NFL

Aaron Rodgers trade standoff: Why Jets have leverage over the Packers, according to former NFL team president

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It’s been over a week since Aaron Rodgers said that he wanted to play for the New York Jets, but despite those comments, nothing has happened on the trade front yet 

With the Jets and Packers seemingly at a stalemate in trade talks, there’s been a lot of debate about which team has more leverage in this situation. On one hand, the Packers are in no rush to get a deal done, which means they can hold on to Rodgers until the Jets meet their asking price. However, Joe Banner says it’s actually the Jets who have the leverage. 

The former Eagles president explained why in a recent interview with the New York Post. According to Banner, the Jets’ leverage comes from being the only suitor for Rodgers. 

“The Packers, by waiting, risk that, for some reason, the Jets would not be interested, and then they have no one [to trade with], which really ruins their team for two, probably three years,” Banner said. 

If the Jets make it seem like they might back out of the trade or if the Jets start looking at other options at quarterback, that could put the Packers in a corner. 

“If I were the Jets, I’d bring Lamar Jackson in for a visit even if I wasn’t interested,” Banner said. “Then, the Packers are saying, ‘Holy [bleep], they have an alternative and we don’t. We better close the deal.'”

Right now, the Jets have made it pretty clear that they’re all in on Rodgers, but if the Packers continue to play hardball, then there’s at least a small chance that they could change their mind or at least make the Packers think they’ve changed their mind. 

“Believing the Jets will do something that will reflect impatience is not leverage,” Banner said. “That’s just hoping they’re stupid. Leverage is putting the Packers in a position where they could lose the only interested team, which creates a complete disaster for them.”

Even if the Packers aren’t in any rush to get a deal done, that shouldn’t impact the Jets plans, because they can also play the waiting game. 

“For me, the Jets can wait without any risk or consequence,” Banner said. 

The Jets could theoretically wait until the start of training camp before things would start to get dicey for them. 

If you’re wondering why a trade hasn’t happened yet, Rodgers says it’s because the Packers’ asking price is too high. According to multiple reports, the Packers are looking for at least a first-round pick. 

Banner spent 20 years working in an NFL front office and if he ran the Jets, he says there’s no way he’d surrender a first-round pick for Rodgers. 

“If I’m the Jets, I’m getting him for as little as I can, and I am absolutely not putting a one at risk, no matter what,” Banner said. “Why put a one on the table when all you’re gaining is getting him a little bit sooner maybe? The Packers have to cave at some point.”

Although Banner thinks the Packers will eventually cave because the Jets have all the leverage, not everyone feels that way. In a piece for Sports Illustrated, former Packers executive Andrew Brandt wrote that Green Bay has all the leverage in the deal. 

Both teams almost certainly feel like they have the upper hand in negotiations for the QB, which is likely why we haven’t seen a trade happen yet. That’s also why we might not see a trade happen until closer to the draft. Basically, don’t hold your breath waiting for a trade because it could be weeks and no one can hold their breath that long.