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What Do You Expect from Jets QB Aaron Rodgers in 2024?

Four-Time NFL MVP Ruptured Left Achilles Tendon in 2023 Season


Throughout the offseason, reporters Eric Allen, Ethan Greenberg, Randy Lange, Caroline Hendershot and John Pullano will give their responses to a series of questions regarding this year's Jets.

Today's question: What do you expect from Jets QB Aaron Rodgers in 2024?

EA: There are a lot of unknowns as Aaron Rodgers sets course on a path that never has been taken. We've never seen one of the most accomplished quarterbacks in NFL history attempt to return from an Achilles tendon injury, in a season where he'll turn 41 in December. What we do know is the Jets offense is not void of talent. Garrett Wilson and Breece Hall are young stars, plus the offensive line has better front-line options in LT Tyron Smith, an eight-time Pro Bowler who was a second-team All-Pro last season, LG John Simpson and RT Morgan Moses plus improved depth highlighted by impressive rookie Olu Fashanu. Working his way back from an ACL tear, Mike Williams is a big-bodied contested catcher whom teams must account for down the field. Tight end Tyler Conklin, coming off a career year, had a strong spring. Speaking of strong springs, I wouldn't doubt Rodgers. His arm is spry and his mind is sharp. He carries a legendary presence and D.J. Reed was talking about how No. 8 just elevates everyone around him. Rodgers told us that if he didn't think he could play at the highest level and be the best player in the league and lead the Jets to a Super Bowl, then he wouldn't be playing. He's not going to be an afterthought. If he lands somewhere between his down year of 2022 (64.6%, 3,695 yards, 26TDs-12INTs) and his MVP 2021 season (68.9%, 4,115 yards, 37TDs-4INTs), the Jets are going to be one of the best teams in the NFL and they're headed back to the postseason.

EG: It's hard to project what to expect from a 40-year-old quarterback coming off a major surgery, but it would be silly to bet against Aaron Rodgers. There's no doubt the four-time NFL MVP still has the ability to zip the ball on a string that leaves defenders confused and spectators amazed -- we caught a glimpse of it in OTAs. Rodgers also showed he still has the mobility to extend a play, which is something I'm looking for when the pads come on in training camp. With an improved offensive line and talent across the offense, I expect Rodgers to keep the interceptions low, like he always has. In terms of stats, Rodgers' 2022 season was widely considered a down year with 3,695 passing yards, 26 touchdowns and 12 interceptions while dealing with a thumb injury on this throwing hand. I think he'll have better numbers than that this coming season.

See photos of the Jets quarterbacks during the 2024 offseason program.

RL: Perfect health, for one thing, as we're sure A-Rod expects also. Then there are his stated top two goals for '24: win the Super Bowl and corral his fifth league MVP award, in that order. Neither one will be easy, for Rodgers or the Jets, but No. 8 & Co. in another month will start to show if they're up to those lofty goals. For Rodgers, I'm taking a metric approach to see what he might achieve this season compared to the four seasons he did win the MVP trophy, in 2011, '14, '20 and '21. In those four regular seasons, he averaged 355.5 completions in 520 attempts for 68.4% accuracy, 4,359.5 yards, 42 TDs and 5 INTs, all to the sweet tune of a 116.9 passer rating. I'm not going to say he'll reach all those milestones, but if he did, the completions, yards, TDs and rating would all be franchise records. And then there was the Packers' record in those four seasons: 52-11 for an .825 winning percentage. Rodgers doesn't even have to win the MVP or set franchise marks. If he can approach any or all of these numbers, he and the Jets should be in the dance.

CH: Looking back at the last three full seasons that Aaron Rodgers has played, two them were MVP, All-Pro and Pro-Bowl seasons. In 2021 Rodgers threw for 4,115 yards and 37 touchdowns, while in 2022, he threw for 3,695 yards and 26 touchdowns. Even though he turned 40 this past December and is coming off an Achilles tendon tear, I think he is still going to have one of his best years in the coming season. Rodgers is someone fueled by people doubting him and telling him he can't do something. Last season, for example, he rehabbed his injury at an incredibly fast rate, which could have permitted him to return to the field if the Jets were in playoff contention. I think he's excited about the external expectations. Having receivers like Garrett Wilson and Mike Williams, plus a running back like Breece Hall and tight ends like Tyler Conklin and Jeremy Ruckert, Rodgers is going to have the weapons at his disposal to be successful.

JP: When Aaron Rodgers makes his first start for the Green & White this coming season, he will join an exclusive group as the 10th quarterback in NFL history to start a game after age 40. Considering how few quarterbacks have played until 40, it can be difficult to predict what Rodgers will look like when he retakes the field. There have been multiple examples of quarterbacks who played well at 40 or older, like Rodgers' predecessor in Green Bay, Brett Favre, who threw for 33 touchdowns and 7 interceptions the season he turned 40 with the Vikings. There's also Tom Brady, who started 82 games past age 40 and won a Super Bowl at age 43. After seeing how Rodgers moved during OTAs, I expect him to resemble the gunslinger who won consecutive MVPs in 2020 and 2021. During offseason programming, Rodgers moved well in the pocket and was able to scramble on his recently repaired Achilles tendon, while his arm looked sharp as ever, spinning passes to every part of the field.

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