On March 15, Aaron Rodgers signed a $150 million contract that will keep him in Green Bay for the next three seasons. With a few more roster moves, the Packers will be under the $208.2 million salary cap for the 2022 NFL season. However, with an active quarterback trade market and a weak draft class at the position, many fans are left wondering what the Packers should do with 2020 first-round draft pick Jordan Love.
On the surface, the Packers front office appears to be making a complete 180 in their support of Love. Why continue to develop an unproven talent when Rodgers, having won back-to-back MVP awards, wants to “run it back?” By extending Rodgers, the Packers have extended the amount of time Love will be spending on the bench.
Even with Russell Wilson getting traded to the Denver Broncos and Carson Wentz to the Washington Commanders, there are plenty of teams looking for their next franchise quarterback. For that reason, a quarterback-needy team may consider taking a chance on Love, who has already been in the league for two years.
Dealing Love is hardly a no-brainer, though. Rodgers will be 38 years old for most of the 2022 season and suffered major collarbone injuries in 2013 and 2017. In Rodgers’ absence, the Packers suffered from backup quarterback play which ranged from abysmal to mediocre. Green Bay made the playoffs in 2013, but only thanks to a Week 17 return by Rodgers.
It should also be noted that Rodgers developed behind Brett Favre for three years, compared to Love’s two thus far, before taking the reins. Love still has two years left on his four-year rookie contract with a potential fifth-year option. He has only a $3.38 million cap hit — a modest number for a backup quarterback — in 2022.
Ultimately, due to Love’s potential and his minimal salary cap impact, the Packers should give him another year as Rodgers’ understudy. If Rodgers becomes unavailable for any reason, Love can start in his place and put his first-round talent on display.