So when will Jordan Love actually replace Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay?
The Green Bay Packers put a succession plan in place by drafting Jordan Love in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft. Aaron Rodgers has thus responded by being an NFL MVP favorite heading into Week 16.
Spending a first-round pick on Love means the team is going to want him on the field at some point. They believed he was too good to pass up as a potential quarterback of the future, so now the question is when will that major switch be made. Let’s look at a realistic timeline.
When Love can supplant Rodgers
It should be safe to assume the Packers will run it back with Rodgers in 2021. He may win the MVP and the team would take a major dead cap hit in a trade. In 2022 is where the possibility of either trading Rodgers or outright letting him go gets more likely.
A trade would be ideal and should bring a nice haul in return. However, the team should be loyal to the quarterback and if the team he desires isn’t going to make a deal he can be cut. That is if the Packers want to be that thoughtful.
Rodgers’ dead cap figure drops to $17.2 million in 2022 and goes to $2.8 million in the final year of his contract in 2023. The assumption should be the front office has a hard deadline of when Love is going to play. Rodgers isn’t getting any younger and will enter 2022 as a 38-year-old.
Even if Rodgers wins a Super Bowl next season, Love should be getting handed the job starting in 2022. The only way this would change is if the coaches make it clear to the front office he is just not going to cut it in the NFL. But they may never truly know without game reps.
Drafting Love seems to be the extra motivation Rodgers needed in 2021. Now he is stuck in a similar situation to what Brett Favre dealt with when Rodgers himself was drafted. Moving on from Rodgers perhaps too early may be done to make a clean break and start fresh without extra drama.
Assuming the plan stays on track, 2022 could be a year of change in Green Bay.