The New York Jets were supposed to be prepping for a Super Bow right around this time with Aaron Rodgers set to face Brock Purdy and the 49ers.
They were the talk of the offseason — and both local and national media — were buying in. Many truly believed the 2023 Jets would contend for a Super Bowl in the AFC.
Rodgers was the missing piece. The Jets had one of the top defenses in the NFL, an offensive roster loaded with young talent at key skill positions and a solid coaching staff that included Rodgers’ former OC in Green Bay.
The Jets signed Dalvin Cook despite having a bevy of talent in the backfield. They quite literally, were going all-in for 2023.
And just a few minutes later, everything changed. On his fourth snap as the Jets savior Rodgers had his third dropback and was pressured just as he was the first two. This time, Bills pass rusher Leonard Floyd got a hold of him and wrestled him down with Rodgers’ left foot catching on the turf and his Achilles tearing in the process.
The four-time Most Valuable Player initially got up to his feet and then sat back down.
Rodgers was carted to the locker room after a trip inside the blue medical tent. He was shown in a walking boot on his way to X-rays on the broadcast. Ultimately Rodgers was diagnosed with a torn Achilles, and despite multiple announcements that he had completed a record fast recovery and could have potentially played late last season, the Jets were out of the postseason and weren’t going to risk their chances for 2024.
New York Jets QB Aaron Rodgers Shares Unbelievable Injury Update
Rodgers and the Jets are entering the 2024 season with more pressure than ever. The coaching staff was ripped apart for not having a contingency plan if their franchise star QB got injured, and many believed they threw in the towel after the Week 1 catastrophe.
Reports have noted head coach Robert Saleh — who will absolutely be on the hot seat next season — has made minor staff moves already but kept it quiet.
In the end, the New York Jets will go as far as Aaron Rodgers takes them.
On a recent podcast with Joe Rogan, the Jets QB provided an update on his recovery from the injury, noting his Achilles “feels good,” and that he’s able to do everything except sprint at top speed.
Rodgers is five months removed from surgery to repair his Achilles, putting him on the expected timetable for a return in September in the Jets’ season opener
He was brought in to be the final piece on a talented team that needed a quarterback to take them to the next level, and that remains the goal in 2024 and beyond.
Rodgers is now 40 years old, and he’ll need to fight “Father Time” if he has any chance to win a second Super Bowl title.
It’s a tall task for any NFL player to return from a torn Achilles, and especially difficult for one nearing the end of his career.
Aaron Rodgers has made a name for himself by doing the unexpected, and he’ll need to do it one more time to get back to full strength for the New York Jets next season. Only time will tell to see if he’s the old Rodgers who won back-to-back MVPs.