By Alex Raskin Sports News Editor for Dailymail.com
05:21 Mar 12, 2023, update 08:42 Mar 12, 2023
In another sign of hope for Jets fans, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers seemed to indicate a move to New York could be happening in the near future.
The four-time MVP was asked by former Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall about his rumored move to New York on a recent podcast, and responded by telling the retired NFL star: “Stay tuned. “
When Marshall asked for more information, Rodgers, 39, responded by saying “that’s all I’m giving you”, before adding “there’s a time limit for all of this”.
That “time limit” Rodgers is referring to could be the NFL’s Wednesday deadline for all teams to be under the league’s $224.8 million salary cap.
The Jets cleared some wiggle room Saturday by renegotiating several existing contracts with players, reportedly in an effort to make room for Rodgers’ $31 million cap for the 2023 season. In total, the Jets cleared a cap of $15.1 million by restricting the deals of left guard Laken Tomlinson, cornerback DJ Reed and tight end Tyler Conklin.
Marshall and Rodgers were speaking at the RX Flag football charity event in Laguna Beach, Calif., on the alum’s podcast, I Am Athlete.
Owner Woody Johnson and front desk staff spoke with the Green Bay Packers quarterback in his native California this week, and while there was optimism ahead of the trip that they could convince Rodgers to accepting a move to New York, the Jets are now more confident after the meeting.
On Twitter, ESPN’s Dianna Russini explained that “Johnson left the reunion excited and pleased with the potential match.”
Asked by Marshall about the reunion, the low-key Rodgers said “it’s always interesting to meet important people in sports,” but didn’t offer much more.
Packers president/CEO Mark Murphy confirmed the team had granted the Jets permission to speak with Rodgers and would honor a trade request if he made one.
Murphy made the comments on Friday while speaking on a broadcast of the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association women’s basketball championships broadcast on the WCWF television station in Green Bay.
“We really hope we can come to a resolution that not only works for Aaron but for us,” Murphy said.
Rodgers has said since the end of the season that he is still deciding whether to return to the Packers, trade or retire. Rodgers also noted the possibility that the Packers might want to move on and hand 2020 first-round starting quarterback Jordan Love.
The Jets have already made a major move apparently aimed at enticing Rodgers to seek a trade from New York by signing his former offensive coordinator, Nathaniel Hackett.
Another move could be in the works, according to Tyler Dunne, NFL Reporterwho says the Jets are one of four teams interested in former Packers running back Jamaal Williams.
Rodgers hasn’t made a career decision since emerging from a four-day dark retreat in the Oregon wilderness, where he had to consider his next move, whether it’s retirement, forcing a trade or another season in Green Bay.
The Jets appear motivated to make a deal after missing out on free agent quarterback Derek Carr, who agreed to a four-year, $150 million contract Monday with the New Orleans Saints. The former Las Vegas Raiders quarterback had been considered a viable option for the Jets, who were reportedly interested in replacing struggling starter Zach Wilson with a more experienced veteran.
Meanwhile, Jets players seemingly forgot all about Wilson as they took to social media to beg Rodgers to come to New York.
Jets cornerback Sauce Gardner and running back Breece Hall didn’t make the trip out West, but they did make their selling points on social media.
Gardner directly mentioned Rodgers on Twitter, telling him, “I promise if you become a Jet, I won’t pick you in practice” and promising to burn off the cheesehead hat he wore in Green Bay all season. last when the Jets upset the Packers 27-10 at Lambeau Field.
Hall, likewise, seemed excited to play with Rodgers.
“Don’t mind…I’m just protesting @Aaron Rodgers,” the 21-year-old running back tweeted.
The declining Packers fell to 8-9 last season and appear to be in need of a rebuild that could be helped by trading Rodgers and his remaining salary.
Rodgers has $108.8 million remaining on his current contract, which runs through 2026, although that season and 2025 are considered ‘fictitious’ years that are only listed for salary cap purposes.
His deal is fully guaranteed for $59.5 million this season, most of which comes in the form of a bonus before the start of the regular season, according to ESPN.
But the Jets wouldn’t necessarily suffer from cap space if they acquired it, as Rodgers’ bonus was pro-rated against his current three-year contract. In total, he would count $15.8 million toward his team’s salary cap in 2023 and $32.5 million for 2024, according to ESPN.
The Packers, meanwhile, would still keep $40.3 million of Rodgers’ 2023 salary on their books in case he was traded. That’s a whopping 18% of the NFL’s $224.8 million salary cap for this year.
The Jets are coming off a 7-10 season, in which they boasted the No. 5 defense, as well as Offensive and Defensive Rookies of the Year with wide receiver Garrett Wilson and cornerback Sauce Gardner. .
The biggest areas of concern for coach Robert Saleh’s team were along the offensive line and at quarterback, where Zach Wilson finished 34th in the NFL with a dismal 72.8 quarterback rating.
Fourth-year quarterback Mike White has played well at times, but he’s also entering free agency and it’s unclear if he’ll return.