1. Allowing Aaron Rodgers situation to reach this point
Of course, the number one concern entering the season is whether Aaron Rodgers will play a single snap. The blame doesn’t fall entirely on the Packers for this situation, but there’s no doubt they could’ve handled it better along the way.
Back in February, I wrote that the Packers needed to “commit to Rodgers in the short term and do whatever it takes to strengthen the roster around him”. Funnily enough, that didn’t include Mark Murphy publicly calling him a “complicated fella”. Nice one, Mark.
But as they’ve done too often recently, they didn’t go all-in. They wanted to go after another Super Bowl in the short term while also not risking the long-term future when he’s gone.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported in April that “Rodgers refused a restructure” as he wanted an extension. When the Packers did offer an extension, there was no deal.
Had the Packers shown early on that, after he won his third MVP award, that they were all-in with Rodgers moving forward, maybe this problem would’ve been resolved. What if they had gone to Rodgers with a new contract extension offer right away and promised to go all-in for the 2021 season?
I don’t know whether that would’ve prevented the current situation. Only Rodgers knows that.
What we do know is that this situation is a mess, and the Packers deserve at least a big chunk of the blame for that.