Posted on: February 8, 2023, 02:19h.
Last updated on: February 8, 2023, 03:50h.
NFL superstar Aaron Rodgers isn’t officially a free agent. But with his longtime relationship with the Green Bay Packers strained and the future Hall of Fame quarterback mulling retirement or relocating to a new team, his forthcoming decision is one of the biggest questions to be answered this off-season.
The Las Vegas Raiders are certainly interested in Rodgers’ services. The Silver and Black’s first three seasons in Nevada haven’t gone as team officials hoped.
The Raiders have enjoyed only one winning season since relocating from Oakland to Las Vegas and have endured plenty of scandals since arriving in Sin City. The team’s former coach, Jon Gruden, resigned in 2021 after it was revealed that he sent racist, misogynistic, and homophobic emails. Also that year, Henry Ruggs III, then a wide receiver for the team, was charged with vehicular manslaughter while DUI. His criminal case is ongoing.
The Raiders are seeking stability from the top down. The team thinks they’ve found that in coach Josh McDaniels and General Manager Dave Ziegler, despite the team’s poor record in 2022.
The team’s ownership is optimistic about the 2023-24 NFL season but remains in search of a franchise quarterback after agreeing to allow other teams to meet with former starter Derek Carr. By all accounts, it appears Raiders owner Mark Davis is ready for a new leader under center. The team has another week to trade Carr or release him from his contract.
Twice in a Generation
The opportunity to land a Super Bowl-winning quarterback who has four times been named the MVP of the NFL doesn’t happen often. Save for Tom Brady’s decision to leave the New England Patriots in 2020, Rodgers considering skipping Green Bay for a new team is one of the most coveted opportunities in recent NFL memory.
Rodgers last week competed in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, which he and PGA Tour partner Ben Silverman won. Rodgers admitted he heard from a variety of fans on hand at the golf tournament who expressed their wishes that he joins their NFL team next season.
“In years past, there have been a couple of years where we got ousted from the playoffs by the [San Francisco] Niners, and then I went and played at Pebble, and those years were very razzing, I would say, from the crowd. A lot of Niner yells and other various well-timed trash talk,” Rodgers said on “The Pat McAfee Show,” a YouTube sports program hosted by former NFL punter Pat McAfee.
This year was a lot more positive,” Rodgers continued. “The sentiment was very positive, people wanting me to get traded to their team, and the Raiders fans were probably the most vocal and the most numerous.”
Rodgers holds the single-season record for passer rating at 122.5 (2011), the lowest interception percentage in a regular season (0.3%, 2018), and the most consecutive passes without a pick (402).
Rodgers is a 10x Pro Bowl selection and ranks ninth all-time in total passing with 59,055 yards.
Super Bowl Plan
Rodgers plans to embark on a four-night “darkness retreat” where he’ll self-reflect and determine what his future holds. He says he’ll watch this Sunday’s Super Bowl LVII between the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs before going dark for a few days.
As for the big game, the Eagles remain slightly favored by a point and a half. The over/under is holding steady at around 51 points.