FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Broad receiver Allen Lazard stated he signed with the New York Jets due to the “brilliant lights” of town and a powerful affinity for his new offensive coordinator. Then, after all, there’s the life-changing cash. And one different factor, too.
“Clearly, standing right here at present, it feels good figuring out that 12’s going to be my quarterback once more,” Lazard stated Friday on a Zoom name with reporters.
Lazard spoke of former Green Bay Packers teammate Aaron Rodgers as if their reunion is a accomplished deal. Not fairly, because the Jets and Packers are negotiating commerce compensation and a restructured contract. On Wednesday, Rodgers stated his “intention” is to play for the Jets in 2023. A commerce is predicted to occur, although nothing is imminent.
After 5 seasons with the Packers, Lazard, 27, signed a four-year, $44 million contract with the Jets. He stated he talked not too long ago with Rodgers at a health facility in Los Angeles, the place they each prepare within the offseason. Lazard indicated his choice to play for the Jets wasn’t contingent upon Rodgers deciding the identical.
“As a large receiver, one of the best relationship you possibly can have is with the quarterback and the connection I’ve with him has been phenomenal,” Lazard stated. “Clearly, there’s an inclination that he is coming right here, however … after the season, after the final sport, within the locker room, I discussed how I’ve to fret about myself and handle what’s greatest for me and I can not fear about different folks.
“Me and my choice coming right here was purely primarily based off that and ensuring that I am doing what’s greatest for my profession. Clearly, him being right here, it positively helps the complete group to have the ability to take that subsequent step, make a deep playoff run and go win that Lombardi Trophy.”
Lazard’s selection will make Rodgers completely satisfied.
Throughout discussions final week with the Jets, he gave a glowing advice of Lazard, who set profession highs final season with 60 receptions and 788 yards. Talking Wednesday on “The Pat McAfee Present,” Rodgers stated, “I feel, objectively, lots of people can take a look at Allen Lazard and go, ‘He is a extremely good participant. We might like to have him on our group.'”
The Jets now have 4, maybe 5 starting-caliber receivers in Lazard, Garrett Wilson, Corey Davis, Elijah Moore and Denzel Mims. Davis, who has an $11.2 million cap cost, could possibly be expendable.
Assuming Rodgers is the quarterback, Lazard likes the Jets’ possibilities within the AFC. Requested in regards to the group’s ceiling, he stated, “With Aaron Rodgers at quarterback, the potential for wins is all the time a factor. With that being stated, it is actually the Tremendous Bowl.”
Lazard has come a great distance from being undrafted out of Iowa State, getting reduce by the Jacksonville Jaguars and even getting reduce by the Packers. He ultimately established himself, with some assist from Rodgers.
“He actually put his arm round me and he is an enormous motive why I am right here at present,” he stated. “I can not deny that. He stood up on a desk for me throughout coaching camp once I in all probability did not need to make the roster — a minimum of within the entrance workplace’s eyes. He known as for me to be within the sport he relied on me and in plenty of heavy-pressure conditions and all the time believed in me.”
Lazard additionally credited offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, who served in the identical place for the Packers from 2019 to 2021. Hackett additionally was on the Jaguars’ employees throughout Lazard’s time there.
“He is one of the best trainer I’ve had in my life,” Lazard stated. “And that goes from faculty to soccer.”