Add another chapter to the Aaron Rodgers saga as it pertains to his disconnect and frustration with the Green Bay Packers that reportedly has gotten so bad that Rodgers is determined to play for another team moving forward.
Rodgers, 37, appeared on SportsCenter on Monday night and addressed his situation with Kenny Mayne, in Mayne’s final show with the network. It marked the first time that Rodgers has publicly addressed the situation.
“With my situation, look it’s never been about the draft pick, picking Jordan,” Rodgers said (h/t ESPN’s Rob Demovsky). “I love Jordan; he’s a great kid. [We’ve had] a lot of fun to work together. Love the coaching staff, love my teammates, love the fan base in Green Bay. An incredible 16 years. It’s just kind of about a philosophy and maybe forgetting that it is about the people that make the thing go. It’s about character, it’s about culture, it’s about doing things the right way.”
Rodgers is coming off an MVP season and led the Packers to the NFC Championship game for the second consecutive season.
“A lot of this was put in motion last year, and the wrench was just kind of thrown into it when I won MVP and played the way I played last year,” Rodgers said. “This is just kind of, I think, a spill-out of all that. But it is about the people, and that’s the most important thing. Green Bay has always been about the people — from Curly Lambeau being owner and founder to the ’60s with [Vince] Lombardi and Bart Starr and all those incredible names to the ’90s teams with coach [Mike] Holmgren and Favrey [Brett Favre] and the Minister of Defense [Reggie White] to the run that we’ve been on. It’s about the people.”
Rodgers heaped praise on his Packers teammates and coaching staff, but notably left out Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst, whom he suggested was at the core of his frustration with the organization.
“I think sometimes people forget what really makes an organization,” Rodgers said. “History is important, legacy of so many people who’ve come before you. But the people, that’s the most important thing. People make an organization, people make a business and sometimes that gets forgotten. Culture is built brick by brick, the foundation of it by the people, not by the organization, not by the building, not by the corporation. It’s built by the people.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to play with a number of amazing, amazing people and got to work for some amazing people as well. It’s those people that build the foundation of those entities. I think sometimes we forget that.”
The Packers have remained committed to Gutekunst and do not appear willing to trade Rodgers, so this could be a long journey before we see any resolution to the drama.