The Jets announced this week that they’ve opened QB Aaron Rodgers’ 21-day practice window. This means the team will have three weeks to decide if they want to activate him off the IR for the remainder of the season.
Of course, Rodgers’ health and New York’s playoff chances will factor into that decision. It would be unbelievable to see Aaron return from his Achilles injury in such a short amount of time, however, I’d much rather wait until next season.
The Risk Outweighs The Reward
Aaron Rodgers returned to practice on Wednesday for the first time this year since heading into Week One. Rodgers received an innovative surgery that could get him back on the field much sooner than we’ve seen players have in the past regarding Achilles injuries. This alone is an incredible accomplishment considering the Jets’ quarterback is only 11 weeks removed from surgery. The fact that Aaron is breaking barriers on something that has never been done before is more of a reason to be extra cautious when deciding if he’s ready to play or not.
Don’t get me wrong, I respect and credit Aaron Rodgers for being so positive throughout this process, along with his willingness and fight to get back onto the field. It’s what you wanna see out of the leader of your team. At the same time, the Jets must also take Rodgers’ health and the organization’s future into consideration.
This conversation does get interesting if the Jets manage to win their next three games and get back into the playoff push before Rodgers’ hopeful return date of December 24th. Unfortunately, with the current state of this offense, it’s hard to get behind this team being capable of accomplishing that task.
Not only has OC Nathaniel Hackett been a disappointment in adapting to life without Rodgers, but the offensive line has been in shambles for the majority of the season. The Jets lost right tackle Alijah Vera-Tucker for the year, center Connor McGovern has missed an extended amount of time, and most recently left tackle Mekhi Becton has been dealing with an injury of his own.
After seeing this update from Rodgers himself, there are just too many unknowns that go into this situation. The fact that Rodgers could be playing at less than 100% during one of the most competitive parts of the NFL season just doesn’t seem like a smart decision. This brings me to my next point, the Jets threw away this season months ago, so why does it make sense to care now at the expense of an extremely risky decision?
The Jets Were Never Serious
Another reason why I don’t think that it’s a good idea for Aaron Rodgers to play this season dates back to my last article. The Jets never took this season seriously once Rodgers went down. They stuck with Zach Wilson for far too long and made no effort to bring in a quarterback that could keep this team afloat. The damage is done.
Due to the current state of this team, it seems like nothing good can come from Aaron Rodgers playing football in 2023. After the malpractice of not having or finding a suitable backup to Rodgers, the last thing that the Jets need is to play him in what most likely will be a meaningless game and risk injury that could affect the team next season.
Even if Rodgers is advocating to play, it’s ultimately up to the organization to make the final decision. They have a responsibility to do what’s best for Aaron and this team. God forbid something goes wrong, this could potentially be another huge knock on Saleh and Douglas for mismanaging another aspect of this season. As much as Jets fans, along with myself, are dying to see some success on offense, it might just have to wait until next season.