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Actions Speak louder than the words in Matt Lafleur’s plan for Aaron Rodgers | Bleaching report

Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur talks to defender Aaron Rodgers, right, in the second half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, October 6, 2019 (AP Photo / Michael Ainsworth)

Michael Ainsworth / Associated Press

Last February, New York Giants general manager Dave Hetmanman repeatedly stated that he had not signed a large-scale successor, Odell Beckham Jr., just for an extension to trade it. A month later, he continued to do just that.

In May, New York jets had “no intention”

; of trading in star safety Jamal Adams. Two months later, he was sent to the Seattle Seahawks.

A few years ago, team owner Dan Snyder said he would never change the name of the NFL team in Washington. He changed his tune this summer, temporarily switching to the Washington football team while deciding on a permanent name.

Regarding individuals, they are equal for the NFL course. We have become desensitized to them, and owners, general managers and coaches often disagree with them because “circumstances change.”

That’s why Green Bay Packers head coach Matt Lafleur’s comments about defender Aaron Rodgers’ future are practically hollow.

“Right now, the most important thing is that Aaron is our defender and I’ve been seeing him here for a very long time,” LaFleur told Matt Schneidman of The Athletic this week. “No matter how long it is, I don’t think anyone knows. Nothing is guaranteed in this league. But I feel so lucky to be able to work with him every day.”

Indeed, little is guaranteed in professional football. For example, Rodgers is only guaranteed $ 17.2 million after the 2021 season, according to Spotrac, which allows the Packers to generate more than $ 20 million in salary savings by releasing or trading a player who will turn 38 by then.

Ben Margo / Associated Press

This off-season of 2022 is an obvious, natural transition point from Rodgers to the initial Jordan Love first round project that Packers is bidding to acquire, despite Rodgers’ presence in the depth-of-defense rankings and the significant needs of other positions.

LaFleur may insist that he sees Rodgers in Green Bay for “a very long time” – a vague phrase he has used twice since the draft – and may tell us that Love was the next name on the Packers’ draft board. But we all know that draft boards are unsure that a contender who trades in the first round for a backup defender is not pointless unless the organization has big plans for that player and that “really long time” means almost nothing to the qualifier who “Nothing is guaranteed.”

In April, LaFleur was asked to specify what he meant by “really long time”. His answer:

“You know how this league works. I know you’re tired of tiring me to say this, but it’s about improving with each passing day, and we’ll take it from week to week. In my mind, I think Aaron is by far the best. a defender I’ve ever been. I think he’s the best he’s ever played. I hope he can play until he decides he doesn’t want to play anymore. “

He hopes.

Michael Conroy / Associated Press

Any statements less confident or declarative than these would be extremely contradictory. This is the bare minimum of LaFleur, which says what it has to say about its current starter, because there is no need to stir the pot further.

Logic suggests that Brett Favre is more correct in suggesting that Rodgers “will play elsewhere” before his career ends. The two-time MVP says he still has a “strong desire” to play in his 40s, but that can’t happen in Green Bay without the Packers essentially losing the first round of Love.

Packers should have known that Rodgers would not be “excited” or “excited” by the decision to trade for Love, but they still sacrificed the first and fourth rounds to do so, instead of supporting Rodgers’ supporting cast for 2020.

Regardless of Love’s position on the Green Bay board, the front office went out of its way and ruffled feathers with a move that didn’t help the team in the short term, endangered the chemistry on and off the field, and probably set a countdown clock. of Rodgers in Green Bay.

Charlie Neybergal / Associated Press

Love is an intriguing prospect, but Bleacher Report Analyzer Matt Miller he says The 21-year-old Utah product “may be the best defender in the class or a backup for the passenger.” He is quite far from the state of “certain thing” and will probably throw himself at best.

Packers could have other shots of the defender’s prospects with similar characteristics and similar potential career trajectories in future drafts. Instead, they ignored key areas of need before the critical season, with Rodgers ‘window likely to close, and mortgaged their future for a wild card development project that is now inevitably seen as Rodgers’ successor.

Their words are good, but their actions remain deafening.

Brad Gagnon covers the 2012 NFL report for Bleacher. Follow him on Twitter: @Brad_Gagnon.

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