Reports and rumors have recently surfaced the 49ers could hijack a potential deal for quarterback Aaron Rodgers, which makes absolutely no sense.
If you’ve been checking out the news and NFL rumors from the past day or two, you would be shocked to see the claim that the San Francisco 49ers could potentially hijack the trade for quarterback Aaron Rodgers that everyone assumed was happening between the Green Bay Packers and New York Jets.
Here’s what Packers insider Craig Carton said Tuesday on FS1:
"So here’s the reality: San Francisco does not have a first-round draft pick in this draft — they gave them all away to get Trey Lance. They do however, because of compensatory picks, have three third-round picks. So the conversation has been multiple third-round picks in this draft and a first-round pick in next year’s draft."
Seems interesting in a vacuum. Assuming the Niners perform strongly next season, a 2024 first-round pick and a few picks late on Day 2 this season are more than acceptable for a piece that would make them the strongest team in the NFL.
Why this rumor about Aaron Rodgers to the 49ers isn’t happening
There are two reasons why this is only a pipedream. One is financial, the other is out of San Francisco’s control.
The 49ers used their salary cap space to sign defensive tackle Javon Hargrave and keep their potent defense humming. The team currently has a shade over $3 million in space, according to Over The Cap, and Rodgers is a massive cap hit for any team. The Niners would have to sacrifice the likes of wide receiver Deebo Samuel or linebacker Fred Warner in a trade to free up the cash for what essentially is a rental for a season or two.
Secondly, the NFL landscape. The Packers are officially moving forward with quarterback Jordan Love, but it doesn’t mean they’re going to be handing Rodgers over to an NFC compatriot (especially a big rival like the 49ers) no matter the price.
Long story short, the Niners are being used as a smokescreen to try to get the Jets over the line and meet the Packers’ demands that are holding up the deal.
While some might be hopeful for one more big splash, don’t expect Rodgers to be wearing red and gold in 2023. The money, circumstances and politics just make zero sense for this move to happen.