Paul from Phoenix, AZ
Mike, indubitably a monumental day yesterday.
And as Wes noted, I was on my way to the Brewers game when the news broke, taking one last respite before truly gearing up. Fitting after all, I guess.
Josh from Seattle, WA
So is it official?
Not yet, but it's expected to be by Thursday night.
Jason from Austin, TX
Here's a fun fact, or not so fun if you don't like feeling old. With Aaron Rodgers' departure, Dak Prescot will be the longest-tenured QB in the league with (one team), the Cowboys. Where does the time go?
Yet another way the NFL stands for "not for long," and another reason to appreciate what just was.
Joe from Swansea, IL
And so an era ends, memories that made us rich beyond measure. Too soon to ask your overarching memory of 12?
Just the jaw-dropping plays in big moments that I'll never forget having witnessed, the ones that upon reflection remind you that the extraordinary, no matter how frequent, is never ordinary. Third-and-10 to Jennings in the Super Bowl, fourth-and-8 from the 48 in Chicago, off one leg (and back foot) to his namesake in the Dez game, the Hail Marys in Detroit and Arizona, the last-minute deep-middle heave to Jordy on a frozen Soldier Field, Cook on the sideline in Dallas, the diving Jamaal at Arrowhead, back-to-back to Adams to set up Crosby in San Fran, … the list feels interminable, and for that we're all blessed.
Brandon from Summerville, SC
If you were going to rewatch one game from Rodgers' career to witness his greatness one last time before moving ahead to the Love era, which game would you pick?
The 2010 NFC Divisional playoff at Atlanta. Easy call.
Terry from Green Bay, WI
Good morning II. Well, it finally happened. The only surprise is the conditional pick in 2024 is based on playing time this year rather than Rodgers playing beyond this year. It's basically an injury condition for 2023 instead of a way for the Jets to protect themselves against Rodgers retiring after this year. I call that a win for the Packers. In Gutey we trust!
It's interesting that after all the hullabaloo swirling around potential trade conditions on both sides involving how long Rodgers plays and/or how successful the Jets are, none of that factored into the final equation. Just garden-variety injury protection.
Thomas from Cedar Rapids, IA
It's going to be weird hoping Aaron Rodgers sucks so we get a good draft pick.
Those rooting interests I leave up to all Packers fans to decide for themselves.
Jesus from El Paso, TX
I love the consistency we enjoyed with Rodgers, and I also love intrigue that comes with a team going through metamorphosis at its most important position. I recall Mr. Ketchman writing something along the lines of Mr. Gutekunst living or dying by the Jordan Love pick. Do you see Gutey's career in a similar light? Thanks in advance for the intense draft coverage and for feeding my love of the drama all year long.
Because the Gutekunst-LaFleur-Rodgers regime did not advance to or win a Super Bowl, I think the legacies of both the GM and head coach will be tied even more tightly to what they accomplish with Love. I don't believe either leader is daunted by or concerned about that, because it comes with the territory.
Bob from Grand Rapids, MI
This question demands to be asked, if only so you can finally boot it through the fabled laser goal posts to infinity (and beyond)! How important will it be for AR to attend OTAs with his new teammates?
I couldn't care less, but I'm going to have one last word on this subject. Last year, if you had given me the choice of Rodgers attending OTAs or Christian Watson being healthy and available for all of training camp, I would have taken the latter in a heartbeat. Another easy call. Moving on.
Michael from Grovetown, GA
Last year Christian Watson showed up looking kind of skinny and awkward, but by the end he looked ripped and confident. Many of the draftniks talk about prospects needing strength and weight, and once they get on a team they start transforming quickly. My question is, why aren't they doing that already? These top-tier schools have excellent training facilities and strength coaches, what's the hold up?
Not all early 20s bodies are mature enough or ready for that process. Timelines in human nature can vary, widely.
Christopher from Frederick, MD
I'll ask the same question after the draft, but I'd like to know your opinion pre-draft as well: Who, in your opinion, is the favorite to win the AFC East?
It's still Josh Allen and the Bills to me until someone proves otherwise.
Jimmy from West Fargo, ND
Good morning everyone! As much as I dislike the idea of any team starting the season off with a divisional game, do you think we'll be getting an Aaron Rodgers-Josh Allen matchup Week 1? Maybe a Sunday or Monday night primetime game? From a ratings and story standpoint, why waste any time and get right to the main course that everybody is looking forward to? Personally, I don't see any other potential game for the Jets unless KC wants to start their Super Bowl defense off on the road.
Jets-Bills in Week 1 primetime (or 3:25 p.m. CT) makes a lot of sense.
Mike from Charlotte, NC
Frankly, once the NFL sanctioned gambling it sent a message of legitimacy and set in motion all of which has happened and will happen according to Murphy's Law. The question is, when a referee gets caught gambling on NFL games, how will people react?
I've made my playing-with-fire sentiments rather clearly known in this space, but to answer your question, the NBA survived a referee gambling scandal just fine a little over 15 years ago, and should one occur in the NFL, it too will be a news bonanza that eventually becomes a blip.
Steve from Flagstaff, AZ
So I may be assuming that No. 12 is the next in line to be in the Ring of Honor at Lambeau. How long after Aaron officially retires can the Packers bring him back and enshrine him like they did with Brett?
I'm not saying this will be followed/repeated exactly, but for a frame of reference, the timeline with Favre was as follows: Four years after his retirement, in summer 2015, Favre was inducted into the Packers Hall of Fame and his No. 4 was retired. For the 2015 Thanksgiving game, his name and retired number were added to the other five underneath the north end zone scoreboard. He was then inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame at five years post-retirement, in 2016, and at an October game that season, his name and career years were added to the Lambeau sideline façade with the franchise's other Canton members.
Phil from Portland, OR
The Rodgers to the Jets trade is certainly bringing up a lot of really interesting comparisons to Favre and how his career ended in GB, but in that trade the Packers only got a conditional fourth-round pick. Why do you think Rodgers is getting the Packers so many more draft picks? Is he really that much better at 40 than Favre was?
That's not the issue. It's the circumstances. Back in 2008, the unretired Favre showed up during training camp demanding his job back or to be released. The Packers, who had moved on to Rodgers, didn't want to give him his outright release, believing he'd just sign with the rival Vikings (who had been investigated for tampering). So they found a trade partner willing to give them something, even if the compensation wasn't commensurate with the player being dealt. It was a totally different situation that just happens to involve the same team as now, the Jets.
Arnie from Kirkwood, MO
In regards to the draft, past and present: AR it seems was somewhat disgruntled over the lack of playmakers drafted in the early rounds during his time in GB. Was this partially a product of his ability of play? Maybe the front office thought he could overcome certain obstacles? Now, we may draft offensive weapons in the early rounds to assist JL as he is unproven?
I disagree with the premise. "Lack of playmakers drafted in the early rounds"? These guys weren't first-round picks, but Nelson, Randall Cobb, Lacy, Adams, AJ Dillon and Watson were all drafted in the second round in the Rodgers era. Five offensive linemen also were drafted in the first two rounds in that time, plus five tight ends, two more receivers and another running back in the third round. Not every top-100 pick worked out, of course. That said, I do believe Rodgers' abilities routinely kept the offense ahead of the defense, which was never able to fashion a top-flight unit after Capers' first two years despite the repeated substantial investments. That was really the hang-up in the bigger picture, not the common (and somewhat lazy) narrative that the Packers didn't spend first-round picks on offensive weapons.
Jeffrey from Eveleth, MN
The four premier positions in the NFL are QB, LT, edge, and cornerback. The Pack had four of the best in the league, but we couldn't bring home the Lombardi. That kind of stings a little. Not sure when that will happen again.
The LT wasn't available during the last two playoff runs. The corner wasn't (eight snaps doesn't qualify) in the last one. It's not just having them. It's having them play and play well in the biggest games. The QB had his letdowns at key times, too. It's all part of it.
Tomasso from Urbana, IL
Many commentators are saying the Packers are anxious to see what Love can do. My question is are they anxious or eager?
I believe the organization is eager. The fans are both.
Scott from Reno, NV
I don't know that I've ever experienced so many mixed emotions. Relief that the waiting is over. Glad that the trade was fair. Sad that the relationship with 12 had to end this way. Tired of the drama. Hopeful that Jordan Love is the next great Packer QB. Excited for the future no matter what. Anxious for Thursday night so we can hear "with the 13th pick in the NFL draft, the Green Bay Packers select Peter Skoronski." How you feeling?
I see what you did there, going all-in on the legacy choice. I'm no more clear on what the Packers will do, only sure they'll have more options now as far as available players and potential trades. It's an exciting place to be.
Brian from Maple Grove, MN
Man, I'm glad the trade has been made and pleasantly surprised and happy with what Gutey was able to get in return for Rodgers! He's now got a lot of flexibility in this year's draft. Going into the draft do you think Gutey specifically targets a player or players he wants to draft like Ted did with Clay Matthews in '09?
I'm sure he has his targets and where he feels he can get them at good value. Lots of folks are asking about the Packers' prospects for moving up or down in the early rounds now. Looking at Green Bay's first four picks once everything's finalized with the Jets (13, 42, 45, 78) and their value on the trade chart, here are some possible scenarios: To move up from 13, the third-rounder could get the Packers into the top 10, or one of the second-rounders maybe top six. Combining a second and third could get another crack at the bottom of the first. Combining both twos could earn another top 20 pick. Dropping back a few spots in the first could net another third. Falling back a ways in the second, same thing. Flexibility is abundant, and anytime Gutekunst has possessed it, he's used it.
Steve from Plover, WI
I can live with that deal.
And one way or another, the Packers will go into next year's draft with three picks in the first two rounds again.
Jim from Pompano Beach, FL
The Packers have four picks in the seventh. Wouldn't you think that there's gonna be a hidden gem in there?
The more swings you take late on Saturday, the more chances for a surprise hit. The Packers drafted four seventh-rounders last year in Tariq Carpenter, Jonathan Ford, Rasheed Walker and Samori Toure. All have opportunity knocking in the year(s) ahead. The last Green Bay seventh-rounder to get a second contract was (I believe) Brad Jones.
Mark from De Pere, WI
Good morning gentlemen. I was pleased with what the Packers got in the Rodgers trade but a bit confused. Doing the math pick 170 should be a sixth-round and 207 a seventh-rounder. The announcement was a fifth and sixth. Sounds better yet for the Pack or is my math that bad?
Compensatory picks make every round beginning with the third longer than 32 selections. Once again, there's a reason for the no math rule.
Tim from Clear Lake, IA
I see Aaron Rodgers is going to wear No. 8 for the Jets. Any idea why he didn't take that number when he came to the Packers? Was someone else really important wearing that number?
Ryan Longwell, then the franchise's all-time leading scorer, had it when Rodgers was a rookie.
Barbara from Jackson, WI
"K9 has the dawg in him" ... BRILLIANT. Was that all Wes or did I miss a movie reference?
I can never be sure, but if Wes thought of that nickname for Nixon on his own, that's pretty solid.
Mike from New Orleans, LA
When the Pack plays a night game during the season the next morning's II is usually delayed an hour or two. Seeing how I built my entire morning routine around the 8:30 a.m. release, should I make alternate plans for the mornings after the first couple rounds?
The plan as of now is to post the Friday and Saturday columns at the normal time.
David from Henderson, NV
Begun, the Love era has.
First the Raiders, next the A's and now maybe Yoda have all moved to Nevada? What gives?
Henry from Brown Deer, WI
Is it football time yet? Isn't the draft this week?
T-minus one day and counting.
Mark from Westminster, CO
My prediction on the draft. Something will happen that at least one fan will say, "See I told ya so," and another fan will say, "Whoa, I never saw that coming." How'd I do?