Grant Halverson/Getty Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers is back for another round of training camp with the Green Bay Packers, indicating he may stay with his longtime team after all.
After reports of the reigning NFL MVP wanting to leave Wisconsin, Rodgers, 37, was spotted walking into training camp on Tuesday, with the team tweeting out his arrival.
One day earlier, ESPN’s Adam Schefter had reported that Rodgers appeared to be making headway in contract negotiations with the Packers, where he’s played for his entire 16-year professional career. The agreement would include canceling the final year of his contract, making it more likely that the upcoming 2021 season will be his last in Green Bay.
Rodgers was selected by the Packers as the 24th overall pick in the 2005 draft, and has three years remaining on his contract after signing a four-year, $134 million extension in August 2018.
Days before he was spotted at training camp, his fiancée Shailene Woodley retweeted a video that showed ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith talking about how Rodgers had been “disrespected” by the Packers. Later, Rodgers and teammate Davante Adams, whose future with the team was also unclear, fueled speculation by both posting a cryptic photo of Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen from The Last Dance, according to NBC News.
In the 2020 NFL Draft, the Packers used a first-round pick on quarterback Jordan Love, who was drafted as Rodgers’ heir apparent.
Still, Rodgers insisted that his issues with his longtime team did not stem from Love’s signing. Speaking to ESPN SportsCenter host Kenny Mayne in late May, Rodgers said, “I love Jordan. He’s a great kid. A lot of fun to work together. I love the coaching staff, love my teammates, love the fan base in Green Bay. Incredible, incredible 16 years.”
At that point, Rodgers teased, “Anything’s on the table.”
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Matt Stroshane Shailene Woodley and Aaron Rodgers
Rumors of Rodgers possibly leaving Green Bay were rampant after his postgame interview following the 31-26 loss to Tom Brady and the Tampa Buccaneers in the NFC championship game last season. “Lot of guys’ futures are uncertain, myself included,” Rodgers told reporters.
Additionally, the quarterback said, “There are a lot of unknowns going into this offseason now. I’m going to have to take some time away for sure to clear my head to kind of see what is going on with everything, but it’s pretty tough right now, especially thinking about the guys that may or may not be here next year.”
But days after, Rodgers seemed to clarify his remarks during an appearance on The Pat McAfee Show, saying at the time, “I don’t think there’s any reason why I wouldn’t be back,” and explaining: “There’s conversations to be had. I’m going to have them with the right people. But it’s the same conversations we have every single year. There’s no big, ‘I’m going to come to the table with I need this, this and this.’ “
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Rodgers concluded: “I’ve had these conversations for years. That’s part of being a leader on the squad and having a pulse on the team and the direction we’re going.”
Rodgers played college football for the California Golden Bears and was selected in the 2005 draft by the Packers. Then, the star won his first MVP award for the 2011 season, the same year he led the Packers to a Super Bowl XLV win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. He went on to earn his second title in 2014 and third in 2020.