Videos by OutKick
On Wednesday, the New York Jets introduced their new quarterback to the media. Owner Woody Johnson opening with a statement, as did Aaron Rodgers. Then Rodgers, along with head coach Robert Saleh and GM Joe Douglas, took questions from reporters. Though, none of the questions went to anyone but Rodgers.
They held their press conference on the day that the trade with the Green Bay Packers became official.
Top takeaways from Aaron Rodgers’ introductory press conference with the New York Jets
Aaron Rodgers starts with some humor to show he can handle New York media
After owner Woody Johnson gave his statement, he walked off the stage and threw it to Rodgers. Rodgers, obviously trying to break the tension, joked that Johnson was supposed to shake his hand.
So, Johnson quickly headed over and the two shook hands. The media got a good laugh from the exchange.
Rodgers also clearly tried to ingratiate himself with the New York media. There’s been a lot of chatter about how the media — mostly left-leaning — might treat Rodgers who speaks out on issues that they might disagree with.
But he said “hello” to every reporter who asked a question and called them by their first name. Don’t think I didn’t notice what you were trying to do, Aaron.
“I believe in this team.”
Rodgers talked a lot about why he chose the New York Jets, with a big focus on the team being built for a Super Bowl run. He mentioned the team’s drafting ability, specifically getting both the Offensive and Defensive Rookies of the Year (Garrett Wilson, Sauce Gardner) in last year’s draft.
“I’m an old guy, so I want to be part of a team that can win it all,” Rodgers said. “I believe this is a place where we can get that done.”
Rodgers shouts out “Fireman Ed”
Another big aspect of the press conference was Rodgers’ heavy praise for the New Jets fan base. Again, pandering to the media and fans — stop being so obvious, Aaron!
The funny part is that he actually named “Fireman Ed” specifically. Ed is no longer leading the J-E-T-S chants, but clearly made an impression on Rodgers.
Or, Rodgers just wanted to let the fans know that he’s paying attention. Though, naming the chant leader who “retired” over seven years ago doesn’t exactly say “I know the fans well.”
Rodgers non-committal about future, notes playing until 40 was always the goal
A few of the questions focused on Rodgers’ future beyond this season. Obviously, Rodgers didn’t tip his hand. How else is he going to milk the “will he retire?” talk next offseason?
He said he’s only focused on this season. But he did let in a little hint, saying that his goal has always been to play football “into his 40s.” Then he noted that he turns 40 in December.
He also said he prides himself in how he takes care of his body, which includes copious amounts of mind-altering drugs.
“I’m not here to be a savior”
One of the most-shared quotes from the press conference is Rodgers saying that the Jets only Super Bowl trophy — won in 1969 — was looking “lonely” in the trophy case.
In true Rodgers fashion, though, he later said he isn’t in New York “to be a savior.”
You’re sending mixed messages, Aaron! That’s his specialty though. Remember when he was “90% retired”? Twice?
“12 is Broadway Joe and I didn’t even want to go down that path”
Rodgers already announced that he’s going back to his college number at Cal, #8.
He didn’t want to wear #12 for the Jets because, obviously, that was Joe Namath’s number.
Namath gave Rodgers permission to wear the jersey — which is retired by the team — but Rodgers declined.
“To me, 12 is Broadway Joe and I didn’t want to even go down that path,” Rodgers said. “So I’m excited to go back to my college number.
Super Bowls aren’t won in April
Overall, Rodgers said all the right things. He made jokes, had the media laughing, seemed laid-back and in-control.
He was his typical self. Surely, this is an exciting day for Jets fans.
But unless he delivers in December, January and — especially — February, none of it really matters.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @RealDanZak