The drama is never short on Draft Day. Now, it’s Aaron Rodgers rumors, but the alarms are sounding so loudly, it’s growing past the point of rumors. Hours before the first pick is announced, Adam Schefter dropped a bombshell on the NFL world: reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers reportedly told the Green Bay Packers that he does not want to return to the team.
Never in the history of the NFL has a reigning MVP been traded the year after winning the award and just twice has a reigning MVP not played for their team the following year (both retired).
Naturally, this threw sportsbooks and Packers fans into a tailspin.
Effect On Packers Futures
Before the news was dropped, the Packers sat third in projected 2021 wins (11) behind the Chiefs, Buccaneers, and tied with the Ravens. In the minutes following Schefter’s report, DraftKings Sportsbook removed their win totals on Green Bay. Other legal US sportsbooks did the same.
Depending on how the Packers handle Round 1 of Thursday’s NFL Draft, the win totals will be updated and reposted. Until then, it’s not likely that US sportsbooks will settle on a new number.
Odds on the 2021-22 NFC North winner have also been removed from the book (Packers were favorites).
Odds on the Packers to win Super Bowl LVI remain, however, with Green Bay sitting sixth-most likely to lift the Lombardi Trophy at . During the precarious period that is Day 1 of the draft, it’s unlikely that sportsbooks will be updating those odds.
Rodgers also remains second on odds tables to win the 2021-22 NFL MVP award at +1000, with both DraftKings and William Hill remaining steadfast in keeping their odds up.
Where Aaron Rodgers Rumors Could Go Next
The short answer is: anywhere.
In the recent days (as recent as the night before the draft), a couple teams had been rumored in making phone calls to the Packers about trading for Rodgers. The most recent– and most enticing– is the San Francisco 49ers.
In 2005, the 49ers (Rodgers’ hometown team) famously passed on him to draft Alex Smith first overall. Rodgers slid all the way to Green Bay at No. 24 and the rest is history. The 49ers hold the third overall pick after trading for it from Miami, a pick they could use to completely shake up the draft.
Another California team to be worthy of consideration is the Los Angeles Rams, who– despite trading for Matthew Stafford earlier this offseason– also reportedly made calls about Rodgers’ availability. His current head coach, Matt LaFleur, is a Sean McVay disciple.
Pro Football Talk reports Rodgers “wish list” is the 49ers, Broncos or Raiders. Teams like New England and the New York Jets have the draft capital to make a move on Rodgers as well.
Implications For Draft Night
If a team is going to make a move for Aaron Rodgers, tonight would be the night do it. Rather than drafting a young quarterback and trying to trade him or future draft picks, teams like the 49ers or Patriots could make the Packers an offer they can’t refuse. It’s not a novel concept, but a Rodgers deal may be the biggest draft-night deal since Mike Ditka traded his entire draft class to draft Ricky Williams in 1999.
Only time will tell if a Rodgers deal could be done during the draft. Between now and then, we’ll all be on the edge of our seats.