Up until this recent offseason, Aaron Rodgers was synonymous with the Green Bay Packers organization.
Number 12 for the “Pack” embraced everything there was to embrace with the Packers for 18 seasons, all filled with ups and downs, but probably a lot more ups.
There were many that thought the 39-year-old quarterback would always wear the gold and green in Lambeau Field, but a trade was finalized (finally) yesterday to send him to the New York Jets.
Thus ending an emotional and successful run with the team who drafted him back in 2005.
Some might say that Rodgers and the Packers should’ve done more with the future hall of famer’s career, but his greatness with the small-town NFL team will never be doubted.
Rodgers took to Instagram and posted a lengthy note, along with various pictures, about his appreciation and gratitude for the franchise that he helped lead to a Super Bowl in 2011:
I’m not sure it’s possible to fully express the gratitude that I have to the Packers, our incredible fans, the state of Wisconsin, the thousands of players that I crossed paths with, the incredible men and women who work for the organization, and the amazing people who I got to meet along the way, in one post with 10 pictures, but I hope you read this and feel my heart and soul, filled with love, joy, and peace about my time in green and gold.
I grew up in Green Bay, drafted at 21, fell in love with the game, met some lifelong friends, and take with me memories that will last a lifetime.
I’m grateful to the late Ted Thompson for drafting me, for my head coaches, especially the 13 years with Mike McCarthy, and the last 4 with Matt LaFleur. I had some incredible men to work with in the QB room over the years including Tom, AVP, Luke, and Connor.
Huge thank you to my guys in the equipment room, Red, TBone, Odea, Kev, Bryan, Andy Grouber, All my dear friends in the training room over the years, Nate, Flea, Doc McKenzie, Doc Gray, Pepp, and Cuz.
The legendary Adam Korzun and his incredible staff; Dougie, Crabby, and Scotty, for always looking out for me; Tom, Nate, Sarah, and Jason in PR, Evan for bringing my work life to film, The Rock and Wayne, for giving words to the highlights of my career, Grey, and Big Rob for your work with our guys over the years, Bloke, Thad, Grant and Gizz in the weight room, Bob Harlan, Russ Ball, Mark Murphy and Brian Gutekunst for your stewardship of the organization, every one on the 3rd and 4th floors who make that building run smoothly, and so many countless others at the loading dock, tours, concessions, maintenance, our field crew, etc.
To the fans, THANK YOU, you made every run out of the tunnel special, every home game magical, and it was my honor to be your QB.
To my teammates, I love you all, and am thankful for the moments on and off the field that brought us close. I played with legends, I played with friends; thanks for believing in me and having my back always.
This is not the end for us, I will see you again Green Bay, you’ll always have my heart.
Rodgers now moves on to the New York Jets, who are immediately being talked about as Super Bowl favorites with the addition of the 4-time NFL MVP.
They were just one quarterback away last year, and “Gang Green” appears to have gotten their guy.
Side note: this is the exact same career trajectory that former Packer Brett Favre took. So as a Vikings fan, I’m excited to welcome Rodgers to the team after he retires and then un-retires in a couple of years.
Hopefully Rodgers doesn’t follow Favre’s career moves exactly though, considering the legal trouble Favre now finds himself in…