As rift widens between Aaron Rodgers and Packers, head coach Matt LaFleur keeps hope alive for reconciliation | Pro football
GREEN BAY — Matt LaFleur’s not exactly sure what he can do to fix this whole mess, but the Green Bay Packers head coach vowed Saturday evening that he’s going to try.
On a day that Yahoo! Sports reported that reigning NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers has told the team that he won’t return as long as Brian Gutekunst is the general manager, and team president/CEO Mark Murphy publicly acknowledged there is an “issue” between the team and the quarterback, LaFleur sounded like the man stuck in the middle.
LaFleur and Rodgers have managed to forge a close working relationship and friendship over the past two seasons — even after Rodgers’ relationship with his previous head coach, Mike McCarthy, turned sour — and it doesn’t appear Rodgers’ unhappiness with the organization has anything to do with the coach, who like Gutekunst and Murphy had flown out to the West Coast earlier this offseason to talk with Rodgers.
“I know the reports out there. I mean, this guy is our quarterback, he’s the leader of our team, and I want nothing more than to see him back in a Packer uniform,” LaFleur said in a Zoom call after the three-day NFL draft drew to a close.
“We’ve been able to accomplish a lot of great feats over the last two years — two straight NFC Championship games. I know the seasons haven’t ended the way we’ve wanted them to, but in my eyes, he’s the greatest to ever do it. I don’t care about (not making) Super Bowls or whatnot. We want him back here.”