The Packers have insisted on keeping Aaron Rodgers around for at least 2021 for one very simple reason. His replacement isn’t ready.

Jordan Love, the quarterback for whom the Packers traded up in the first round of the 2020 draft, hasn’t gotten the reps necessary to prepare to play. With no preseason last year due to the pandemic, Love has never taken a snap in any NFL game. The Packers simply couldn’t have made him the quarterback this year without assuming a significant risk that he’ll be overwhelmed and, in turn, his performance will be underwhelming.

If Love were ready to go, Rodgers undoubtedly would be gone. The philosophical divide between Rodgers and the Green Bay front office remains, with the team viewing Rodgers as a mere employee and Rodgers believing he has earned greater consideration than that. Gutekunst disputed on Thursday the suggestion that the team doesn’t treat players well — less than 24 hours after Rodgers took the podium with the smattering of Gs behind it to complain about the manner in which the front office treats players.