Rodgers as competitive as ever

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) – Aaron Rodgers dropped back and threw a high-arcing pass, the ball just skipping off the edge of a net stationed in the corner of the end zone about 20 yards away.

As the crowd swooned at Green Bay Packers minicamp Tuesday, the quarterback slapped his hands in disappointment as if he had just missed an open receiver for a touchdown at midseason. Going into his 10th year in the league, Rodgers is as competitive as ever in the offseason.

“It’s the opportunity to build team chemistry with the guys. It’s the challenge of beating up on Dom (Capers) and his defense,” said Rodgers, jokingly referring to the team’s defensive coordinator.

“And it’s proving yourself to young guys that haven’t seen you in action other than on TV over the years as I’ve become one of the older guys in the locker room,” Rodgers added. “But I have said that in the past – if I can’t be an almost-to-a-completely full offseason participator, then I’m going to move on. I plan on being here for a long time.”

Rodgers is a well-paid constant on an offense that undergoes some turnover each year given the front office’s “draft-and-develop” philosophy. This offseason, the receiving corps is in a bit younger with veteran James Jones gone and three rookies joining the team from the draft.

Jermichael Finley, the starter at tight end the past few seasons, remains a free agent after getting sidelined in October with a neck injury. Green Bay added tight end Richard Rodgers from the draft.

Rodgers, the Packers’ first-round pick in 2005, doesn’t think the added youth adds more work.

“It’s the same, it’s just different guys,” Rodgers said. “You know you look for ways to get to know your new teammates, you try to work on your timing in the spring and you get yourself and your offense ready for training camp.”

Rodgers did yoga in the offseason, which he has said helps with flexibility as he gets older. Rodgers, 30, had a left collarbone injury that knocked him out for much of the second half last season.

He stayed away from some heavy lifting, especially with his shoulders. Took rehab slow and feels good, he said earlier in the offseason.