It’s hard to steal the thunder from the NFL Draft, but that’s exactly what Aaron Rodgers has done over the past weekend after news leaked he does not want to return to the Packers.
Speculation around Rodgers’ status with Green Bay has flown around like a swarm of locusts over the past several days, reaching a fever pitch when NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that the star quarterback is “seriously considering retiring.” However, his former Packers teammate AJ Hawk shot that down
“My opinion would be that there is a zero percent chance Aaron retires,” Hawk said on “The Pat McAfee Show” Monday. “If you go back and listen to him speak on the competitive nature of what football is and what it brings to him, do you really think that dude is going to walk away from the game?”
“When I heard that floated out there, I was like, that was the dumbest thing I ever heard. I guarantee you he’s not retiring.”
Hawk spent the weekend with Rodgers at the Kentucky Derby, where the two were photographed together with Rodgers’ fiancée Shailene Woodley, among others. While Hawk maintained that it was a social trip and he wasn’t speaking for Rodgers, he did say he got a sense of what the quarterback was thinking during the trip.
One thing he felt willing to share was his doubt that Rodgers actually gave the team an ultimatum that he would only return if GM Brian Gutekunst was let go, as has been reported.
“That’s garbage too, I think,” Hawk said. “I definitely do not think that Aaron is out there trying to say, fire Gute. Like I said, I’m not speaking for him, I’m just telling you what my feelings are from being around him.
“I think the front office probably knows, this isn’t something that just crept up on us and all of a sudden we have issues. I think it’s something they know, wow, how did we ever get this far?”
Hawk maintained he has not had any conversations with anyone in Green Bay and is just speculating. But seeing as he is the last person to hang out with Rodgers, it’s safe to guess he has some idea of the QB’s mindset.
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