Aaron Rodgers claps back at NFL’s ‘Jets kind of owe us one’ comment

Aaron Rodgers is ready.

The Jets quarterback told Adam Schein on Mad Dog Sports Radio this week that he isn’t worried about New York’s tough opening slate to the 2024 season and he didn’t care when an NFL executive said the team owes the league following his Week 1 Achilles injury.

“I love it. We are must-watch TV and that’s pretty obvious. Everybody knows that,” Rodgers said. “Whether you love or hate me, people want to see me play. they enjoy watching me play. We are a team to watch this year. Not surprising. I love it. Make it difficult. Let’s see how we stack up against one of the top teams in the league. 

“No excuses. Three days in 10 days. We’ll be ready to rock and roll. I’m not worried about it.”

The Jets play six primetime games in the first 11 weeks — the most in NFL history — which includes, as Rodgers mentioned, three games in the first 10 days of the 2024 season. They’ll play twice on Sunday night, Monday night and Thursday night over their first half of the season before a Week 12 bye (which was by design). Wedged in between is a game in London against the Vikings in Week 5.

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Rodgers’ return is a major storyline for the Jets’ season and was a big reason why the NFL tapped Gang Green for so many primetime games. The league featured the Jets a lot in 2023 as well, but Rodgers only played four snaps in Week 1 before he tore his Achilles.

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NFL vice president of broadcast planning Mike North later said the Jets “kind of owe us one” because of how bad New York’s season ended up following Rodgers’ early exit. North backtracked from that comment, though, and explained that the Jets really owe the fans a better season.

None of that matters to Rodgers. He said he’s focused on the games ahead, proving to the NFL that they made the right choice in featuring the Jets and crafting a new narrative for New York this year.

“As far as us owing people? That’s fine. Whatever. I don’t care what anything has to say about that,” Rodgers said. “It was [expletive] for me. It was rough for the league. I get it. Me only playing a few plays last year — That’s going to be different this year.

“What happens when we pay them back with six great primetime games? What’re they going to say next year?”

The Jets made every effort this offseason to add more talent to the offense around Rodgers. General manager Joe Douglas signed, traded for and drafted a total of four new offensive linemen. He also signed veteran wideout Mike Williams and drafted Rodgers’ favorite pass-catcher from the 2024 class, Malachi Corley.

Will that be enough to end the Jets’ 13-season playoff drought? America will get a front-row seat to that show in the first 11 weeks of the season. Now it’s on Rodgers and the rest of the team to live up to the billing.

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