One of the most important lessons that one can learn when engaging with others is learning to pay attention carefully to what is said and how it’s said, and how specific the wording is. That comes in handy as it concerns the report from Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk that the Pittsburgh Steelers are trying to trade for quarterback Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers.
The morning after that report, we saw numerous members of the boys’ club media citing sources stating that the Packers have not engaged in trade talks with other teams for Rodgers. But as Florio explains, that’s only telling half the truth.
“The Packers say they haven’t engaged in trade talks for Aaron Rodgers—they’re technically telling the truth, because they haven’t done it”, he said on 93.7 The Fan yesterday. “Rodgers’ people have done it, with the blessing of the Packers, to go out there and find the alternative destinations, with the advance approval of the Packers”.
Florio’s original report stated that Rodgers is deciding between four teams, including the Packers, along with the Tennessee Titans and the Denver Broncos, and of course the Steelers, the latter three requiring Green Bay to trade him.
“There’s an understanding in place, as I understand it, between Rodgers’ people and the Steelers and the Packers, with Rodgers’ people being the go-between”, he said. “They give the Packers plausible deniability, so they can say, ‘We haven’t engaged in trade talks with anyone’”.
In other words, according to his own information, Rodgers and his team have spoken to the Packers about what the parameters of a trade would be that they would agree to, and what teams they would agree to trade him—which likely excludes any NFC team. His representatives have discussed the parameters of trades with the Steelers, the Titans, and the Broncos that they understand the Packers would agree to.
“My understanding is that the parameters were made privy to Rodgers’ people, and they went out and got this ready to go, and it’s just a matter of him saying where he wants to go—that everything will fall into place once he says where he wants to go”, he added.
He also said that not only are there parameters of trades line up, so far outlines for new contracts that he would sign with his team depending upon his destination. That would include a new contract, of course, if he chooses to stay with the Packers.
Florio suggested, and I think he is right, that the Steelers would be the closest thing to the Packers from an organizational perspective, so if Rodgers is looking for a similar experience, yet a different one, Pittsburgh could be a logical choice.
Even among those who might accept the validity of Florio’s report, however, there is quite a bit of pushback about even wanting that to happen. Any trade for a quarterback of Rodgers’ stature, even at his age, would command a king’s ransom in terms of draft capital, and would immediately bloat the salary cap, even if they could manage it.