The Green Bay Packers are one of the most successful franchises in NFL history. Since their inception, they have won 13 division titles and appeared in 12 NFC championship games. One of the reasons for this success is that they have always been willing to take chances on players with talent but an uncertain future. This year, GM Brian Gutekunst took a chance on Aaron Rodgers, even though he had ruined his relationship with him by trading away his favorite player, Brett Favre.

The jen gutekunst is a football player. He plays as an offensive guard for the Green Bay Packers. Last season, he was part of a team that lost to Aaron Rodgers and the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC Championship game.

Going all the way back to the draft, the Green Bay Packers vs. Aaron Rodgers drama has dominated the NFL offseason. Rodgers material has been oversaturated in the sports world. The saga seems to have begun at the 2020 NFL Draft, when Green Bay moved up to acquire Utah State quarterback Jordan Love without telling Rodgers. It’s understandable that the three-time MVP would be bothered by this. However, pandering to a franchise quarterback is not part of General Manager Brian Gutekunst’s teambuilding plan. Gutekunst deserves credit for refusing to forsake an approach that other general managers must use, even if it did destroy his relationship with Rodgers.

Gutekunst believes that a quarterback should be surrounded by quality at all positions. He doesn’t start by looking for a franchise quarterback before building a team around him. This concept simplifies any quarterback’s job, making it simpler and less expensive for the club to locate a quarterback who fits its system, putting the team on the road to long-term success.

Because of his teambuilding approach, Packers GM Brian Gutekunst destroyed his connection with Aaron Rodgers.

Green Bay Packers' GM speaks to the media.

Green Bay Packers' GM speaks to the media. General Manager Brian Gutekunst of the Green Bay Packers speaks to the media. | Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

In Green Bay, Gutekunst’s decision to move up and pick Love ruffled a lot of feathers, but Rodgers’ were the most significant. The franchise’s MVP quarterback had no clue his eventual successor was being brought in by the front management. Although Gutekunst has said that trading up for the highest-rated player on their board was a spur-of-the-moment move, it remains a mystery why no one in the Packers’ selection room chose to inform Rodgers. In any case, a short 60-second phone call from someone in the room would have likely been helpful.

Gutekunst, though, has front-office experience dating back to the late 1990s, according to PackersNews.com. He doesn’t think it’s necessary to inform his quarterback about every personnel choice. In 1998, the 48-year-old started his scouting career with the Kansas City Chiefs, where he worked with Russ Ball, the Packers’ current salary-cap expert. He later joined Ron Wolf’s Green Bay Packers organization. Two of Wolf’s scouts, Ted Thompson of the Packers and John Schneider of the Seattle Seahawks, have gone on to become general managers. Gutekunst is the Wolf tree’s sixth General Manager.

Wolf’s take on quarterbacks was straightforward: you can’t have enough of them in the draft. What about his other philosophy? Create a draft and work on it.

Gutekunst’s plan is to assemble a group that will rally behind their starting quarterback.

Brian Gutekunst said of his draft class, “I like the long-term potential of a lot of those players.” Lots of rookies have shown up in camp, from Eric Stokes to Josh Myers and Royce Newman beginning, to Amari Rodgers and Kylil Hill receiving a lot of repetitions, to TJ Slaton making a sack against the Jets.

August 22, 2021 — Ryan Wood (@ByRyanWood)

Matt LaFleur, the offensive coordinator for the Tennessee Titans at the time, was appointed as Green Bay’s next head coach in 2019. LaFleur was coached by Kyle Shanahan of the San Francisco 49ers and Sean McVay of the Los Angeles Rams. Both teams have quarterback-friendly offenses that don’t depend on an MVP-caliber quarterback. With Jared Goff, McVay made it to the Super Bowl. With Jimmy Garoppolo, Shanahan did the same. Marcus Mariota, the Titans’ starting quarterback, was injured during his tenure as offensive coordinator. As a result, LaFleur changed his game plan on the fly, focusing his attack on the rushing game and all-pro running back Derrick Henry.

Gutekunst drafted cornerback Jaire Alexander, safety Danell Savage, and offensive tackle Elgton Jenkins in his first two rounds as Packers GM. From the beginning, all three have been starters. Rashan Gary, an edge rusher who is anticipated to play a major role in 2021, was also brought in by Gutey. Aaron Jones, one of the greatest running backs in the league, was drafted in the fifth round. The dearth of first-round wide outs selected in Green Bay has long enraged fans; indeed, even Davante Adams was a second-round selection. Marquez Valdes-Scantling was drafted in the fifth round. Undrafted free agent Allen Lazard was signed. Tight end Robert Tonyan, one of Rodgers’ favorite targets, was an undrafted free agent and a wide receiver in college.

When he does enter the free agency pool, the Packers end up with current starters like Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, and Adrian Amos.

The common thread here is that Green Bay’s general manager has added depth to both lines of scrimmage and discovered starters in the late rounds and free agency. He hasn’t squandered draft capital or money on passing-game weapons, yet his club has advanced to two NFC Championship Games in a row. Gutekunst’s approach for creating a team is working.

Gutekunst is laying the groundwork for the Packers’ long-term success.

After this season, Rodgers is all but done. Assuming Love takes over as the starter, he has a couple of advantages as a first-year starter:

  • An offensive line with depth and a variety of options All-Pros
  • A running back for a franchise
  • A large, deep receiver chamber
  • A productive tight end to begin with
  • One of the strongest secondary defenses in the game.
  • An offensive scheme intended to make the work of the quarterback as simple as possible.

Patrick Mahomes may not be available to Green Bay for the next ten years. There’s a good chance it won’t have Rodgers for another. However, Gutekunst’s team-building approach — using the draft, a competent head coach and a strong system, and a few but successful excursions into free agency — has the club well-positioned for the long haul.

Pro-Football-Reference provides draft history.

RELATED: Davante Adams is a better fit for the Packers than Aaron Rodgers

The aaron rodgers contract is a story about how the Green Bay Packers GM Brian Gutekunst was able to keep Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay despite ruining his relationship with him.

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