It is no secret that the Green Bay Packers made Jordan Love available on the trading block in the days leading up to the 2022 NFL Draft. After trading up to draft Love in 2020, the Packers have seen Aaron Rodgers win two-straight NFL MVP Awards. He also signed a three-year $150 million extension. Now, the team is faced with a difficult decision. Do they admit they were wrong to draft Love and trade him? Or do they pick up his fifth year option? While neither option needs to be decided now, one could argue that if the Packers plan to trade Love, they should do so sooner rather than later. Bleacher Report’s Alex Kay, for instance, made the argument that the Packers should trade Love this preseason while his value is still high.
Alex Kay Argues the Packers Could Trade Jordan Love for an Immediate Contributor
In an article published on Monday, Alex Kay detailed one player on each team that could (or should) be traded during the preseason. Perhaps unsurprisingly, he identified Jordan Love as the player the Packers should try to trade. In his article, Kay wrote:
“Although Rodgers could retire before his current contract expires, Love likely wants to get a real opportunity to start soon and the Packers aren’t going to want to pay big bucks for a backup. Dealing the 23-year-old while his value is still high is looking like the best option for each party.
Putting Love on the block and asking for a ready-to-go contributor in exchange for the young signal-caller would best benefit Green Bay during the few years remaining in this Super Bowl window. The team only seems to have a few years tops before Rodgers calls it a career, making draft capital less important right now.”
Max Dible of Heavy on Packers suggested that the Cleveland Browns would be an ideal trade candidate for the Green Bay Packers in any Jordan Love trade. It is possible Deshaun Watson will be suspended for a long period of time. Because of this, he argues that the Browns could be interested in the former first round pick.
Evaluating the Idea of a Potential Jordan Love Trade
It goes without saying that, at least among many fans, the Packers trading up for Jordan Love is among one of the most unpopular moves in recent memory. Let us take a moment, though, to remember one thing: Jordan Love did not ask the Packers to trade up for him. Throughout his time in Green Bay, he has been a true professional.
That being said, it does make some sense for the Packers to consider trading Love. A fifth year option will cost the team $20 million against the 2024 salary cap. If Aaron Rodgers does not retire, Love would be a very expensive backup. Additionally, there is no guarantee he would even sign with the Packers afterwards.
Criticism of the Jordan Love Trade Proposal
There are two issues, though, with the trade notions above. The first is that the Packers do not have another quarterback that they view as a viable backup. Danny Etling did play very well against San Francisco. He completed six of eight passes for 123 yards and a touchdown. However, it should be noted that he was playing against fringe roster players. Kurt Benkert was signed to a futures deal earlier this year, but was released this summer.
Of course, one would hope that a backup quarterback will not be needed. The goal, as it is every season, is for Aaron Rodgers to remain healthy all year. Injuries happen, though. Even though Jordan Love has struggled, he has also shown improvement. One cannot say the Packers would be better off with Danny Etling than Jordan Love if Rodgers were to go down with an injury. To be sure, Love is their best option as a backup quarterback.
The second issue with the Jordan Love trade proposal is the idea that the Packers would trade him for a wide receiver. In his article, Kay wrote,
“Landing an impact wideout to help make up for the loss of Davante Adams would be ideal, given the Packers failed to land any truly impressive talents at the position in free agency.”
I am not sure why the national media believes the Packers are still in the market for a wide receiver. As it stands, the Packers have six wide receivers considered locks for the roster. These are: Allen Lazard, Randall Cobb, Amari Rodgers, Sammy Watkins, Romeo Doubs, and Christian Watson. In addition to these, they have Samori Toure, Juwann Winfree, and Danny Davis, all of whom showed out against the 49ers. While the Packers may make a move for an Odell Beckham Jr. after the season starts and injuries have taken their toll, the notion of trading for a wide receiver now makes very little sense.
As mentioned, the notion of trading Jordan Love does make some sense when the high price of his fifth year option is taken into consideration. With Aaron Rodgers under contract until 2024-2026 (depending on if he retires), Love’s future in Green Bay is far from certain. However, trading him with the current roster makeup does not make the most sense. Furthermore, the notion that they should trade him for a wide receiver should not be considered any longer. They have good depth at that position.