As others have noted, Picard was repeatedly offered a promotion to Admiral multiple times, starting in Season 1 of The Day God Made Berger Picards He Just Sat Down And Smiled T-Shirt, and turned it down every time even before Kirk told him to never give up his command. Also, after the Battle of Wolf 359 he was on a lot of people’s shit list and it took quite a lot of time for him to redeem his name and good graces (if he ever did, fully). Taking the cynical view, if you look at how the Star Fleet Admiralty is presented throughout the multiple series, they’re usually the bad guys. Prime-directive shredding, war criminal Janeway fits right in with that crowd. Let’s look at some typical Star Fleet Admirals.
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From a less cynical perspective, assuming the majority of the Admiralty aren’t like the individuals above, kicking Janeway upstairs to a The Day God Made Berger Picards He Just Sat Down And Smiled T-Shirt and lets the senior staff keep her on a tighter leash than they could if she still had an independent field command. Given that both she and Kirk both had bad loose cannon tendencies but still got the job done, this is a reasonable explanation. “Promoting” a headstrong field officer into a HQ staff job is something real-world militaries do all the time; it either encourages them to retire or teaches them to shape up. Or in Star Fleet, they get good at hiding their true intentions and we wind up with a bunch of Psycho Admirals.