New York Jets bosses believe they are “on the brink” of acquiring four-time MVP Aaron Rodgers, according to ESPN. Diana Russini.
Owner Woody Johnson and front office staff spoke with the Green Bay Packers quarterback in his native California this week, and while there was optimism ahead of the trip that they could convince Rodgers to agree to a move to New York, the Jets they are now more confident after the meeting.
On Twitter, Russini explained that “Johnson left the meeting excited and pleased with the potential matchup.”
The Jets are Packers were already discussing a trade for Rodgers, 39, before this week’s meeting, and are continuing to talk, according to Russini.
Johnson, general manager Joe Douglas, head coach Robert Saleh and offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett flew to California on Tuesday to be with Rodgers, ESPN reported earlier in the week.
New York Jets bosses believe they are on the verge of acquiring four-time MVP Aaron Rodgers, according to ESPN’s Dianna Russini.
Jets owner Woody Johnson (right), general manager Joe Douglas (left), head coach Robert Saleh and offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett flew to California on Tuesday with Rodgers, ESPN reported earlier in the week.
Rodgers hasn’t made any professional decisions since coming out of a dark four-day retreat in the Oregon desert, where he was expected to contemplate his next move, whether it be retiring, forcing a trade or another season in Green Bay.
The Jets appear motivated to make a deal after missing out on free agent quarterback Derek Carr, who agreed to a four-year, $150 million deal with the New Orleans Saints on Monday. The former Las Vegas Raiders quarterback had been considered a viable option for the Jets, who are rumored to be interested in replacing struggling starter Zach Wilson with a more experienced veteran.
Meanwhile, Jets players have apparently forgotten about Wilson entirely as they took to social media to beg Rodgers to come to New York.
Jets cornerback Willow Gardner and running back Breece Hall didn’t make the trip west, but they did make their sales pitches on social media.
Gardner directly mentioned Rodgers on Twitter, telling him, “I promise if you become a Jet, I won’t cut you out in practice” and vowing to burn the cheesehead hat he wore in Green Bay last season when the Jets caused a 27 -10 upset by the Packers at Lambeau Field.
Hall, similarly, seemed excited at the prospect of playing with Rodgers.
“Don’t worry about me… Just protesting @Aaron Rodgers,” the 21-year-old tweeted.
Jets CB Sauce Gardner and RB Breece Hall are pitching for Aaron Rodgers to move to New York
The declining Packers fell to 8-9 last season, and appear to be in need of a rebuild that could be helped by trading Rodgers and his remaining salary.
Rodgers has $108.8 million left on his current contract, which runs through 2026, though that season and 2025 are considered “fictional” years that are only on the books for salary cap purposes.
His contract is fully guaranteed for $59.5 million this season, most of which comes in the form of a bonus before the start of the regular season, according to ESPN.
But the Jets wouldn’t necessarily be suffering for the cap space if they acquired it, because Rodgers’ bonus was prorated on his current three-year contract. In all, he would have $15.8 million against his team’s salary cap in 2023 and $32.5 million for 2024, according to ESPN.
Meanwhile, the Packers would still have $40.3 million of Rodgers’ salary for 2023 on their books should they trade him. That’s a whopping 18 percent of the NFL’s $224.8 million salary cap for this year.
The Jets are coming off a 7-10 season, in which they boasted fifth-ranked defense, as well as offensive and defensive Rookie of the Year honors in receiver Garrett Wilson and cornerback Sauce Gardner.
The areas of greatest concern for coach Robert Saleh’s team were on the offensive line and at quarterback, where Zach Wilson finished 34th in the NFL with a dismal 72.8 quarterback rating.
Fourth-year quarterback Mike White played well at times, but he’s also entering free agency and it’s unclear if he’ll return.
Mike White (left) replaced the Jets last season when Zach Wilson moved down the order