Aaron Rodgers says he was merely speaking honestly about his future with the Green Bay Packers because he knows he is not entirely in control of his own fate.
Rodgers’ comments after the Packers’ loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC Championship Game on Sunday seemed to suggest he could be moving on in his NFL career sooner than later.
The 49ers were immediately seen as a team that would have interest in pursuing one of the great quarterbacks in NFL history, who also happens to be a Chico native.
But Rodgers, appearing Tuesday on The Pat McAfee Show, put to rest some of the speculation that he could force his way out of Green Bay and move on to another team this offseason.
“Obviously, after the season that I had, and potentially winning MVP and we obviously made another good run, I don’t think there’s any reason I wouldn’t be back,” Rodgers said. “But, look, there are not many absolutes in this business.
"So to make an absolute statement about something that is not an absolute, I didn’t do it, and I guess that’s why everyone went kind of nuts.”
Rodgers is the runaway favorite to win NFL MVP after throwing a league-high 48 touchdowns and just five interceptions to lead the Packers to a 13-3 regular-season record. He led the NFL in completion percentage (70.7) and passer rating (121.5).
Rodgers said he was only speaking the truth about the unknowns that every NFL player faces going from one season to the next -- and, especially, in an offseason when the salary cap will be dropping for the first time in league history.
He said the pain from losing for a second year in a row in the NFC Championship Game was still raw when he made his comments to the media.
“I’m 15 minutes from crying in the locker room with some of my teammates,” Rodgers said. “I come and sit down to do an interview, and I give real answers. To me, the reality is my future is not in my hands.
"That’s really the case for all of us.”
The Packers last year traded up in the first round to draft quarterback Jordan Love. At some point during Love’s remaining three seasons under contract, the Packers might want to move him into a starting role. Rodgers recognizes that possibility was obvious from the moment Love joined the Packers.
“There are times when you let your mind go to, maybe, I’m going to be a Packer for life -- I’m going to be like a Tim Duncan or (Derek) Jeter or Kobe (Bryant) and play with one team my entire career," Rodgers said. "Naturally, you dream about that. That’s a dream scenario.
“When they drafted Jordan, It was more of a reality kicking in. That’s never the case. There are no absolutes in this business.”