Report: Broncos wanted Aaron Rodgers all along, settled for Russell Wilson

Dec 1, 2022, 7:19 PM | Updated: 7:38 pm

Someone is finally saying it.

The Broncos wanted Aaron Rodgers to be the next QB of the franchise, and settled for Russell Wilson.

In a new report published by ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler on Thursday, there’s a peek behind the curtain about what Denver GM George Paton was thinking this offseason.

“Multiple league execs are still convinced that Rodgers was the (Broncos) first choice, before the four-time MVP re-signed with Green Bay,” Fowler writes.

It makes sense. Denver hired head coach Nathaniel Hackett after an exhaustive search, one that perplexed a few folks. It’s not that Hackett wasn’t qualified for the job, he had been an offensive coordinator in multiple places, but rather his relationship with Rodgers being a potential key. Hackett was Green Bay’s OC from 2019-2021.

“Aaron Rodgers, I could understand giving up that sort of package, but not Russell,” a high-ranking NFC exec told Fowler. “Denver didn’t have any familiarity with the player or his fit in the system, and he’s declining as an aging, smaller quarterback.”

That decline for Wilson has been evident and painful. The Broncos sit at just 3-8 on the season and Wilson has thrown only eight touchdown passes to go along with five interceptions. He’s played in 10 of 11 games for Denver and is averaging 236.9 yards in the air per contest. He’s been sacked 35 times.

Meanwhile, it’s not like Rodgers and the Packers have had a lot of success. Their record is just 4-8 and they’ll almost assuredly miss the NFC playoffs. It could be the final year with Green Bay for Rodgers, or maybe of his entire NFL career.

He left Sunday’s game against the Eagles with an injury, and management may see what backup Jordan Love can offer in a handful of games the rest of the way.

Would Rodgers have been better in Denver? Maybe, maybe not. But the Wilson experiment isn’t working right now, at all. And fans can only guess how it would’ve look with Rodgers.

We know this: it probably wouldn’t have gone any worse.



Broncos QB Bo Nix Broncos-Seahawks...

Andrew Mason

Three things to know about Broncos-Seahawks in Week 1

The Broncos-Seahawks game in Week 1 could see Bo Nix's regular-season debut. But would that be the best situation for the first-round pick?

4 hours ago

Broncos throwback uniforms...

Andrew Mason

The three best games for the Broncos to wear throwback uniforms

The Broncos can wear their throwback-style uniforms up to twice this season ... so, which games are the best candidates?

17 hours ago

Broncos QB Bo Nix...

James Merilatt

Broncos schedule provides a perfect place for Bo Nix’s first start

Putting a young quarterback in a position to succeed is important, which is why the Broncos need to be calculated when it comes to Bo Nix

1 day ago

Sean Payton Broncos Power Rankings...

Will Petersen

NFL Power Rankings have Broncos as the 31st team in the league

ESPN placed the Broncos as the 31st best team in the league in their new Power Rankings, only ahead of the Panthers to avoid being dead last

1 day ago

Broncos schedule helmet...

Andrew Mason

The Broncos schedule is out … now, what’s going to happen?

Now that the Broncos schedule for the 2024 season is out ... what's going to happen? Andrew Mason takes a shot at predicting.

2 days ago

Las Vegas Grand Prix...

James Merilatt

Five road trips that every Broncos fan should consider in 2024

Year two of the Sean Payton era features a lot of notable road games, as Denver travels to some great destinations, making for prime roadies

2 days ago

Report: Broncos wanted Aaron Rodgers all along, settled for Russell Wilson