Packers must trade for one season WR or risk loss, Aaron Rodgers’ remaining career | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats & Rumors

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Aaron Rodgers’ time is on the decline. His powers are no longer at their peak.

Instead, a transfer of power happened in real time watching Sunday night football. The superhero qualities once displayed by the four-time NFL MVP had been bequeathed to a suitable successor in Josh Allen of the Buffalo Bills.

A bit like in the DC Films production black adam and the sequel to come Shazam!, the powers of the protagonists can be transferred to others, who then become the most powerful mortal in the world. The description is fitting for Allen’s current position in professional football.

The designation previously belonged to Rodgers. What everyone saw in the Green Bay Packers’ 27-17 loss at Highmark Stadium on Sunday is a once-elite quarterback in decline, unable to lead an offense without the tools to execute consistently at a level raised.

Change is needed, and it is needed quickly. The trade deadline happens to be Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET. Green Bay should be buyers despite their disappointing 3-5 record.

The Packers basically waved the white flag a few times in what became their fourth straight loss because the roster had multiple wide receiver injuries and an offensive line in a constant state of flux.

On the 3rd and 16th, with 1:06 left in the first half and two touchdowns, Rodgers handed the ball to running back Aaron Jones.

4-and-1 from Buffalo’s 26-yard line and down 17 points early in the fourth quarter, the 10-time Pro Bowl flagger gave Jones the ball again, despite concerns about the offensive interior.

ORCHARD PARK, NEW YORK – OCTOBER 30: Aaron Jones #33 of the Green Bay Packers rushes in during the second quarter against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium on October 30, 2022 in Orchard Park, New York.  (Photo by Timothy T. Ludwig/Getty Images)

Timothy T. Ludwig/Getty Images

“I was surprised. I was like, ‘Hey, you all have to start passing the ball, right?'” Bills edged out defender Von Miller said when asked about his team’s reaction to the Packers’ conservative approach.

To illustrate how little confidence the team has in its wide receivers, offensive line and Rodgers ability to make something out of thin air, the 38-year-old veteran attempted just 16 passes for 74 yards with 10 minutes left and still trailing by 17 points. Eventually, the offense fired a 37-yard touchdown pass to rookie Samori Toure in garbage time.

Toure, a seventh-round selection, and fourth-round rookie Romeo Doubs being the only two to make significant plays in the passing game cries out incompetence to properly build around the league’s highest-paid quarterback at 50 .3 million per year.

“No one will give us a chance to go to Buffalo on Sunday night football with a chance of exposure,” Rodgers told reporters Last week. “Shoot, maybe that’s the best thing for us.”

Rodgers hit the nail on the head, but not the way he expected.

The quarterback thought the contest could become a catalyst for a regular season revival. The opposite happened.

If those in the Green Bay locker room hadn’t already realized it, the Packers aren’t level with the Bills. Rodgers and Co. aren’t serious Super Bowl contenders with the current roster construction. Some late offensive moves don’t change that fact.

Green Bay needs to take an aggressive approach to fixing the list.

ORCHARD PARK, NEW YORK – OCTOBER 30: Christian Watson #9 of the Green Bay Packers receives attention after sustaining an injury during the first half against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium on October 30, 2022 in Orchard Park , New York.  (Photo by Timothy T. Ludwig/Getty Images)

Timothy T. Ludwig/Getty Images

Prior to Monday’s game, Randall Cobb (ankle) and Allen Lazard (shoulder) had already been ruled out with injuries. To make matters worse, second-round rookie Christian Watson suffered a concussion in the first trimester.

Those injuries still don’t excuse the fact that general manager Brian Gutekunst and his predecessor, Ted Thompson, have consistently failed to place top talent around Rodgers.

The running gag at this point is that Green Bay hasn’t selected a wide receiver in the first round since Javon Walker in 2002. To put that number in context, Watson hadn’t yet turned three when that happened.

There is very little time left to rectify this situation, especially after trading the game’s best wide receiver, Davante Adams, to the Las Vegas Raiders this past offseason.

Adams turned out to be an anomaly. The 53rd overall pick in the 2014 draft grew over time to eventually become Rodgers’ safety cover. He learned from veterans Jordy Nelson and Cobb. Recently, young options haven’t had the same luxury. And they disappointed.

“Guys who make too many mistakes shouldn’t play,” Rodgers said in his last appearance on the Pat McAfee Show (h/t The Athletic’s matt schneidman). “I need to start cutting some reps.”

So who are the Packers turning to for the help they desperately need? A few names should be in the mix.

“The Packers have had discussions about acquiring a receiver, sources say, but nothing has transpired yet,” the NFL Network reporting team noted. “General Manager Brian Gutekunst will keep talking, and time will tell if they can come to an agreement, which is rare for Green Bay.”

According to the Score Jordan Schultz, Green Bay prefers a deal for a wide receiver still on his rookie contract. Currently, the Packers have $7.5 million in financial flexibility to make a move, per Spotrac.

Three immediate options come to the fore based on needs and preferences.

PHILADELPHIA, PA - OCTOBER 30: Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Avonte Maddox (29) breaks up a pass attempt to Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Chase Claypool (11) during the game between the Pittsburg Steelers and Philadelphia Eagles on October 30, 2022 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA.  (Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ Chase Claypool-to-the-Packers rumor has been around for the past few weeks because a potential deal makes sense.

The Steelers are invested in Diontae Johnson and second-round rookie George Pickens. Claypool flashed, but he was very inconsistent.

For Green Bay, the 6’4″, 238-pound target can immediately add a weapon to work off the numbers and on the court. Watson was meant to fill that role, but he’s struggled with injuries, which hampered his development.

Elijah Moore wants to be traded by the New York Jets. The second-year wide receiver requested a trade before Week 7, according to the New York Postby Mark Cannizaro.

Even when the Jets have the sneaky threat on the field, he isn’t used. Quarterback Zach Wilson targeted Moore exactly once in Sunday’s 22-17 loss to the New England Patriots.

Asked about his lack of use, Moore told reporters: “I don’t even know. I couldn’t even tell you. I don’t get the ball. I don’t know.”

Another name that has come up in recent weeks is Jerry Jeudy of the Denver Broncos, though he’s starting to come alive on the team’s offense with 13 receptions for 159 yards over the past two weeks.

Maybe Green Bay is opening its portfolio a bit more and seriously considering the possibility of Brandin Cooks from the Houston Texans and Nelson Agholor or Kendrick Bourne from the New England Patriots. The organization should also inquire about the availability of Rondale Moore of the Arizona Cardinals, DJ Moore of the Carolina Panthers and Darius Slayton of the New York Giants.

Each of those aforementioned options would improve the talent found outside of the Packers’ offense.

The offensive line can still be a problem as the group continues to mix blockers in and out of the lineup. But David Bakhtiari’s full-time return to left tackle is a promising step forward. Eventually, Elgton Jenkins will be back from his current foot injury and complete the unit.

When that happens, and after the Packers move to wide receiver to help Rodgers and complement the team’s talented running backs, Green Bay may have a chance to make a run, get into the playoffs. and try to make noise.

Right now, Rodgers seems closer to exiting after this season than being excited about what’s to come. A small, large-scale power boost could give everyone in the building a jolt, including the most important voice in the locker room.


Brent Sobleski covers the NFL for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter, @brentsobleski.

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