Are Aaron Rodgers, Matt LaFleur Feuding Over Packers Offense?
Are Aaron Rodgers and Matt LaFleur already feuding over the Packers offense?
It sure seems that way.
LaFleur got very testy with reporters on Tuesday after one asked him about Rodgers’ freedom to audible in the team offense.
“You guys will just not stop with this audible thing,” he said. “It’s unbelievable. What do you want me to say?”
#Packers coach Matt LaFleur asked again about Aaron Rodgers’ freedom to audible at the line:
“You guys will just not stop with this audible thing. It’s unbelievable. What do you want me to say? … It’s comical to me.”
— Matt Schneidman (@mattschneidman) September 3, 2019
“It’s comical to me,” LaFleur added.
Where would the media get this insane idea that audibles might be a point of friction between Rodgers and LaFleur?
Well, from LaFleur – obviously.
“Aaron and I have had some good talks, and we’re going to have to talk a lot more — and one thing we have to work through is the audible thing,” he said back in June.
“We’re running a system I first picked up while working with Kyle (Shanahan) in Houston a decade ago, and we’ve never really had a quarterback who’s had complete freedom to change plays at the line, because that’s not really the way the offense is set up,” he added.
“But, I mean, this is Aaron Rodgers,” LaFleur continued.
“He’s had a lot of freedom to make those calls, and deservedly so. Now, how do we reconcile that, and get to a place where we put him in the best position to succeed?”
And Rodgers of course had an interesting response to that.
“It’s a conversation in progress,” he said.
“I don’t think you want to ask me to turn off 11 years (of recognizing defenses). We have a number of ‘check with mes’ and line-of-scrimmage stuff. It’s just the other stuff that really not many people in this league can do.
“That’s not like a humble brag or anything; that’s just a fact. There aren’t many people that can do at the line of scrimmage what I’ve done over the years,” Rodgers added.
Naturally, given that back and forth, people had some questions about how audibles would go in this offense going forward.
Apparently LaFleur disagrees, though.
This is going to be an interesting year for Rodgers.
Obviously all eyes will be on LaFleur as well, but nobody is really expecting much from him one way or the other.
But in Rodgers’ case, a narrative is starting to develop that maybe he isn’t quite as good as folks have made him out to be over the years.
And if Green Bay gets off to a bad start, or if Rodgers doesn’t quite gel with his new head coach, it will be interesting to see what the fallout is.
Rodgers is 35 years old and only has a handful of top-tier years left in him.
If the Packers need to pick between Rodgers and LaFleur, they will obviously choose the former over the latter.
But we are getting to the point where that will likely be the last time something like that happens.
If Rodgers can’t make it work over the next few seasons, regardless of whose fault it ultimately ends up being, his legacy will take a pretty big hit.
It should be an interesting season in Green Bay – stay tuned.