After announcing his intention to play for the Jets in 2023 a month ago, the legendary quarterback Aaron Rodgers has been traded to New York. The blockbuster trade was agreed upon on Monday, and now that negotiations are complete, we can begin to examine the ripple effects of this move, which will not only impact the Packers and Jets but other teams as well.
One of the most pressing questions regarding this trade is who will benefit the most from it. As we examine the trade, we can see immediate winners and losers. Let’s take a look.
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Winner: Aaron Rodgers
Rodgers got what he wished for. He identified the Jets as his preferred next and likely final home, and that’s where he’s headed. Not only that but he will now be supported by a more well-rounded team than he had with the Packers in 2022. The Big Apple spotlight is just a bonus.
Loser: Dolphins and Patriots
Miami and New England have struggled to stay above .500 while fighting for second place in the AFC East. With Rodgers’ arrival, the Jets should be the new clear favorites to challenge for the division title.
Winner: Jordan Love
After three years of watching and learning, Love, the Packers’ surprise succession plan for Rodgers, is finally getting his chance. He’s primed for a solid debut as QB1 in Green Bay, where he’ll have a full offseason as Matt LaFleur’s man and improved weaponry now that the Packers have the No. 13 overall pick and an extra second-rounder in the draft, thanks to A-Rod’s trade.
Loser: Zach Wilson
The BYU product is being refastened to the bench for a 39-year-old replacement after two seasons and 22 injury- and turnover-riddled starts. His teammates all but celebrated his demotion in 2022, and now Rodgers is guaranteed his old starting job for as long as he’s in town.
Winner: All the Jets’ skill players
The young receiver Garrett Wilson is the most likely beneficiary. He’s got the route-running prowess to quickly become a Rodgers favorite and top 1,000 yards once again. But everyone else, from Breece Hall to ex-Packers starter Allen Lazard to speedy newcomer Mecole Hardman, should be primed for better production now that the QB position is so much better off.
Loser: Joe Douglas’ reputation as a negotiator
Douglas probably forfeited a bit too much, essentially a first- and second-rounder, as well as a move up in this year’s first round, for a short-term solution. This is a tough one, as there’s really no such thing as too big a price to pay for a premium QB. Still, barring a Super Bowl title with Rodgers as his QB, Douglas may have given up too much.
Winner: Jets fans
Rodgers’ arrival grants meaning to a franchise that has floundered for so long, especially at such an important position. It really is akin to Brady’s move to the Bucs, when a struggling team pushed in all the chips for an aging, albeit legendary, signal-caller in hopes of igniting a long-awaited playoff push.