Melvin Gordon is reportedly unhappy with his current contract situation. Should the Green Bay Packers consider trading for the disgruntled running back?
Running back is a dying breed in the NFL. The game has completely shifted to quarterbacks and receivers with the run game quickly falling out of favor. That makes it extremely difficult for elite running backs like Le’Veon Bell or Melvin Gordon to find contracts that tickle their fancy. It’s also not a huge surprise when someone like Gordon threatens to hold out if he doesn’t get a new contract extension. It’s also then natural to connect the Green Bay Packers to Gordon as a potential trading spot given the latter grew up in and attended college at Wisconsin.
Gordon has been a stud since being selected with the 15th overall pick of the 2015 NFL Draft. Although he’s only posted one 1,000 yard seasons, he’s found the end zone 28 times over the past three seasons and has established himself as a workhorse. That’s not a new label for Gordon who was the bell cow dating all the way back to his day sat the University of Wisconsin.
He also has a knack for finding the end zone, a skill that will be very useful for the Packers. Gordon has scored 28 rushing touchdowns and 10 more receiving touchdowns over the past three seasons. That’s impressive considering he was shut out during his rookie season.
At 26-years-old, Gordon is, perhaps, entering the back half of his prime. Thus is the career of an NFL running back where you shelf life is as short as ever. He’s also been injury prone throughout his career. Those are two red flags that will give any team pause when thinking about acquiring his services.
However, the Packers might want to think long and hard about trading for Gordon. New head coach Matt LaFleur loves to use his run game and could benefit tremendously from having one of the premiere talents at running back join his squad. Gordon could take a tremendous amount of pressure off Aaron Rodgers as well. An elite run game like the one the former Badger would bring, would allow Rodgers and the Packers get back to benefiting from the play action.
It would also continue a trend that general manager Brian Gutekunst has set during his two years in charge of the front office. Gutekunst continues to build the team to supplement Rodgers and his aging abilities. The defense has rightfully received a lot of attention and could potentially be the strongest of the three units next season. Gordon would help Green Bay continue to ask less of Rodgers as he gets into his late 30’s.
Gordon would also add another weapon to Green Bay’s depleted roster. Outside of Davante Adams, there aren’t any guaranteed threats on offense. Jimmy Graham is washed and had a poor first season with the Packers. There’s no telling if he’ll ever have another great season. The rest of the wide receivers behind Adams are question marks as well. Geronimo Allison got off to a great start last year, before missing most of the season with an injury. There are also three second-year receivers behind him on the depth chart.
The other biggest offensive weapon besides Adam might be the Packers best trade chip. Aaron Jones has flashed brilliance throughout his first two seasons, but has struggled to maintain his health at all. He’s still under team control for two more seasons and likely won’t be asking for a huge contract after his rookie deal. That could be exactly what the Chargers are looking for and give the Packers a good trade to build around.
Of course, they’ll have to add more. Potentially some draft picks. However, it would be worth it for Green Bay to give Rodgers and this offense another elite weapon to work with. It will give them the balance they’ve been searching for and help take pressure off Rodgers AND the defense. Maybe it’s time for Gordon to be reunited with his home state.