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Brian Gutekunst: Aaron Rodgers is certainly going to take some time and I think that’s fair

As the Packers prepare for another offseason of Aaron Rodgers uncertainty, Florio and Simms both think the team can't afford a repeat of last year when the QB's offseason absence set the offense back.

Aaron Rodgers did not exactly look or sound like a player intending to suit up again for another season when he held his postgame press conference following last Sunday’s loss to the Lions.

But the Packers don’t seem like they’ll be pushing him out the door.

In his Friday press conference, Green Bay General Manager Brian Gutekunst said he wants all the guys back, including Rodgers. But the Packers are going to give the quarterback the space he needs to decide whether or not he’d like to keep playing.

He’s certainly going to take some time. I think that’s fair,” Gutekunst said. “And as we work through this, I think as he takes his time, makes his decision just on his playing career in general, then we’ll get together and move forward that way.

“We made a really big commitment to him last offseason. So I think as we did that, it wasn’t certainly for just this year. So we’ll — like I said, he’s going to take his time and the communication will be pretty constant as we move forward.”

Gutekunst was asked why the Packers would want Rodgers back, given that his play declined in 2022 and the quarterback will be 40 next December.

“Well certainly this year, I think he was dealing with some moving pieces, some injuries — things like that,” Gutekunst said. “It wasn’t a great year offensively for us as a whole. But I mean, you guys saw, he can still play at a very high level. Really liked the way he led us. So, I think as we move forward over the next month or so, we’ll start putting these things together and see how that transpires.”

Rodgers has said that continuing to play for the Packers won’t be entirely up to him. But Gutekunst noted he hasn’t given Rodgers any indication that the franchise doesn’t want him back, though the G.M. admitted the middle of the season was tough on everybody.

“We’ve had good conversations, like we always do,” Gutekunst said. “Talked this week and it was really good conversations. I really respect the process he goes through after the season. He’s done this for a long time. What he goes through during the offseason to get prepared for a season is significant. And I understand the decision he has to make on whether he wants to go through that. So, I’ve always tried to give him that time. We talked about the season, what went right, what went wrong, what he liked, what he didn’t. But not a lot of future stuff.”

After winning his second MVP award in a row last year, Rodgers completed 64.6 percent of his passes for 3,695 yards with 26 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 2022. His passer rating fell from 111.9 to 91.1.