Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers admitted to the media after his team's last-second loss to the 49ers that he wasn't expecting to have to be talking about his future—with or without the franchise—just yet. But one quote from his post-game press conference is getting a great deal of attention Sunday morning.
Rodgers was asked if he thought it was still possible to win a Super Bowl with the Packers, or whether this season was his last shot. He replied, making clear he's not looking to stick around for a "rebuild" if that's the direction the team takes.
"I don't know. That's a fair question," he said. "Definitely one I've thought about. But there are a lot of decisions to be made. Key players, a lot of guys who played tonight… so many guys whose contracts are up or on the brink or salary cap stuff. So, a lot of decisions to be made. I don't want to be part of a rebuild if I'm going to keep playing. So a lot of decisions in the next couple of months."
Why would the Packers potentially have to do a rebuild after finishing the regular season as the NFC's top seed? The simple answer is financial constraints.
The Packers are likely to be more than $40 million over the salary cap heading into the 2022 season, meaning the team's brass could be forced to make a number of cost-saving personnel decisions. As a result, it's possible such restrictions could lead to less-talented rosters than the ones Rodgers has played with over the past few seasons.
Still, Rodgers wasn't willing to commit to any kind of decision fresh off the crushing loss.
"It's tough to say at this point," he said. "I don't think it's fair to anybody or to myself to really go down those paths at this point. It's disappointing. Sad. And fresh. So a lot of conversations in the next week or so, and start to contemplate after that."
Green Bay's loss is the latest in a series of playoff shortcomings under coach Matt LaFleur, who has been the team's coach since 2019. The Packers have lost to the 49ers twice and the Buccaneers once as they have failed to reach the Super Bowl over the past three seasons.
Rodgers, a first-team All-Pro, finished this past season with 4,115 passing yards and 37 touchdowns with just four interceptions.. What he eventually chooses to do will be one of the NFL offseason's biggest stories.
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