Aaron Rodgers plans to play for Green Bay Packers in 2021
The Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers appear to be nearing a resolution to a saga that has dominated the offseason.
Aaron Rodgers reportedly plans to play for the Green Bay Packers this season.
Rodgers' future with Green Bay has been in doubt since April, when, a year on from the Packers trading up to select his heir apparent Jordan Love in the first round of the 2020 draft, it was reported he had grown so disgruntled that he had told some within the organisation he did not wish to return to the team.
The reigning NFL MVP was not present for any of the Packers' offseason practices, skipping their mandatory minicamp, but NFL Media's Ian Rapoport reported on Monday that Rodgers had indicated his desire to play for Green Bay this year to people close to him.
Meanwhile, speaking at the Packers' annual shareholders meeting at Lambeau Field, president Mark Murphy said of Rodgers: "We want him back, we're committed to him for 2021 and beyond. He's our leader and we're looking forward to winning another Super Bowl."
General manager Brian Gutekunst explained: "We have been working tirelessly with Aaron and his representatives to resolve the issues [Rodgers has raised], and we are hopeful for a positive resolution."
Should Rodgers return for 2021, the Packers will be among the favourites to reach the Super Bowl, having progressed to the NFC Championship in each of the previous two seasons, losing to the San Francisco 49ers and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Rodgers produced one of the finest seasons of his Hall of Fame career in 2020, flourishing in his second year in head coach Matt LaFleur's offense to the tune of 4,299 passing yards, a career-high 48 touchdowns and just five interceptions.
Per Stats Perform data, he was third in the NFL in well-thrown percentage, delivering an accurate, well-thrown ball on 82.4 per cent of his pass attempts.
He was also third in pickable pass percentage. Rodgers threw an interceptable ball on only 2.23 per cent of his passes.
While the Packers will be expected to be an NFC powerhouse again with Rodgers under center, his return could prove to be just a case of delaying the inevitable. Green Bay can save over $22million against the cap next offseason by moving on from Rodgers, making a trade potentially much more palatable.
With or without Rodgers, the Packers will begin their 2021 campaign on September 12 against the New Orleans Saints.