You may not be aware of this, but the Quarterback position of the Green Bay Packers has been a huge topic lately. I know, I’m as shocked as you are. Okay, jokes aside, it’s true, the Titletown faithful are still in the dark over who will be their starting Quarterback to kick off the 2023 season. What we do know, is that it will likely either be Aaron Rodgers, or Jordan Love. Despite this knowledge, I believe the Packers should still look to draft a Quarterback in the upcoming NFL Draft.
What is up for debate though, is when they should pick one. This is completely dependent on the outcome of the Rodgers saga. What happens if Aaron Rodgers leaves the Packers and Jordan Love takes over? What happens if Aaron Rodgers stays, and Jordan Love decides he wants out? And what happens if they both stay? The strategy for each scenario could vary.
Aaron Rodgers Stays, and so does Jordan Love
Aaron Rodgers finally delivers an answer and says he wants to play. Not only that, but the Packers oblige and keep him as their starting QB for 2023. Unfortunately, for Jordan Love, this means another year at the kiddie table.
If both Quarterbacks return, you have to believe this is the last year they’re on the same team. Either Rodgers is gone post-2023 or Love is gone. There’s just no way if they keep Rodgers for 2024, Love sits a fifth year.
This kind of puts the Packers in a purgatory for a third Quarterback though. Which I think could give them some leeway to grab someone like Stetson Bennett in the late rounds.
Bennett is considered to be a wild card headed into the draft. He’s a good player, an outstanding leader, but he’s 25 years old and will be 26 come October. Teams want a Franchise QB who could be their guy for 10-15 years. Bennett could be approaching retirement age in only year 6 or 7. So this makes drafting Bennett tricky.
For the Packers however, it could be perfect in the above situation. They take a minimal risk on a QB that could have boom potential. Who knows, if Bennett impresses it could give the Packers a decent backup to Rodgers or Love post-2023. Or even trade-bait to a QB needy team. You never know.
Aaron Rodgers Retires or is Traded, Jordan Love takes over
The more I read reactions, the more it seems like Packer fans are ready to move on from Aaron Rodgers. Of course, the ideal, less messy situation is for Rodgers to call it a career. We can have a nice little retirement ceremony for number 12, and he can graciously pass the torch to Jordan Love. Packer nation moves on without drama.
Or Aaron Rodgers decides to continue but the team decides it’s time to move on and ships off Aaron Rodgers to the Raiders or the Jets to wind out his time. Unless Rodgers claims this is what he wants or is fine with, boy would that be messy for the fanbase. But in all honesty, I like the idea of getting something for Rodgers instead of just losing him all together.
If this is what happens, I think the Packers should move to draft a Day 2 or early Day 3 Quarterback.
Day 2 or 3 candidate
There are two candidates I might have for this situation. The first one, is Jaren Hall. Hall is a dual threat QB who for the time being, is a bit streaky. He has a good arm, moves through his progressions fairly well, and is very capable of picking up yards on the ground. Hall could serve as a decent backup to Jordan Love perhaps with a cheap veteran next to him in year 1. He’ll take a year or so to really show if he’s capable or not, but could serve as a good backup to Love in the future.
My second is Malik Cunningham. Cunningham is considered to be a backup to starter caliber prospect. He’s drawn comparisons to the Ravens’ Tyler Huntley for his possible ability to come in and win games for a team from a backup role if needed. This could be a perfect pick in the 3rd or 4th round as Jordan Love insurance just in case Love doesn’t quite work out.
Rodgers stays, Love demands a trade
I know many have said the Packers have all the leverage in this situation to deny Jordan Love a trade if Aaron Rodgers stays. But I’ve argued that in this situation, they might as well just trade him. How do you build a team around a guy that wanted out of the organization? I just feel like they might as well oblige and see what they can get.
If this happens, the Packers need a backup QB. They also need a Quarterback of the future with Aaron Rodgers possibly looking at retirement in the next 1-2 years. If this happens, I’d honestly shoot for the moon. Use some of the draft capital you got from trading away Jordan Love, whatever it may be, and go get a top Quarterback.
The top prospects won’t be there. The Packers would have to pay a king’s ransom to move up for C.J. Stroud or Bryce Young, and I’m sure they’d rather keep that for now. However, it might not take a ton to move up for Will Levis or Anthony Richardson. Get that high prospect Quarterback while you can and let them watch Aaron Rodgers for 1-2 years and enjoy that luxury.
I think the most likely scenario is the mid-late round idea, but you never know, we could be surprised.
Greg Meinholz is a 24/7/365 Packers fan. When he’s not spending time with his family, he can be found meditating in his Packers shrine with a good beer. You can follow him on twitter at @gmeinholz.
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