Green Bay Packers star David Bakhtiari raised some eyebrows when he had said that the Packers, referring to the team he plays for as “they”, were rebuilding with Jordan Love after the trade of Aaron Rodgers.
This comment came as a stark contrast to Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst's view, as the executive said that “nothing is changing” going from Rodgers to Love.
Speaking to reporters at OTAs on Wednesday, Bakhtiari said he felt it was “disrespectful” to pretend a rebuild isn't happening going from a Hall of Famer in Rodgers to Love, per Rob Demovsky of ESPN.
“How I look at is, it's disrespectful to say you're not rebuilding off a Hall of Fame quarterback. It was disrespectful to say you weren't rebuilding off of Brett Favre when you moved to Aaron. No one knew Aaron and what he was going to be, so I'm not going to sit here and like pull back those words because that is, when you look at how it's been building, how we were chasing after it and the cap – there was a bunch of situations that can definitely allude to it – we have a young team.”
Bakhtiari made it clear that it would have been a slight to maintain such a stance years ago when the Packers were moving from Brett Favre to Rodgers.
Bakhtiari certainly has a point. After a Super Bowl win and 10 double-digit win seasons with Rodgers under center, it would be malpractice for the Packers to expect the same success instantly from Love, who has one career start to his name.
There were growing pains moving from Favre to Rodgers. The Packers should expect the same from Love.
But, as Bakhtiari wisely pointed out, it doesn't mean that the team will be losing, as he pointed to the Seattle Seahawks post-Russell Wilson as an example of a “rebuilding” team remaining in contention.
There's no doubt that moving from Rodgers to Love will be a wake-up call for Packers fans.
But they've been through this before.