Gelb: Matt LaFleur Looks Like Pinocchio With Rodgers Comments

Matt LaFleur told Packers fans “a blatant lie” about Aaron Rodgers, Zach Gelb says, and he needs to stop putting his foot in his mouth

Zach Gelb
August 04, 2020 - 11:51 am

The Green Bay Packers, as we all know, traded up to take Jordan Love in the first round of April’s NFL Draft. Immediately the writing was on the wall: Aaron Rodgers’ days in Green Bay were numbered.

Well, Packers coach Matt LaFleur says Rodgers will be in Green Bay “for a really long time.” 

How long, you ask? 

“I don’t think anybody knows,” LaFleur said. “Nothing’s guaranteed in this league. But I feel so lucky to be able to work with him on a daily basis.”

Zach Gelb couldn’t believe his ears.

“A really long time?” he asked. “You know that they’re not going to give him another contract extension. So if you’re telling me he’s going to be there for a really long time, I would have said five more years. Does anyone believe right now that Aaron Rodgers is staying in Green Bay for five more years? No. Not when you take a quarterback in the draft. But it’s not just taking a quarterback; you traded up to get him in the first round when you didn’t have to. Who was the other team that was moving up?”

There wasn’t one.

“Matt LaFleur comes off to me here as Pinocchio,” Gelb said. “He’s trying to be Mr. Nice Guy. He’s trying to keep this civil. Aaron Rodgers has said all the right things. If I’m Matt LaFleur and I know these questions are going to come, I’m saying, ‘Guys, what happened in the draft happened in the draft, we’re moving on and we’re getting ready for Aaron to play football for this year in the 2020 season.’ You’ll still be asked about it, but at least you have an out. Go a little Belichick mode here. You keep on putting your own foot in your mouth when you go, ‘He’s going to be here for a really long time.’ What do you do when you make a quote like that, which is just a blatant lie – what are you even saying? ‘He’s going to be here for a long time, but I can’t tell you exactly how long.’”

Gelb would have had a simple follow-up question for LaFleur: Are you going to give Rodgers another contract?

“That’s when you would catch him right in the trap,” Gelb said. “For him to have the audacity after taking a quarterback in the first round when you have Rodgers, to then try to double down and say Rodgers is going to be here for a long time, he’s not going to be here for more than three to four more years. I don’t see him making it through all four years in Green Bay. . . . For you to tell your fans that he’s going to be here for a long time, none of your fans think that. All your fans have a brain right now and they’re laughing at you.”

They’re also probably angry.

“Instead of improving the defense, instead of going and getting Rodgers a legitimate No. 2 wide receiver,” Gelb said, “you guys drafted his replacement and basically told Rodgers, ‘Eh, the team wasn’t that great last year. They still went 13-3 and got to an NFC Championship, [but] it’s up to you to get us to the next step and take us to the Super Bowl. And if you don’t do that, you have a time clock that’s ticking, and it’s three to four years.’ 

“Does anyone think Rodgers is going to play more than four years in Green Bay?” Gelb asked. “I don’t. Is three to four years a very long time? Maybe in NFL years it is, but if you tell me that someone’s going to be there for a very long time, you’re telling me he’s getting another contract. Right now, I don’t see how there’s a way – unless they trade Jordan Love – where they’re not going to put Love on the field and just waste a first-round draft pick like that.

“You guys made your own bed here. Now you have to lie in it. But don’t tell us that Aaron Rodgers is going to be in Green Bay a long time – because he will finish his career elsewhere.”