The Green Bay Packers and New York Jets have yet to finalize the trade involving Aaron Rodgers. Trade talks have been going on for weeks now and both fanbases are eager to see the deal get done. One aspect of this that is lost on many, however, is the effect that the ongoing talks have on the Packers players who are close to Rodgers. On Tuesday morning, an episode of “Bussin’ with the Boys” aired on YouTube in which David Bakhtiari, one of Rodgers’ best friends on the team, was asked about the trade situation and what his thoughts on it were.
Is There a Scenario Where the Green Bay Packers Keep Aaron Rodgers?
The entire interview with Bakhtiari lasts for over two hours. During that time, he discusses many things regarding life outside of football, Aaron Rodgers, and his own future with the Packers. When asked about Rodgers and the trade talks that have been dragging on for weeks, Bakhtiari offered a mind-blowing scenario in which Green Bay would actually keep the future Hall of Fame quarterback:
“Or, option three, and again I’m not being a homer, the Packers are rebuilding whether you think so or not. Could they be good? I don’t know. Could they be bad? Probably through betting, more people are going to think they will be bad. I think that’s fair to say. They could always say, ‘Well, we’re going to suck anyways, and we’re not going to get anyone, so we’ll eat it [Aaron Rodgers’ salary]. If we’re going to do it, it’s going to be on our terms. If not, well we weren’t going to be a Super Bowl contender anyways.”
In this situation, the Packers would be so disenchanted with whatever trade offers they are getting from the Jets that they would keep Rodgers, not play him, and just pay his 2023 salary. Bakhtiari does note, however, that he does not believe that this will happen. At the beginning of his answer, he said that Rodgers “is a New York Jet” now, so he does believe that a trade will get done.
It is interesting, and perhaps concerning to fans, that Bakhtiari consistently referred to the Packers as “they” and not “we.” Perhaps we are reading too much into his phrasing, but his tone regarding the organization is far different from that of Aaron Jones’ from earlier this morning as well.
In a recent article posted by The Athletic, Matt Schneidman states that 2023 could very well be Bakhtiari’s last season in Green Bay. He sites the five-time Pro Bowler’s $21.5 million cap hit in 2024 as a reason for why the Packers might choose to cut ties with Bakhtiari. One may assume that whether or not Bakhtiari can stay healthy in 2023 will also play a part in their decision.
This all being said, football, for better or worse, is a business, and Bakhtiari approached the interview like it was a business, just as the Packers front office does. He is going to be protecting Jordan Love’s blindside this year, thus filling one of the most important roles on the team. Let’s enjoy him while he is still here.