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Aaron Rodgers embracing high expectations in New York, aims to build Jets offense 'the right way'

There's a different vibe around the New York Jets. Even in a league where last-place teams routinely become playoff teams the following year, this Jets-related excitement feels like it's at a level the franchise hasn't experienced in years.

And with that change, said Jets wide receiver Garrett Wilson, comes a different set of expectations -- even for a team that hasn't been to the playoffs in 12 seasons or won a championship in more than 50 years.

"Yeah, I ain't gonna fake it, we want to win the Super Bowl," Wilson said on Thursday; the first official day of Jets training camp. "It's OK to talk about it. If you want to go get that s---, do it."

A big reason for the newfound optimism clearly has to do with Aaron Rodgers' arrival. And Rodgers agrees with Wilson's approach to raising the expectations bar.

"We want everyone to jump on the wagon now," Rodgers told reporters on Thursday. "... High expectations are a good thing."

Now we find out how quickly Rodgers can adjust to his teammates and, no question, how the Jets assimilate with Rodgers. Along with the four-time MVP quarterback, the Jets brought in several of his former allies in Green Bay, namely WRs Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb, backup QB Tim Boyle and offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett.

Asked if this is the Packers' offense the Jets are now running under Hackett, Lazard said: "It's the Aaron Rodgers offense."

Jets head coach Robert Saleh believes his new quarterback might be uniquely skilled to get this team's ship in order.

"He's a coach that can still play football," Saleh said Thursday.

The teaching part won't all be on Rodgers, but he established a reputation of being a perfectionist in Green Bay -- occasionally displaying his anger when things didn't go according to plan. Rodgers didn't deny that's how he sometimes was with the Packers but insists he's mellowed with age and wisdom.

"Maybe earlier in my career I was a little more easily angered," he said. "Now I feel like I'm a little less triggered as I've gotten older."

Lazard indicated that Rodgers' teaching method since arriving at the Jets has been moving at a slower pace in terms of outlining his expectations for his offense. Will it end up looking like what Rodgers had with the Packers? That's tough to say. But at least one fascinating similarity has emerged.

Lazard admitted that Wilson, the 2022 Offensive Rookie of the Year, reminded him of Rodgers' favorite target in Green Bay in the latter years, Davante Adams – and not just because they shared the same uniform number, 17.

Asked if he agreed with Lazard's assessment, Rodgers paid proper deference to his former teammate, saying that Adams was in a class by himself. Even still, Rodgers didn't exactly shoot down the comparison.

"This 17 reminds me of that 17," he said.

With Rodgers in tow, offensive tackle Mekhi Becton reporting to camp in terrific shape and running back Breece Hall hitting 23 mph in his rehab from knee surgery, Day 1 of Jets camp felt like one big endorphin rush. Super Bowl talk was in the air.

But Rodgers also has been around enough to know that there's a similar vibe around two dozen or more teams right now, too. He knows they're still in a very early stage of putting the whole puzzle together.

"We're just building this thing right now," Rodgers said, "and I want to build it the right way."

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