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Report: Aaron Rodgers wants the Packers to fire G.M. Brian Gutekunst

Mike Florio and Chris Simms break down the strategy behind how Aaron Rodgers expressed wanting out of Green Bay and and why the Packers didn’t want this news to break on the first day of the 2021 NFL Draft.

So why is quarterback Aaron Rodgers upset with the Packers? He’s specifically disenchanted with one person.

According to Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports, Rodgers won’t return to the Packers as long as Brian Gutekunst serves as the team’s General Manager. Rodgers is willing to consider “hardline options” to get what he wants, from skipping the entire offseason to holding out of training camp, to possibly retiring.

Robinson reports, citing an unnamed source in Rodgers’ camp, that a reconciliation may not be possible if Gutekunst continues to be the G.M. Also, Robinson reports that team CEO Mark Murphy is aware of Rodgers’ position on Gutekunst.

“The ball is in Mark’s court,” the unnamed source told Robinson.

Things fell apart, not surprisingly, when Gutekunst traded up to select quarterback Jordan Love in 2020, without first telling Rodgers. According to Robinson, Rodgers believed that the Packers intended to supplant him with Love after the 2020 season.

Robinson reports that Rodgers’ camp has proposed a contract that would tie the two sides together for the next two seasons, and that the Packers have resisted.

The options moving forward are simple. First, the Packers can trade Rodgers. Second, they can fire Gutekunst. (That definitely shouldn’t happen, and if Rodgers is truly pushing for that, he’s way out of line.) Third, they can hold firm, forcing Rodgers to do something more than make vague, passive-aggressive comments, bristle when reporters notice and interpret his words, and then act like everything is fine even though there should be no doubt at this point that it isn’t. (They also could, in theory, give him the contract he wants. It seems too late for that, however.)

Ultimately, Rodgers treads lightly because (in my opinion) he desperately doesn’t want to be viewed as a pariah by Packers fans. As the pot quickly has gone from simmer to boiled over, some Packers fans already are turning on him -- blaming him and not the team for the current situation.