Packers Part Ways with Aaron Jones, Sign Josh Jacobs in Bold 2024 Free Agency Move: A “Difficult Decision”

The Green Bay Packers have dramatically reshaped their backfield, marking a significant shift with the acquisition of former Raiders standout Josh Jacobs. This move coincided with the release of seasoned running back Aaron Jones, a decision that followed the breakdown of contract negotiations. Jones, who was poised to enter the final year of his contract in 2024 with a $12 million season salary, now finds himself parting ways with the team.

Packers General Manager Brian Gutekunst expressed his gratitude towards Jones for his dedication over seven seasons, acknowledging the difficulty of this decision. “Aaron’s contribution on the field, in the locker room, and within the community has left an indelible mark. He’s been a pivotal figure, beloved by many, and while it’s hard to see him go, we wish him and his family all the best in their future endeavors,” Gutekunst stated.

Jones, who joined the Packers as a fifth-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft from UTEP, quickly emerged as one of the league’s most dynamic running backs. His career highlights include a Pro Bowl selection in 2020 and sharing the lead for rushing touchdowns in 2019 with 16.

Packers Head Coach Matt LaFleur also shared his sentiments, highlighting the impact Jones had both on and off the field. “Aaron has been instrumental in establishing the winning culture here in Green Bay. His leadership and performance set a high standard. He’s been an exceptional player and an even better person. He will be greatly missed,” LaFleur remarked.

Despite battling injuries that limited his play to 11 games in 2023, Jones remained highly effective, surpassing 100 rushing yards in the last five games of the season, including two playoff appearances. Over his tenure with the Packers, Jones achieved over 1,000 scrimmage yards in four seasons and recorded double-digit touchdowns in three seasons. He concludes his time with the Packers ranking third in team history for rushing yards (5,940), fourth for rushing touchdowns (45), and 19th for receptions (272).

With Jones’ departure and Jacobs stepping in, questions arise about the future of A.J. Dillon, another key running back for the Packers who is currently a free agent. Should Dillon also leave, it would open up a significant number of carries from last season, with Jacobs poised to take the majority.

This reshuffling of the Packers’ backfield marks a new chapter for the team, as they look to build on their legacy with fresh talent and strategic moves.