Raise your hand if you needed to know any NFL player’s bowel or vomiting habits.
Well, thanks to Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers weekly spot on Pat McAfee’s show, we learned Rodgers has been on a Panchakarma Cleanse which includes—among other things—force feeding yourself clarified butter until it comes out of both ends and lots and lots of enemas.
What we didn’t learn is what Rodgers has decided to do this offseason, as it is widely believed in NFL circles that he will not be back in Green Bay. The team, of course, wants him back, but they may not have the juice (in terms of either draft capital or salary cap space) to do enough to keep him around. He wants a front running team, and the Packers can’t make the case that they’ll be any better in 2022 than they’ve been the past couple of seasons.
Meanwhile, every single other QB-needy team will be having internal discussions about whether or not they should go after Rodgers and whether they can make the case that the grass is greener on their side of the fence.
The juxtaposition between the news of Rodgers’ “cleanse” and the team he’s thinking of leaving behind could not be any more stark. Although I’m not from Wisconsin, the good people of Green Bay are decidedly “my kind of people.” I’ve spent plenty of time in the state and in that area specifically and I’ve spent enough time in the Midwest as an overweight sportswriter to know the joys of cheese curds, Wisconsin beer, bratwurst and a good butterburger.
Rodgers’ cosmopolitan lifestyle and the fact he literally ran to one of the most hipster, non-midwest retreats one could find is telling. Green Bay may be where he plies his trade, but he is still a Californian boy through and through. If all things are equal with the talent sides of the equation—tough, because Green Bay has far more talent around Rodgers than they’re given credit for—he’ll almost certainly choose to get out of dodge.
When he does, the entire NFL is going to feel the aftershocks.
Until then, we wait…like a Panchakarma cleanser waiting for the ritual vomiting.
The Schottey Six: Reasons the Rams Can Repeat
It is very difficult to repeat as Super Bowl champions, but the Rams are as talented of a team as we’ve seen in a while. Can they do it? The odds are stacked against them, but here are some reasons they could…
1. They Get Robert Woods Back— It’s still a little surprising they got where they did without such a huge piece of their offensive puzzle. This is a bigger deal than most think.
2. Stafford/Cupp Not Going Anywhere— Still, the core of this offense is the chemistry between these two new best buds. That shouldn’t change moving forward.
3. A Defense Hungry for More— Assuming Aaron Donald doesn’t retire and with the hope that Von Miller re-signs, this defense should be just as impactful in 2022 (and beyond?)
4. Looming Stafford Extension— While the Rams don’t have a ton of money on paper right now, they will work to extend Stafford’s contract and that will free up a ton of money to sign a few free agents.
5. Built Around Midround Talent—Although the team famously has traded away high picks, the midround picks they’ve made in recent years have paid dividends. There’s little reason to think that won’t continue.
6. An Easier Road— Tom Brady just left the NFL and Aaron Rodgers might be leaving the conference. Throw in the uncertainty in San Francisco, Seattle and now Arizona and it’s arguable that the Rams will have a much easier time getting back to the Super Bowl than they did getting there in 2021.
Cleaning Out the Notebook:
— I know I just talked about the uncertainty in Arizona and it’s more than a little embarrassing that QB Kyler Murray and “anonymous sources” appear to be having a public pissing match, but we’ve had two straight “home team” Super Bowls. If DeAndre Hopkins can get healthy and stay healthy, and if the Cardinals can add a few more pieces here and there, it’s not crazy to think we could go three in a row with next year’s Super Bowl in Glendale.
— I love the Pittsburgh Steelers’ hire of Brian Flores as their Linebackers Coach. He’s ridiculously overqualified for the position, but that’s not on the Steelers who made a shrew move with the current landscape. That said, let’s not applaud the move as a positive for NFL diversity…minority coaches getting position coaching jobs (especially on the defensive side of the ball) has never been the problem.
— I’m mildly excited about the USFL Draft tonight, but I don’t love the league’s chances. They’re playing all of their games in Alabama this season which takes away any semblance of “hometown” pride in any of these franchises and the XFL has just brokered a partnership with the NFL. I’ll watch even the worst football, but I don’t see this league sticking around.
— The NFL Combine is only in a few days now and the drama around the league’s COVID plans has been a bit of a pock mark on an otherwise boring offseason so far. Do I think the NFL should take COVID precautions? Absolutely! Do I think the NFL should get to dictate that the prospects (who are not yet fully protected by the Union) bear the entire load of the COVID restrictions while teams essentially get to operate as normal? No, no I do not. Ask yourself if Jerry Jones was going to truly be “bubbled up” in Indianapolis. There was no chance.
— A few weeks ago, Broncos Head Coach Nathaniel Hackett made news with his plans to hire what was being billed as a “coach for the coaches,” which, if you think about it, is typically what a head coach does. It turns out that he hired John Vieira who held a similar role (though with less fanfare or permanence) with the Packers and is a former classmate of Hackett’s. For those keeping score at home, Hackett—who has gotten every chance to succeed because of his last name—is apparently mostly interested in hiring people who also have a NFL-related last name or who I guess showed him how to tap a keg in college.
— Roger Goodell is reportedly working on a contract extension, which…whatever. He’s arguably the most successful NFL commissioner ever, but I’d argue that two monkeys tied together at their tails could have made just as much money (with probably fewer unforced errors) at the helm of today’s NFL.
— I got my Super Bowl pick right and even got the margin of victory correct although I had both teams scoring 10 more points than they did in reality. That's not as impressive as Upset Watch, though, who was only three points off a piece. If you're not reading Upset Watch, you're really missing out.
— Stay tuned to Pickwatch throughout the offseason, we're going to have a ton of content coming your way. Coming up next for me later in the week? My first mock draft. Feel the excitement!
"If you're not IN the parade, you WATCH the parade. That's life."- Mike Ditka