Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers are set to enter uncharted waters this season. This will be their first in eight years without the reliable Davante Adams catching at least 100 passes for 1300 to 1500 yards and eight to 10 touchdowns guaranteed.
Adams was traded to the Las Vegas Raiders in March, as he grew tired of quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ offseason act of holding the franchise hostage with hints of retirement.
So now Rodgers is stuck with a new cast of pass catchers, and none are in the same stratosphere as Adams, who’s arguably the best receiver in the NFL.
— Around The NFL (@AroundTheNFL) April 29, 2022
Following Wednesday’s joint practice against the Saints, Rodgers gave a not so glowing report of how the young receivers were performing. “The young guys, especially the young ones,” he said, “we’ve got to be way more consistent. A lot of drops, a lot of bad route decisions, running the wrong route. We’ve got to be better in that area.”
"We're gonna need those guys."
— Green Bay Packers (@packers) August 17, 2022
What Rodgers is saying probably has plenty of validity, but the way he did it didn’t sit well with FS1 analyst and Pro Football Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe. The legendary tight end took Rodgers to task for his calling out the receivers in the media, believing it should’ve been handled behind closed doors. During Thursday’s episode of “Undisputed” on FS1, the loquacious Sharpe had a lot to say about Rodgers.
Sharpe Calls Rodgers Out For How He Handled Struggling Receivers
“This is what rubs me the wrong way. Everything that he said to those reporters publicly, he could have called a group together. Guys, we’ve got to be better. In order for us to be the type of football teams that we want to be.
“ ‘We’re going to have to make the plays that we left out on the field today. We’ve got to better on our routes. We got to be better in our decision-making. We got to speed up the process. And when we have an opportunity to make plays, we’ve got to make the plays.’
“That’s all he had to do. Everything. I’m not saying what he said is wrong. I’m saying his delivery and how he delivered the message to them is wrong. Why couldn’t he say that behind closed doors?”
Rodgers is pleading with his young receivers to step up and make plays. The Packers have three veterans on the roster in Allan Lazard, Randall Cobb and free agent signee Sammy Watkins. But they have a lot of inexperience led by second-round pick Christian Watson from North Dakota State. But for some reason Rodgers thinks calling out the young guys in the media is going to help them. That strategy could backfire, and they could struggle even more with the added pressure.
PACKERS SIGN SAMMY WATKINS✅ pic.twitter.com/Z23kiEz4Wx
— IKE Packers Podcast (@IKE_Packers) April 14, 2022
This all could’ve been avoided if he weren’t toying with retirement every offseason, holding the team hostage — only to return once his demands are met.
Packers Will Lean Heavily On Defense And Running Game
With the passing game a work in progress, the Packers will more than likely lean heavily on their stout defense and elite running game. Those two components have always taken a back seat in Green Bay ad Rodgers has routinely thrown it around the yard to Adams and others. This year’s crop of maybes should be enough to still win their division and make the playoffs, but to win the postseason they’re going to need a competent passing attack.
And we know if things are not sorted out soon, we’ll continue to hear Rodgers complain and show his displeasure with a situation he helped create.