Butler: Rodgers Knows He's The Quarterback – Not The Coach Or GM

LeRoy Butler doesn't buy that Aaron Rodgers is stewing about the Packers' clean-house offseason

Tiki and Tierney
April 18, 2018 - 6:15 pm

USA Today Images

It’s been an odd offseason for Aaron Rodgers. He lost his favorite receiver (Jordy Nelson) and his quarterbacks coach (Alex Van Pelt), and it doesn’t appear he had much input regarding those decisions.

On Tuesday, Rodgers said, simply, that he has to trust the process.

Hmm, is trouble brewing in Green Bay? Former Packers safety LeRoy Butler said no

“Everything that you know about Aaron, he will tell you,” Butler said on Tiki and Tierney. “That’s why when I hear things that people say . . . to me, that’s the head-scratcher part of it. He obviously would tell you what he thinks. After they lost to Atlanta, he said to Ted Thompson, ‘We got to go all in. We got to get free agents.’ Well, guess what happened? The next year, Ted Thompson signed more free agents than he’s ever done.

“I think the problem is people think Aaron wants control,” Butler continued. “Aaron is a great Hall of Fame quarterback – not a GM and not a coach. He knows his role and his place. He just doesn’t want people to think he’s causing a problem up there because ultimately they’re going to eventually give him an extension. They’re trying to say, ‘Well, he’s going to use that to get his extension’ – like there’s a problem in the front office.”

There may not be a problem in the front office, but there have certainly been a lot of changes.

“It’s a lot of moving parts,” Butler said. “You got a new offensive coordinator, you got a whole new defensive staff, you got all the people up top that’s new. You’re used to seeing new teammates like Jimmy Graham and these guys. You’re not used to seeing a bunch of different coaches and administrators. There’s going to be some moving parts. He just didn’t want to come in the first day of OTAs and be a distraction. Really, the bigger distraction would be Tom Brady not (coming) in. That’s a distraction.”

Still, why have a couple of former teammates taken shots at Rodgers after leaving Green Bay? Is he standoffish?

Butler laughed.

“You’re following Brett Favre – probably one of the most approachable guys ever in the history of the NFL,” Butler said. “So Aaron wanted to do things a little different. I just want to (have) a professional relationship with all the guys, and I just want to win for (my) love for you on the field. Off the field, I just want to earn your respect, but I may not go bowling with the guys. I may not go to the movies with the guys. I don’t have a wife and kids, so when the guys get with their families, he can’t just come and be a fifth wheel. So that’s where he gets kind of a bad rap. Aaron is still trying to figure out socially how to fit in. He just wants to play football.”

It seems odd, Brandon Tierney observed, that Rodgers is a private guy yet has such a public life, especially in terms of who he dates. Tierney wonders if Rodgers has outgrown Green Bay, but Butler doesn’t think he has – in part because Rodgers appreciates that the Packers showed faith in him. He was supposed to go No. 1 overall to San Francisco in 2005. Instead, the 49ers took Alex Smith.

Rodgers sat and waited, sat and waited, and slid to 24th overall.

Rodgers hasn’t forgotten that.

“He feels loyalty to the team, and he wants the team to feel the same way,” Butler said. “I don’t see nothing wrong with that. He just wants it done in a different way, and it’s a different regime now. He’s not dealing with Ted Thompson. If Ted Thompson was still here, Jordy Nelson would still be here.”