FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — If quarterback Aaron Rodgers lands with the New York Jets in a trade, he would like to be surrounded by some of his BFFs.
The Green Bay Packers‘ star has supplied the Jets with a wish list of free agents he’d like them to pursue and acquire, and it includes Odell Beckham Jr., sources told ESPN’s Dianna Russini.
Predictably, the list also has three former Packers teammates: wide receivers Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb and tight end Marcedes Lewis.
Lazard agreed to a four-year, $44 million contract with the Jets on Tuesday, a source told ESPN, confirming a report by theScore.com. The two sides still are working through final details of the contract.
The Jets have expressed interest in the other two Packers free agents, sources told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. It is not known whether they have reached out to Beckham, but they were represented at his open workout for NFL teams last week in Arizona. Beckham, who has recovered from major knee surgery, is looking for a new team.
Rodgers has never played with Beckham, but they’re friends, and the quarterback has said in the past that he’d like to team up with him at some point.
The Jets have three returning starters at receiver: Garrett Wilson, Elijah Moore and Corey Davis. Wilson was the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. Davis could be expendable, as he is due to make a non-guaranteed $10.5 million in the final year of his contract. The Jets also have former second-round pick Denzel Mims.
New Jets offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett was the Packers’ coordinator for three years (2019-21), so he got a chance to coach Lazard and Lewis during that stretch. He had Cobb for only one year in Green Bay (2021). Going way back, he was on the Jacksonville Jaguars‘ staff in 2016-17 during Lewis’ long tenure on the team.
The Jets might see Lazard as a replacement for Davis, but Rodgers’ influence seems to be driving the interest in Cobb, 32, and Lewis, 38. The Jets have good depth at tight end and don’t need any reinforcements, but Rodgers has spoken highly of Lewis.
“A guy like Marcedes Lewis, he’s an important cog in the wheel of the locker room and the momentum of the team,” Rodgers said during an appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” in January. “That’s a guy I want to finish my career with. If I’m playing, I want that guy next to me.
“I want the Randall Cobbs of the world — if he wants to keep playing — in my locker room. Guys you can win it with. Allen Lazard, Bobby Tonyan, David Bakhtiari. There’s a lot of interesting names that we’ll see if there’s desire to re-sign certain guys that are glue guys in the locker room, will be an interesting conversation to be had.”
The Jets-Packers trade still isn’t finalized. The two teams and Rodgers remain in contact, sources said, as they try to work through the final stages of a potential deal. Rodgers said over the weekend that there would be a resolution soon.
Rodgers will appear on “The Pat McAfee Show” at 1 p.m. ET on Wednesday, possibly with news on his playing future.