Packer Aaron Rodgers, northern California native, grew up a 49ers fan

    “They won’t be as disappointed as the 49ers that they didn’t draft me.”

    Northern California native Aaron Rodgers had just been asked in 2005 how disappointed he was that his childhood interest, the 49ers, hadn’t picked him in the nfl draft. san francisco had the no. 1 overall pick in 2005, and Rodgers, a product of nearby University of California, was one of the top contenders to land that coveted spot.

    Instead, the 49ers drafted alex smith from utah, and rodgers had to wait hours before hearing his name. he then he delivered the joke that he will live forever.

    rodgers fell to no. 24, where the green bay packers and first-year general manager ted thompson were waiting to take a franchise-defining risk and select a quarterback despite having a capable hall of famer in that spot at the list at brett favre.

    As Rodgers heads into what could be his last postseason with the Packers, after a tenure that included one Super Bowl, (at least) three MVPs and (at least) five NFC Championship Games (six if we counted 2007 when he wasn’t the starter), it’s fitting that he gets one more chance on the 49ers, a team that is 3-0 in the playoffs over the rodgers-led Packers teams, but also the team that left Pass up the opportunity to short-circuit his Packers legacy before it even began.

    Before Green Bay, Rodgers’ entire career had been in 49ers country

    Rodgers was born in Chico, California, approximately 165 miles north of San Francisco. He played several sports at Pleasant Valley High School, then played two years at nearby Butte Community College when he didn’t receive a Division I scholarship offer.

    Chico residents are forced to choose quite regularly between hometown interest and the Rodgers when the 49ers and Packers meet.

    After Butte, Rodgers was given the chance to play quarterback at Cal, across the bay from San Francisco and a little north of Oakland in Berkeley. He became a top-tier NFL prospect under the tutelage of quarterback guru Jeff Tedford.

    But whether it’s because of Tedford’s reputation for developing quarterbacks who can only play within a certain system, Rodgers’ temperament, or some other factor, the 49ers chose to pick the other top quarterback prospect in the draft. 2005 with the first selection.


    rodgers admitted he dreamed of playing for the 49ers as a kid. Could it also have happened this offseason, when Rodgers and the Packers were at loggerheads and it was unclear whether Rodgers would be the Packers’ quarterback in 2021?

    After the news that Rodgers was unhappy and planned not to return to the Packers in April 2021, the NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero tweeted that the 49ers had contacted the Packers to negotiate with Rodgers, although the investigation went nowhere. .

    alex smith found himself in a very different situation than rodgers

    smith started nine games that year, but was not immediately effective and struggled with injuries, something that would haunt him throughout his career. The 49ers didn’t even have a winning record under Smith until 2011, after the Packers and Rodgers claimed a Super Bowl title. In fact, the 49ers didn’t really succeed until Colin Kaepernick replaced Smith: Kaepernick (born in Milwaukee, by the way) was the key component that helped San Francisco beat the Packers in the 2012 and 2013 playoffs, with the previous season. ending it with an appearance in the super bowl.

    Not to say that Rodgers, who served as Favre’s backup for three seasons and didn’t exactly set the world on fire in his limited opportunities during those early years, would have thrived under the circumstances of playing now that Smith faced.

    A preliminary report delving into Packers culture reported that Rodgers always opposed coach Mike McCarthy that the 49ers franchise chose Smith; McCarthy was San Francisco’s offensive coordinator at the time of the decision. McCarthy became the Packers’ head coach the following season, in 2006.

    The connections between the 49ers and the Packers are somewhat disturbing

    Both franchises have been fortunate to once again have Hall of Fame quarterbacks. Rodgers witnessed the Joe Montana and Steve Young eras before completing the back half of the Favre/Rodgers era at Green Bay.

    “That was really important to me, as far as setting dreams and goals, being able to see the 49ers teams of the late ’80s and early ’90s, which were obviously fantastic,” Rodgers told Mike tyric from nbc “i remember sitting down, having a big super bowl party and watching (joe montana) and ‘the drive.’ then thinking, even at 5 or 6, ‘that’s what i want to do. i want to go out there and be like this ‘. “

    It’s not just the Hall of Fame quarterback tandem or the Kaepernick or Rodgers connections that bind the 49ers and Packers.

    when the teams met in the nfc championship game after the 2019 season, new packers coach matt lafleur clashed with his brother mike lafleur who was the passing game coordinator for the packers 49ers at the time. Mike Lafleur is now the offensive coordinator for the New York Jets.

    The last two Packers Super Bowls have had head coaches with ties to the 49ers. McCarthy, of course, led the Packers to the championship after the 2010 season, and Mike Holmgren, who led the Packers to the Super Bowl crown after the 1996 season, had also been an offensive coordinator in San Francisco and was part of two super bowls bowls there.

    jared goff, another bay area native who became the first overall pick in the draft 10 years later, said he was upset at age 10 when the 49ers didn’t take rodgers in first overall. The Packers got the better of Goff in the playoffs in 2020 when he was the Los Angeles Rams quarterback; he is now with the lions and split two games against green bay this season.

    rodgers vs. 49ers

    Rodgers is 6-6 overall against San Francisco since taking over the Packers helm, including a 3-2 mark at Lambeau and a 1-1 record against San Francisco with Smith wearing for San Francisco.

    But that ledger includes going 0-3 in the playoffs, and only one of those games has come close. In the 2013 postseason, Phil Dawson’s field goal as time expired led the 49ers to a 23-20 win at Lambeau in the wild-card round.

    Still, the Packers have beaten the 49ers on the road in each of the past two regular seasons, including a 30-28 thriller earlier this year. Rodgers was shown celebrating on the sidelines in excitement after Mason Crosby’s game-winning field goal.

    more:The packers’ joyful celebration shows the special nature of this comeback win over the 49ers

    more:a recap of the packers 20 playoff games during the aaron rodgers era

    more:the story of the packers vs. The 49ers feature many memorable games from the NFL regular season and playoffs in the Super Bowl era. here’s a look at 11 of them.

    jr radcliffe can be reached at (262) 361-9141 or follow him on twitter at @jrradcliffe.

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