday via ESPN. "Those never transpired. So there came a time where we had to make some decisions, so we went through his representatives to try to talk to him [about] where were we going with our team. At that point, they informed us that he would like to be traded to the Jets."
Gutekunst said he believed that discussions would conclude again when both sides had time to go over the situation.
"Our inability to reach him or for him to respond in any way, I think at that point, I had to do my job and kind of reach out [to other teams] and understand that a trade could be possible and see who was interested," Gutekunst said via ESPN.
On March 15, Rodgers publicly acknowledged his intention to play for the Jets next season.
"Since Friday, my intention was to play and play for the NY Jets," Rodgers said during an appearance on the Pat McAfee Show.
Rodgers claimed that the Packers' past decision to draft Jordan Love in the first-round of the 2020 NFL Draft as a sign that the franchise was ready to move on. The four-time MVP met with Jets owner Woody Johnson and a contingent of team representatives in California on March 7.
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.
In January, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that the Jets were "a very real scenario" in a possible trade for Rodgers even prior to the hiring of offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, who had previously held the same position in Green Bay and Rodgers 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).
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