GREEN BAY, Wis. — About two weeks after Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers said he intends to play for the New York Jets next season, Packers head coach Matt LaFleur spoke about Rodgers' likely departure.
A deal has not been made between the Packers and Jets, but still, LaFleur told the media he has "nothing but love and appreciation for what Aaron has done for so many in our organization."
Rodgers told Pat McAfee that his intention is to play for the Jets next season back on March 15. He said at the time that the Packers were "digging their heels in" when negotiating with the Jets, and to this day, a deal has not been made.
Rodgers remains under contract with the Packers until the two teams can come to an agreement. Still, LaFleur seems to have accepted he will have a new starting QB.
LaFleur said he and Rodgers had "a lot of great times together, won a lot of football games together," in their four years. He said, "a lot of people have been rewarded, quite frankly, because of his ability to go out there and play."
The statements from LaFleur come just one day after Packers General Manager Brian Gutekunst spoke to the media about Rodgers.
According to Matt Schneidman with The Athletic, Gutekunst said he tried to contact Rodgers "many times" during the offseason to discuss his place with the team. This conflicts with Rodgers' previous comments on the Pat McAfee Show when he said he would have liked the Packers to have direct conversations with him about moving on, Schneidman reports.
"Our inability to reach him or for him to respond in any way, I think at that point... I had to do my job," Guntekunst said. "Certainly whenever a player may have issues, you prefer that they talk to you directly and not do it in the media, but that's not necessarily the way he goes about it and that's okay."
Gutenkunst told reporters there is no timeline for a Rodgers trade, and all options are on the table. But with that said, he said conversations have not started to trend toward Rodgers playing for the Packers next season.
#Packers GM Brian Gutekunst just met with a small group of media here in Phoenix.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 27, 2023
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After announcing his intention to play for the Jets, Rodgers gave a bit of a farewell to Packers fans. On the Pat McAfee show, he said, "I love that town so much."
Rodgers continued by saying, "that town, that region, that state has given me so much love and support from the day I was drafted... to when I took over, winning the Super Bowl, all the incredible memories through the years."
The Packers quarterback said Green Bay will always have a place in his heart.
"That place is always going to be really really special to me, as are those fans," Rodgers said. "I love you Green Bay, thank you. We'll meet again."