Aaron Rodgers-to-49ers rumor was repeated by WFAN’s Tiki Barber. Should New York Jets be worried?
After New York Jets owner Woody Johnson sold his soul for Aaron Rodgers, it would be his worst nightmare to see the deal fall through.
WFAN’s Tiki Barber thinks that it very well could happen.
On Wednesday’s ‘Tiki and Tierney’ show, Tiki expressed the possibility that the 49ers could swoop in and grab Rodgers. He repeated the rumor first floated by Craig Carton a few weeks ago.
What was Tiki relying on, though? Does he have insider information? Sources around the league?
Apparently not. As Tiki said himself, he was “extrapolating.” Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that the 49ers have been fielding calls for Trey Lance—but not initiating them. Teams are aware that San Francisco likely plans to roll with Brock Purdy, making Lance expendable.
Tiki claims that since Purdy had UCL surgery in March, he may not be able to play the whole season. Purdy stated that he’s not sure if he will play in 2023. There is no conceivable way that the 49ers could go with Sam Darnold as the starter, in his opinion. Therefore, who’s a logical alternative?
Well, Tiki immediately jumped to Rodgers. As he said, “If the 49ers trade Trey Lance… and Brock Purdy isn’t available to play this year, Sam Darnold is not… starting for the 49ers. They’re okay with mortgaging their future… this team will go get Aaron Rodgers if he’s available, and the Jets will be stuck sitting out in the cold.”
The logic here is that San Francisco has multiple third-round compensatory picks. This would allow them to offer those picks along with a first-rounder next season and acquire Rodgers.
This would be every Jets fan’s worst nightmare. But is there any validity to it?
This rumor is still just a rumor at this point.
Lance is still on the 49ers, and they are not the ones doing the shopping. It doesn’t sound like San Francisco is eagerly seeking to part with Lance. They did, after all, give up a haul to draft him in 2021, and they haven’t actually seen much from him. Unlike Zach Wilson with the Jets, Lance’s potential is still there.
Now, it is possible that Rodgers would jump at the opportunity to play for the 49ers. He is a California kid and famously really wanted to play for his hometown team when they passed over him in the draft. They also have a Super Bowl-ready roster and ample weapons for him.
However, there remains the little detail that Rodgers said not too long ago, “I’m not going to San Francisco.”
Aaron Rodgers throws cold water on rumors he’s coming to the Bay
“I’m not going to San Fran.”
🎥 @GolfonCBS pic.twitter.com/r5mHr4EqWx
— KNBR (@KNBR) February 2, 2023
There is also the question of whether Green Bay would want to trade Rodgers within the conference. The assumption is that they would overlook it if they received the compensation they wanted.
There do not appear to be actual reports that the 49ers have inquired about Rodgers this offseason.
One of the biggest obstacles to such a trade would be the 49ers’ cap situation. San Francisco has $2.94 million in cap space, per Over the Cap, with $1.89 million in effective cap space. They also have only $19 million in space for 2024, while Rodgers could potentially cost over $43 million against their cap if he retires or $32.5 million if he plays. They can likely find a way to clear the cap space, but it would put them in a precarious situation going forward.
Could It Happen?
The Jets do need to keep in mind that this is not completely impossible. The 49ers do have the picks, and they could have the need. John Lynch has shown that he is unafraid to be aggressive with trading draft picks for a quarterback.
That being said, there do not seem to be any credible reports making this link. It’s all speculation.
In fact, this whole rumor is based largely on the fact that the 49ers have been fielding calls about Lance because Purdy is the QB of the future. But if Purdy’s health is an unknown, are the 49ers actually going to pull the trigger on a Lance trade?
For now, this seems far more likely to be Packers propaganda to gain leverage than an actual possibility.
Still, as long as Rodgers is not in Green and White, expect these rumors to keep on floating. Preying on the anxieties of Jets fans is one of the media’s favorite pastimes.
First, the Packers are not looking to trade Aaron Rodgers to an NFC team that is ready to make a Super Bowl run in 2023.
A team who has also knocked them out of the play-offs four times in the past decade, including the 2020 championship game, and 2022 divisional round game last year.
Second, the 49ers GM and HC have both said that they favor a cheap QB room of Lance, Purdy, and Darnold due to the fact that they just gave 84M to DL Javon Hargrave, they still need to pay Nick Bosa, and they have seven other players on the roster earning between 13M-23M.
The 49ers only have $3,093,043 million in cap space currently, which gives them little space to reasonably carry Rodgers salary without significant financial gymnastics.
Third, The 49ers do not have a 1st or 2nd round pick in the 2023 draft.
So, what can they give that would help the packers now, and I do not think the 49ers could afford to give up their 1st round pick in 2024, or their 2nd for that matter.
Now, some have said that maybe the 49ers could trade a player, but I also do not think the 49ers are looking to weaken a positional group for the opportunity to gain a 4th QB on their roster, who is 40.
I am trying to present facts that form my opinions, and these facts can not be overlooked.
I’m even not factoring in that Rodgers may possibly hold a grudge over the 49ers for not drafting him, and if that may or may not still factor in his thinking, and whether he would sign off on the trade
Does anyone think the 49ers are an option?
About intra-conference and the 49ers having beaten them: you’d think that would be the case, but Green Bay could cut off their nose to spite their face, from the way their front office has been acting.
Regarding what SF’s front office said, that’s one of the reasons this is not likely. But if SF is all-in on 2023, they could conceivably try to make that fit. They can perform the necessary cap gymnastics. More salient is their limited 2024 cap space; presumably, that’s when Bosa’s extension will hit, further narrowing their only $19 million in 2024 space.
The 49ers can give multiple third-rounders this year and a first-rounder next year. I believe they have three third-round comp picks. They can get to the equivalent of one second-round pick, which is what the Jets would give in 2023.
The 49ers are not the most credible option, but they could do it. It’s not out of the realm of possibility. NFL teams do things that might hamstring their future on a regular basis. The 49ers are likely tired of being one step behind.
That was a great rebuttal, and you’re right that teams have done things that make you go hmmmm….
Let’s hope you’re not right.
Enjoy your day!
This article makes no sense. What picks do SF have? It looks to me that they don’t have any first or second round picks this year.
They have three third-round comp picks this year. Giving two of them would easily match the Jets’ 42nd or 43rd pick.
You are correct in your assumption. The news media loves to screw around with Jets fans.
That was stated as a fact, not an assumption.