It has been an offseason of change throughout the Green Bay Packers organization.
A new defensive coordinator headlines a slew of changes on Mike McCarthy’s coaching staff, but it was a change at quarterbacks coach, Alex Van Pelt, that seemed to raise the ire of Aaron Rodgers most. Tack on the decision to part ways with receiver Jordy Nelson, and perhaps the Super Bowl winning signal caller and long-time thorn in the Bears side has a reason (or two) to be disgruntled.
Sources use the words “frustrated” and “emotional” when it comes to Rodgers regarding the moves that severed ties with his position coach and one of his favorite receivers, according to Charles Robinson of Yahoo! Sports.
“Both of those decisions [with Nelson and Pelt] were made without him” a league source close to Rodgers told Robinson. “In both situations, he had no ifnluence with [the front office] before anything went down.”
Trouble in paradise? OK, so Green Bay won’t ever be confused with paradise. Especially not after an April blizzard. But this isn’t the kind of news we expect to hear coming out of Packerland. And not when Rodgers has been looking for a contract extension that would keep him happy (and in Green Bay) for the foreseeable future.
Rodgers has since downplayed the tensions reported in Robinson’s report while speaking at Day 1 of the Packers’ minicamp, telling ESPN’s Rob Demovsky: “You have to trust the process.”
In fairness, The Process has worked for Green Bay more often than not. However, it’s understandable why Rodgers wouldn’t be happy with an lack of communication. After all, it probably doesn’t sit right with Rodgers for all this to go down in an offseason that followed a regular season that showed how many organizational flaws were covered up by the star quarterback’s stellar play.
Even though we’re in a world where players play, coaches coach, and general managers generally manage the talent, quarterbacks are the exception to the rule and are often an extension of the head coach.
We often hear about how great quarterbacks work as de facto coaches on the field. With that being said, maybe quarterbacks (particularly ones as good as Rodgers) should probably be more in the loop with The Process. And yet, it doesn’t appear Green Bay feels that way. Hence, the Packers’ decision makers don’t seem to see eye-to-eye with the player who is impacted most by each decision.