Should Aaron Rodgers be at “voluntary” OTAs?

NFC Divisional Playoffs - San Francisco 49ers v Green Bay Packers
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It’s OTA season. Voluntary OTA season. Voluntary but not really voluntary.

Players don’t have to be there. Most who stay away have some plausible business reason for doing so — even though there’s a very real business risk associated with a player working out on his own.

Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray, for example, isn’t setting foot on a practice field until he gets his new contract. That’s smart. For Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, who could have his new contract whenever he wants it, his reasons for skipping the sessions during which the offense is being installed aren’t known.

Then there’s Aaron Rodgers. The Packers gave him a mammoth new contract after he decided not to retire or request a trade. He’s now getting more than $50 million per year. Meanwhile, the team’s receiver room is undergoing major overhaul following the trade of Davante Adams. And Rodgers isn’t there for the process of moving forward with new pieces at the position.

He doesn’t have to be, but (frankly) he should be. It’s critical to start building a rapport with newcomers like Sammy Watkins and second-round rookie Christian Watson. Although many (including Rodgers) have pushed the idea that the Packers have found plenty of great receivers in rounds two and three of the draft, none were expected to walk through the door as the No. 1 guy. Watson is.

Why wouldn’t Rodgers want to be there to begin the process of helping Watson get more comfortable in advance of training camp? Rodgers presumably wants to add to his legacy by winning another Super Bowl. Why wouldn’t he take full advantage of the opportunity to work with Watson and Watkins and the rest of the receivers in a less rushed and stressful environment?

While it won’t necessarily make the team any better in 2022, it won’t make the Packers any worse. And maybe that extra time spent in May and June will help the Packers, you know, not lose at home in the playoffs in January. Again.

This isn’t about whether Rodgers needs the OTA reps in order to be the best version of himself when the real games start. This is whether other players need Rodgers there to be the best version of themselves.

They surely do.

87 responses to “Should Aaron Rodgers be at “voluntary” OTAs?

  1. If he cared about his team and not losing the first round of the playoff, the answer is yes.

  2. What happens if Kyler Murray pops his Achilles at his local gym when he could have been at the facility? Whoops.

  3. A question only asked because there’s a lull in news between the draft and training camp. In a couple months no one will think a split second whether he attended OTAs.

  4. yes he should be. if it will stop him rolling his eyes everytime a receiver doesnt catch one of his passes is reason enough.
    The timing and getting on the same page with his new receiver corps is another.
    But who cares, you need an excuse for falling short in the playoffs again, right?

  5. Of course he should, but no surprise he isn’t. He’s all about me, as evidenced by his disowning of his own family.

  6. This is the second time in a couple weeks you ran this not “news” but “olds” story. I said it then and I’ll say it again. Rodgers told the Packers months ago he’s not coming to OTA’s

  7. He absolutely should. Not for him necessarily but part of being a NFL QB and a leader on the time is to help others succeed. Especially his receiving corp. which will need all the help they can get. As far as I can remember the QBs on teams who actually win playoff games, tend to show up to OTAs. And also often organize their own extra practices with their receivers outside of team activities.

  8. The kind of chemistry you’re talking about literally takes years to develop. Watson isn’t going to have it with Rodgers this year under any circumstance, and Rodgers no-showing a few weeks in late May and early June while Watson is still trying to get a grasp of the playbook isn’t going to make that much of a difference.

  9. I’ll trade some time in OTAs for him playing more in the preseason this year. The new guys are all learning the playbook still so this lets them get up to speed with the plays before Rodgers shows up and the pressure increases.

    Don’t want any of the rooks getting in Rodgers doghouse before they even know the playbook.

  10. He just won MVP. You’d think he’d actually do something to win it.

  11. Who’s he going to throw to? He gonna throw the ball to Jake from State Farm?

  12. Clearly voluntary workouts are a litmus test for who’s really all in. And I think that’s great. It’s not as if they’re in pads smacking each other. They’re in shorts, reuniting, maybe getting into the playbook a bit. What it really is, is, who’s all in? If a player only shows up when the CBA tells him he has to, I’d get rid of that player, regardless of how great he thinks he is. It’s about attitude and priorities. I think it’s insulting that Aaron makes sure to post Hawaiian vacation pics DURING his teams OTA’s, when he’s basically the only no-show.

  13. Prima donnas march to their own beat, haven’t we learned that by now?

  14. I love how so many talking heads believe Rodgers is the better qb between he and Brady. I doubly love how Brady chose sacrifice: money, time, his personal life for championships. I know at the end in NE he wasn’t there for everything voluntary but he was there for all of it for most of his career there would never sink his team with the kind of contract Rodgers just signed basically to spite the GB front office. I’m not saying players shouldn’t get as much money as they can if they want but it is a choice that impacts the team, that’s not debatable. Give me Brady over Rodgers every single day and twice on Sunday

  15. Who cares? All his rookie WRs who have issues with routes and holding on to passes. Opps, no timing, dropped another one. Got the stare.

  16. This is that valuable time in the off-season when Aaron searches for for a new celebrity girlfriend that’s going to later dump him because he’s more into football than he is into them.

  17. For what he’s being paid he shouldn’t have to be told to be there……………………….he should definitely be there. Something tells me the Packers have had their run, a monster will come from the NFC North and it won’t be the Packers!

  18. theoriginalsurferbob says:
    May 27, 2022 at 8:19 pm

    Clearly voluntary workouts are a litmus test for who’s really all in.

    ++++++++

    When did virtue-signaling become so entrenched?

  19. Let the newcomers learn how to “wax on, wax off” first before they learn karate. Learn the book/routes first, no need to waste Rodgers time.

  20. “A question only asked because there’s a lull in news between the draft and training camp. In a couple months no one will think a split second whether he attended OTAs.” This dude is right–nobody will care soon.

  21. Usually this time of year he’s getting ready for a big golf tournament, the American Century Championship in South Lake Tahoe July 6-10.

  22. Um… he’ll have two months of camp to get to work with them. And they all pretty much know the general ideas.

  23. Doing the minimum required is never the recipe for success. Does he have to be there? Technically no. But time spent now working with the receivers helps to build rapport. Things that are critical during crucial moments of games. But hey Aaron – you be you. Because we he points the fingers about things that could be improved it’s never at him

  24. When is the last time a QB skipped OTA’s and won a super bowl? I don’t know the answer. Is it never or all the time?

  25. I am sure the other Packers are enjoying the time he is not there.

  26. You know what else is voluntary? Choosing to be an NFL quarterback. Choosing to be The Man. Choosing to be the team leader on the field of play.

    Those things come with the price of some responsibility. At a minimum, it’s leadership by example.

  27. It was never about the money or extended contract, it was about Aaron Rodgers. Now that he’s got the recognition, he could care less what the team does. 2 more years and he’s out, bank on it.

  28. Is Tom Brady at the otas? Joe Burrow? Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen? Matt Stafford?

  29. Does anyone truly think participating in the VOLUNTARY otas by a back-to-back MVP will have any bearing on playoff performance?? Rodgers will have plenty of time to develop chemistry with his new pieces in camp, preseason and 17 games.

  30. It doesn’t matter. Either Rodgers wins the SuperBowl this year, no excuses, or he’s a goner. It’ll either be voluntarily or involuntarily. It doesn’t matter. Win it or walk.

  31. He doesn’t need the practice, but his receivers do. Jordan Love can throw them the ball, but he can’t make them better receivers or show them how Aaron wants them to run routes or read things when the coverage is this way or that. Rodgers will play great, but he’ll only have himself to blame when his receivers are looking ahead instead of reaching for the back shoulder. Rodgers should be there, but not for his own benefit. This is just further proof that he doesn’t really care about a championship. He just wants his stats, his money, and his fame. If he wanted another ring & trophy, he’d be putting the team above his own needs and helping them learn what he wants right now.

  32. Aaron Rodgers is perhaps the best QB in the game today. Whatever he’s doing to prepare himself to play at that level is working. Take Rodgers off the team and they win 5 games. I might not want Rodgers as my best bud, but I haven’t seen too many men play QB the way he does. If you haven’t been paying attention, you’re missing one heck of a show.

  33. I disagree, if any NFL starting QB doesn’t show up for ota’s…voluntary or not. I’m guessing we’d know all about it.

  34. Yes, He is suppose to be a Leader and he should be there for the young guys.

  35. The 4x MVP will be just fine. The Packers top 5 D will make sure of that!

  36. Starting QBs league wide skip OTAs very frequently. It is not uncommon whatsoever. Covering a QB skipping them to this extent is uncommon. Or at least it should be.

    Take a look at Rodgers stats and the Packers record the first four games of the season over his career and get out of here with these horrible takes.

  37. charliecharger says:
    May 27, 2022 at 11:13 pm
    Aaron Rodgers is perhaps the best QB in the game today. Whatever he’s doing to prepare himself to play at that level is working. Take Rodgers off the team and they win 5 games. I might not want Rodgers as my best bud, but I haven’t seen too many men play QB the way he does. If you haven’t been paying attention, you’re missing one heck of a show.
    —————-

    “Greatness is a lot of small things done well. Stacked up on top of each other”. ~Ray Lewis~

    It’s those small things like OTAs, voluntary work outs etc that lead to the success of a team. And whose the most important player on an NFL team? The quarterback! Rodgers has shown he is the most important person on the team by not showing up setting the example that the rules do not apply to him. Whilst it may not be a rule or mandatory to attend, putting in the effort shows your teammates you want to lead the team.

    Vet or not you show up. Wanna know why the late great Eddie Van Halen was a virtuoso on guitar? He paid attention to the small things, tweaking his sound, messing with the electronics, inventing new techniques always pushing himself to be better. He didn’t rest on his laurels and lived off the success of one album. Rodgers has one Super Bowl and he’s lived off it for more than a decade.

    Let Love take all the reps its a convenient excuse and rationalization for Packer Rubes and fan boys like Peter King. Rodgers should be there talking to HIS WR corp about ball placement, where he like to place his throws. Its all about timing in the passing game – and at Rodgers age skills decline quickly for athletes.

    Rodgers does not want to do the small things, hence only one Super Bowl win.

  38. Aaron Rodgers has never been a good leader. It’s why despite being more talented than Tom Brady, he has only managed 1 ring and it was with the best defense he’s ever had, led by Charles Woodson.

  39. golforepar says:
    May 28, 2022 at 8:30 am
    The 4x MVP will be just fine. The Packers top 5 D will make sure of that!
    ———————-
    So the narrative has changed from how many Super Bowls has your team won to how many MVPs your team’s QB has won? 4x Super Bowl winner sounds alot better don’t ya think?

  40. How many QBs have a house in Malibu? But armchair experts are critical? Now that is funny!

  41. OTA’s? He only bonds with money. Look at the women he’s thrown away. He has issues bonding.

  42. Rumors around Green Bay indicate Rodgers absence wasn’t a big deal. The team wants to give Jordan Love as many reps as possible. It wasn’t just Rodgers. Others not attending: CB Jaire Alexander, WR Sammy Watkins, LB Rashan Gary, WR Allen Lazard, LB Preston Smith, CB Rasul Douglas and TE Marcedes Lewis.

    The mandatory minicamp is next month so we’ll see then.

  43. Let me see if I have this correct from a contractual point of view. I imagine in every contract an NFL player signs it states that OTAs are voluntary. This was agreed to by the NFL and the NFLPA.

  44. My two cents. To me its all about Rodgers being a me me person. First I agree with King that Rogers covets his passing percentage record, way more then super bowls. He has one of those and that’s a team thing. Pass percentage is about him against the world if you will.
    That’s why I think he under performs in playoffs because he is more concerned with NOT tossing a pick and losing the game more then trying to thread any needles and win the game. Winning is about the team. Losing due to an interception is all about you. Thus he isnt at the OTA’s because thats a team thing and doesn’t involve him. He is an island.

  45. Enough is enough make otas mandatory or let the players decide if they want to go to “voluntary” work outs.
    How many of you would go into work if it were “voluntary”?
    Anybody working from home these days?

  46. AR not being there only makes Jordan Love better as he gets all the much needed reps.AR will be there soon enough,its a long hot summer.

  47. Yes. All qb’s should be there. I don’t care how good or experienced they are.

  48. This is an extremely odd stance coming from the lawyer/reporter who constantly berates players for doing anything NFL related unless there’s a financial incentive involved. 🤔

    Even chastising college prospects for realizing a life long dream of going to the NFL Draft and walking that stage, or attending the Combine despite the fact THERE IS a financial incentive on the backend for testing well and raising their draft stock.

    Oh, that’s right, it’s that whole Mike Florio/Aaron Rodgers dustup over the last several years.
    C’mon, Mike, let it go already.
    We get it, he insulted you.
    It’s time to stop being such an overt hypocrite, bury your purple pride and finally get past this, put it to rest.

    I know you’ll never post this because you are simply too sensitive to public criticism and being called out when you’re so obviously wrong……hmm, sound familiar. 🤣

  49. If he “loves” the game of football, he should be there. And for $50m a year, definitely should be there. No excuses. NONE

  50. It would be better for the team if Rodgers attended OTAs, but that is a decision for Rodgers and the Packers.

    I’m sure that Vikings, Lions and Beasr fans are happy that Rodgers is not at OTAs

  51. It’s common for the Packers to add bonus $$$$ to players contracts that specify attending OTA’s. For players that team management definitely want in camp for OTA’s,… they pay them. If Rodgers doesn’t have $$$$ in his contract to attend OTA’s,… which are voluntary,…. then they feel comfortable he doesn’t need the extra work. Viking fans seem to think differently,…. but their teams are looking UP at GB in the standings year after year,…. right ? How many Lombardi’s do they have ?? I forget. HaHa,…..

  52. As long as packer mgmt falls all over themselves to make sure Rodgers spirits are good what else matters? Right

  53. His overgrowing collection of Lombardis suggest of course not…he doesn’t need OTAs. Keep doing things the same way👍🏽

  54. After years of showing up at OTAs, Brady did the same thing…it didn’t end well. Young and even older players need his direction and time to build or continue building chemistry and trust…

  55. To those Packer fans that constantly act as if they own the Vikings…..you are wrong.

    In the last 10 games vs the Vikings, the Packers are 4-5-1. The Packers own the Bears and Detroit, but the Vikings and Packers have been evenly matched.

  56. Aren’t there other players missing from VOLUNTARY OTA’s. But yeah let’s pick on Rodgers. Also I laugh at drawing the line on the Packers vs Vikings at 10 games. Rodgers has played against the Vikes in more than the last 10. Give me the complete stats for his career against them. Here’s a hint 14-10-1.

  57. It’s best he stays away until he cuts that man bun. It’s sad when an old guy tries to hang on like that.

  58. I just like how the same people who claim Rodgers only cares about his passer rating were also the same dummies who said Aaron Rodgers was throwing the ball away to spite McCarthy.

    Meanwhile the Vikings have been running a checkdown offense for years and half their fans are still giddy about Cousins, the epitome of average.

  59. radar773 says:
    May 28, 2022 at 4:09 pm
    To those Packer fans that constantly act as if they own the Vikings…..you are wrong. In the last 10 games vs the Vikings, the Packers are 4-5-1. The Packers own the Bears and Detroit, but the Vikings and Packers have been evenly matched.
    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Two of those Viking wins were when Rodgers was out following the intentional Barr injury, which also made the Top Ten Viking Sports Moments of the Decade. Break out the confetti.

  60. The simple solution is to put attendance into his contract and make it mandatory. As long as it’s voluntary it is up to the player.

  61. And I’m 100% certain that all of the people here ripping Rodgers for not showing up for a voluntary workout also show up at their jobs on their days off.

  62. If he cares about winning then he should be there. If he is just interested in collecting paychecks then no.

  63. tavisteelersfan says:
    May 27, 2022 at 10:27 pm
    Is Tom Brady at the otas? Joe Burrow? Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen? Matt Stafford?
    //////
    First, Rodgers is no Tom Brady. Let’s make that clear. Borrows is at OTA’S. Mahomes has been working out with his skill players in Texas. And he was at OTA’S. Josh Allen was also at OTA’s. And Matt Stafford? He was at OTA’S, but didn’t throw a pass because of an inflamed elbow. So, it turns out, your question was quite bad.

  64. Mitch Kumstein says:
    May 28, 2022 at 9:51 pm
    And I’m 100% certain that all of the people here ripping Rodgers for not showing up for a voluntary workout also show up at their jobs on their days off.
    //////
    It really is a silly comparison when Rodgers makes $50 mil. However, my job is salaried, so yes, sometimes I work into the evening, on weekends, and even holidays, for no extra pay.

  65. KnowsMoreThanYou says:
    May 29, 2022 at 4:38 pm
    Mitch Kumstein says:
    May 28, 2022 at 9:51 pm
    And I’m 100% certain that all of the people here ripping Rodgers for not showing up for a voluntary workout also show up at their jobs on their days off.

    ——————-

    If you want to be great in the NFL, THERE ARE NO DAYS OFF PERIOD!

  66. The same guy complaining about not drafting receivers instead of QB Love, is now not spending reps with the receivers they draft for him? Got it.

  67. Rodgers told the Packers months ago he’s not coming to OTA’s. Uhh yeah before the Diva knew DA was bailing out. But back to the question, no and hell no. The WRs have got months to memorize Diva’s woke playbook and no matter what it’ll be their fault. Of course Watkins isn’t showing up. Why? To catch balls from a guy he’ll never ever see during the season? No. The bar has been set again lower than all the bars in GB. NFCN ……maybe and out.

  68. Does anyone even BOTHER looking at stats anymore before calling him a “non-leader” and acting like the GB defense has carried that team since 2008?! Stop hating on this guy, when he shows up and puts another average 4000+ yrd 35td 6 int yr.. you all can blame him again for a weak playoff run after giving him a total of “zero” wrs this season, no OLine help, and saying that that “elite GB defense (giving up 24+ pts a game) carried him.

  69. In a word, yes, he should attend OTA’s…..but the actual impact is far overstated. Really, he played a crap playoff game against SF in the playoffs, was that because he missed OTA’s?? As if!! Yes, perfect world he is there….but has anyone mentioned that Alan Lazard and Sammy Watkins aren’t there either? Does that mean they won’t be important WR contributors come September? Hardly. We also can’t really calculate the actual value of escape, rest and vacation from what is a pretty grueling season….at his age, I can’t say that the complete mental reset is more important than 2-3 days of playing catch without tackling.

  70. So the narrative has changed from how many Super Bowls has your team won to how many MVPs your team’s QB has won? 4x Super Bowl winner sounds alot better don’t ya think?
    ==========

    4 Titles is the bar?

    Brady
    Bradshaw
    Starr
    Montana

    … looks more like the barely achievable dream.

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