When the ball disappears behind the foul pole, it means it’s a home run. I learned this as a 7-year-old watching baseball on WGN. Does this make me more qualified than a major-league umpire? Who’s to say…
• Among the highlights of another wild and unpredictable offseason is the beef between Aaron Rodgers and the Packers front office. Rodgers has reportedly told teammates he isn’t coming back and mocked his GM by referring to him as Jerry Krause. He said some cryptic stuff on SportsCenter, didn’t show up to OTAs, or mandatory minicamp. And the Packers have found ways to make it more publicly awkward than this probably needed to be. All of the has brought us to this point of the year where the vibe is that Rodgers won’t be back with the Packers this season. I still think there is a real chance he is back at some point. Perhaps after sitting out Week 1 to really drive home a point. But what if there is an alternative that fits the craziness of this whole situation?
• Like him or lump him, you’ve gotta respect PFT’s Mike Florio and his hustle. Especially when he goes outside of the box. For instance, Florio believes the NFL has given Rodgers an escape hatch (should he choose to use it). The newest agreement between the NFL and NFLPA allows for players to opt out of playing in 2021, regardless of if they did so in 2020 or are considered to be high risk. And while players who choose that route won’t be eligible for a stipend like they were last year, it’s the power to wield an option to choose not to play with no strings attached that piques Florio’s interest.
• Granted, it would come with Rodgers giving up $11.5 million in signing bonus cash. And it’s a decision that would need to be made by July 2. That’s just around the corner, which makes it not as plausible as one might think. HOWEVER … I can’t help but wonder if Rodgers is this brand of petty to do this in order to make a point.
• It’s not as if Jordan Love is easing any concerns in Packers camp. This nugget has been on my mind since reading Albert Breer last week. Because while Breer reports Love has made progress with his footwork, calls in the huddle, and some other minor things, there is still work to do:
“But just how much ground he’s made up on one of the greatest of all-time, I’m not sure. And I’d think he’d have to make up a lot for LaFleur or Gutekunst to move off their position on Rodgers at all, which is where what No. 10 does is relevant to No. 12. And one thing I can say is those guys still want No. 12 back badly.”
• When the Packers moved on from Brett Favre and gave the keys to Rodgers, the young up-start (at the time) was well seasoned as a backup. And the time had come for Rodgers to take the next step. It doesn’t seem as if Love is at that point yet. Maybe he will get there some day. But he isn’t there right now. If Love was, the Packers might consider moving Rodgers for a king’s ransom. Instead, as Breer writes, it’s clear the powers that be want Rodgers back badly.
• Speaking of moving, former Bears Head Coach Mike Ditka is weighing in on the Arlington Heights stuff. “The Chicago Bears belong in the city of Chicago. That’s it,” Ditka said, via the Daily Herald. “Call me an old-timer, call me a traditionalist, whatever. They’re a Chicago institution, and that should be the end of it.” Sure, that’s the most predictable Ditka answer ever. But I see no lies. Yes, the Bears deserve a brand spankin’ new facility with all the bells and whistles. However, it would be neat if it was in a centralized location such as Chicago. You can want both, after all.
• In that vein, I read this after sleeping in this morning:
The Bears’ 2034 home opener finally is upon us.
After another grueling rebuild, fans are once again excited about Super Bowl prospects — and the debut of their new retractable dome in Arlington Heights.@PWSullivan explains how it all probably happened.https://t.co/WXYNPDEnAP
— Chicago Tribune Sports (@ChicagoSports) June 27, 2021
• I suppose while new digs are on our mind, we can share that Khalil Mack’s Glencoe mansion is up for sale. Anyone have $5 million I can borrow? I’ll invite you to the house-warming party!
• Love seeing the Bears’ top two receivers put in work:
• Indoor grilling, bedding, and more are your Deals of the Day at Amazon. #ad