Despite being one of the worst NFL head coaches in recent memory, former Denver Broncos head coach and Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett has already found a new job with the New York Jets.
According to reports, the Jets have hired Hackett to be their offensive coordinator after the team parted ways with Mike LaFleur at the end of last season.
Given Hackett’s stint in Green Bay and his connection to Aaron Rodgers, some NFL reporters and fans believe this is a sign that the Jets could be trying to work out a trade for the four-time MVP.
It is too late for me not to get my hopes up. I am connecting the dots. I am speaking it into existence. Aaron Rodgers. Please, let this happen. #Jets pic.twitter.com/NPRbFMFyWh
— Mike Greenberg (@Espngreeny) January 26, 2023
“Rodgers to the jets” is the new “Rodgers to Denver” isn’t it. 😒
— Annie Agar (@AnnieAgar) January 26, 2023
From @TheAthletic: Fifteen years after Aaron Rodgers replaced Brett Favre as the Packers quarterback, the Jets, the team that traded for Favre, could pursue Rodgers. https://t.co/16GiqSVgw2
— The New York Times (@nytimes) January 26, 2023
Hackett, who served as the Packers’ offensive coordinator from 2019 to 2021, was fired by the Broncos after just 15 games in charge (his record was 4-11). Given his tenure saw Rodgers win back-to-back MVP awards, some within NFL circles believe the Jets have made this hire in order to entice Rodgers to join the team, which would immediately become a Super Bowl contender with him behind center.
Aaron Rodgers and Nathaniel Hackett to the jets pic.twitter.com/Qg80z7lY88
— slapnick prospect (@electricsnuff) January 26, 2023
Jets brass to Aaron Rodgers the next few months https://t.co/UMWxeh4Ytd pic.twitter.com/7oleMQS1J9
— Kev (@klew24) January 26, 2023
Head coach Robert Saleh certainly added fuel to that fire as he told the media on Thursday that the team is “committed to finding a veteran [quarterback].
Thinking out loud…
If Nathaniel Hackett lands the New York #Jets OC position, I’d 💯 expect him to lobby for an Aaron Rodgers reunion (both at Green Bay when top offense in 2020). 🤔 #NFL
— 𝒥𝒾𝓂 𝐸𝓋𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓉𝓉 (@Jim_Everett) January 18, 2023
#Jets first linked to Hackett after LaFleur's parting. Didn't seem smart after what happened in Denver. I dug some on that.
Dysfunctional doesn't begin to describe Broncos — it had nothing to do with the HC.
This is a very good hire. If it means Aaron Rodgers?
— Connor Hughes (@Connor_J_Hughes) January 26, 2023
Nathaniel Hackett getting his 2nd job in as many years after telling the interviewer he knows Aaron Rodgers: pic.twitter.com/f2gnRX2ttT
— Daire Carragher (@DaireCarragher) January 26, 2023
The Jets are coming off an 8-9 season that not only saw them, once again, miss out on the playoffs but also lose complete confidence in Zach Wilson, who was drafted as the #2 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft with the expectation of becoming the organization’s franchise QB.
While Rodgers isn’t necessarily coming off of his best season — in fact, 2022 was arguably the worst he’s played in years — he’d be such a significant upgrade for the Jets that they’d immediately be considered contenders in the AFC given their Top 5 defense and talent on offense.
Making a move for an aging Packers legend at the end of his career certainly wouldn’t be out of the ordinary with the Jets as they pulled the same stunt with Brett Favre about 15 years ago. While the experiment started off promising (after 11 games, the Jets were 8-3 and were the #1 seed in the AFC), the bottom ultimately fell out and they missed the playoffs altogether.
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