Will Packers get a first-round pick in trade return for QB Aaron Rodgers?

It feels like the Green Bay Packers are on the verge of trading Aaron Rodgers to the Jets, but what New York sends back in return may be a bit underwhelming.

I was never of the mindset that the Packers were going to get two first-round picks for Rodgers, but I did think that one first-round pick was the floor, with perhaps a conditional draft pick or a player added in.

Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated suggests otherwise, however, recently saying that based on what he knows, the Jets’ 2023 second-round pick and a 2025 conditional pick based on how well Rodgers plays and if he plays beyond this season could get the deal done.

Mike Garafolo of NFL Network would add that this isn’t a situation where the Packers are looking for an offer they can’t refuse. Rather, they want as fair of a deal as possible to just move on.

While, yes, this is still four-time MVP and Super Bowl champion Aaron Rodgers we are talking about, the Packers have a lot going against them when it comes to driving up the asking price.

For starters, there doesn’t seem to be a very big market all that interested in making a trade. In fact, it seems like it’s just the Jets, and it has been that way for some time now. With Rodgers potentially playing only one more season, the only type of team that could be interested is one that believes it is on the brink of being a Super Bowl contender but doesn’t have a quarterback. That right there already shrinks the pool of potential trade partners drastically.

In addition to that, the Raiders were reportedly not interested, and who knows how willing the Packers are to send Rodgers to another NFC team. Rodgers doesn’t have a no-trade clause, but Green Bay will only send him somewhere that he’s okay with.

Rodgers’ contract is another potential issue that could be driving down the price as well. The acquiring team incurs a cap hit in 2023 of just $15.79 million, but unless the Packers agree to pick up a portion of Rodgers’ $58.5 million guaranteed salary, the new team will have to pay all of that.

It’s not all that difficult to see why multiple teams wouldn’t be lining up to pay $60 million for perhaps only one year of quarterback play while also sending away a first-round pick and then some – especially when Rodgers is coming off a season where he looked closer to below-average than elite.

One thing that the Packers have in their favor is that we are all well aware that the Jets want Rodgers, and if they don’t land him, their next best option is Jimmy Garoppolo. However, that could be negated by the fact that it has become clear that the Packers are very willing and ready to move on from Rodgers.

The Packers certainly missed their window last offseason to maximize their return for Rodgers, but at the time, he was coming off back-to-back MVPs, and the team clearly didn’t feel as confident as they do now in Jordan Love. Things have now drastically changed in all facets, including the potential trade compensation the Packers get in return.

Of course, as of now, these trade rumors are just speculation. Hopefully, if traded, things will work out better for the Packers. But based on what is being said by reporters like Breer and Garofolo, along with the reasons just discussed, I’d temper expectations. A first-round pick in return could be the ceiling of this deal and may require the Packers to eat some of that guaranteed money to do so.

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Story originally appeared on Packers Wire