Rodgers was ‘90% retired’ when he entered his ‘darkness retreat’
By Ryan Morik
Before entering his “darkness retreat,” Aaron Rodgers, in his own words, was “90% retired” and was ready to move on from the Green Bay Packers.
When he emerged from the darkness, the quarterback still was ready to get out of Wisconsin. But Rodgers decided to become a New York Jet, and he’s loving his decision with the team opening training camp,
Rodgers admitted he wanted to retire a Packer and to be one of “the Tim Duncans, the [Derek] Jeters, the Kobes [Bryant] of the world,” but he noted it was time for a change.
“This has definitely rejuvenated me. I’m excited to be in a new spot, excited to meet the new guys and just be around it all,” Rodgers told ESPN New York radio’s Rick DiPietro and Dave Rothernberg on Friday.
Rodgers has enjoyed everything the Big Apple has to offer. Just hours and days after being officially introduced as a New York Jet, he was taking in Knicks and Rangers playoff games at Madison Square Garden. In May, he attended a Taylor Swift Eras Tour show at the home of his new team, MetLife Stadium.
“This was a great opportunity for me. It is fun to just have everything so new, because there’s new people to meet, there’s new places to go,” Rodgers said. “I have really enjoyed the city, being able to go out to restaurants and concerts and MSG. You got so many sporting events. That’s been really fun for me. As much as I love Green Bay and have so much affection for that place, it’s a bit slower.”
Rodgers is entering his 19th season, and he’ll be 40 in December, when he hopes the Jets will be close to clinching their first playoff berth since the 2010 season. So, retirement isn’t exactly far away.
But the four-time MVP feels he owes it to the organization to play more than one season.
“I’m not a big cliché guy. Most people would say, ‘I’m taking this one day at a time or one year at a time,’ but the Jets gave up a lot for me. So, to play just one year, I think, would be a disservice,” said Rodgers.
“Now, if that one year turns out to be a magical year, who knows? But it’s more than that. It’s how my body feels. … But the way I feel now, I feel like I could play a number of years.”
New York went 7-10 last season. Despite missing the playoffs, the Jets have rising young talent. They have the reigning offensive and defensive rookies of the year in GarrettWilson and Sauce Gardner, respectively, the latter of whom was a first-team All-Pro. And running back Breece Hall, who was well on his way to winning top offensive rookie honors before tearing an ACL midseason, figures to be healthy for 2023.