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Aaron Rodgers has advice for Zach Wilson amid Jets trade rumors

Aaron Rodgers has some advice for Zach Wilson after the second-year quarterback was benched en route to the Jets missing the playoffs.

During his weekly appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” on Tuesday, the Packers quarterback — who’s been linked to the Jets amid trade rumors — was asked about his relationship with Wilson.

“I met him before the draft and then they came and practiced against us in the preseason, some of those inner-squad practices. … I think he’s super talented,” Rodgers said, referring to the Packers-Jets joint practices in Green Bay in August 2021. “I think a little humility is good for all of us at various times in our careers. I think the first year, they literally had no players. They came to play us and I was like, the defense can play, and the offense needs some players.

“For him it’s just gonna be leaning into humility and consistently working on the fundamentals. … I hope that whoever they decide to go with at coordinator can come in and work with him and break down a lot of the fundamentals for him and get him playing on time, because I think he’s talented enough to have a long career in the league.”

Rodgers’ comments came after ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler said Sunday on “SportsCenter” that the Jets are expected to “scour the earth” for a potential new quarterback in addition to Wilson.

The Jets also spoke with former Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett on Wednesday after parting ways with their offensive coordinator, Matt LaFleur. Hackett was the offensive coordinator for the Packers from 2019-21, before becoming the head coach in Denver this year.

This marks the third straight offseason in which Rodgers’ playing future is unclear.

Rodgers, 39, played coy about his future with the Packers, which included a report by ESPN’s Adam Schefter that an offseason trade is a “very real scenario” for both sides. The quarterback added that he’s never been in a position in his career where he’s thought about “being in another uniform” with another team.

Zach Wilson and Aaron Rodgers meet on the field after the Jets’ win over the Packers on Oct. 16, 2022.
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Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers against the Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field on Jan. 8, 2023 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers against the Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field on Jan. 8, 2023 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
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“All the trade stuff is conjecture until I decide what I want to do moving forward for myself,” Rodgers said on the show, adding that he’s taking time to decompress while he contemplates his future.

“Any time you make a decision you have to try and take the emotion out of it and there is emotion with the end of the season, the end of runs with certain teams and specific teammates that might be moving on and obviously the way the season ends.”

Rodgers’ 18th season with the Packers ended in a 20-16 loss to the Lions in Week 18, which eliminated Green Bay from playoff contention.

Rodgers said he’s “open to all honest and direct conversations” with the Packers about his future. The quarterback explained that his decision on how he will move forward will come down to.

“That’s number one — if I want to play. Number two, it’s got to be mutual on both sides,” Rodgers said. “What does a team look like with me? What are the proposed direction of players they want to bring in and where I fit in and the prospects moving forward? You want to be part of team that’s going to win a championship… I don’t need all my guys to be there… It’s kind of the feel of the team.”

Meanwhile, off the field, Rodgers said he’s been taking time to decompress from the grind of his 18th season.

“I’ve been doing a whole lot of nothing,” Rodgers said. “… I’ve been enjoying myself seeing a few friends, just relaxing. … I needed some time to kind of decompress and relax a little bit. I’m going to play in the Pebble Beach Pro-Am. I need a little competition in my life, so I’m excited about that.”

Rogers has $110 million left on his contract extension that he signed with Green Bay last spring.

The reigning two-time MVP threw for 3,695 yards, 26 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 2022, finishing the season with an 8-9 record.

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