The Denver Broncos are reportedly gaining ground in potential business talks for Aaron Rodgers.
ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler said on Sports center Sunday that Rodgers is “digging” out of his business demand, and a move to Denver has become a source of intrigue:
“The Packers are always actively looking for solutions here; they try to keep an open line of communication with Aaron Rodgers and his agent, Dave Dunn. So no short-term pull. But a lot of people in the league believe Aaron Rodgers. is indeed “hollowed out”, and some think it wants out in the West. Denver is a buzzing team in league circles. A source told me that Denver is “monitoring” this situation right now. But they also come out on draft days, and they’re in team-building mode. They really love Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater so they’re not committed or tied to anything. about 60-40, they think Rodgers is being treated. ”
Rodgers’ push to leave Green Bay has become the biggest story in the NFL over the past two weeks, even as the Packers continue to say publicly that they have no interest in moving the reigning league MVP. . Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst has made several public comments since news of Rodgers’ commercial demand became public, reaffirming the team’s commitment to the quarterback.
“I had no [trade] discussions with any team. I got a call from a team Thursday night after all the news was posted. I said no. That was the end of the conversation, ”Gutekunst told NBC Sports’ Peter King.
A rift between Rodgers and the Packers has been brewing for over a year. Rodgers was angered by the team’s apparent lack of urgency in the 2020 NFL Draft, with the Packers taking care of saves in the first three rounds rather than focusing on instant impact talent. The most notable of those picks, first-round quarterback Jordan Love, also sent a signal to Rodgers that he may no longer be a part of the team’s long-term plans.
Rodgers admitted he wasn’t “thrilled” by the choice at the time, and the decision apparently cut off any chance he and Gutekunst had of a working relationship. Athletic’s Bob McGinn reported that Rodgers called Gutekunst “Jerry Krause” in the team’s group discussions last season. Krause, the late 1990s Chicago Bulls Hall of Fame general manager, is widely blamed for the team’s disbandment amid a falling out with coach Phil Jackson and a contentious relationship with Michael Jordan.
It’s unclear whether Rodgers would return to Green Bay with Gutekunst still as the team’s general manager.
The Broncos are seemingly natural, because they’ve done what Green Bay hasn’t done in recent seasons: invested a significant chunk of their draft resources in young talent. Denver has added Courtland Sutton, Noah Fant, Jerry Jeudy, KJ Hamler and Javonte Williams in high-leverage rounds since 2018.
Their biggest roster issue is arguably at the quarterback level, with Drew Lock failing to develop in his first two seasons in the NFL and Bridgewater being a below-par starting QB.
The Rodgers trade would instantly catapult Denver into the playoff – and possibly the Super Bowl – conversation.