Over 200 players have agreed to terms on contracts this offseason, but since the legal tampering period opened up on Monday, none of them have been with the Green Bay Packers. In fact, the Green Bay Packers are one of only three teams who haven’t made an outside addition at this point.
As we are all aware, the Packers have limited spending power this offseason, and it took a flurry of moves over the last week just to get them under the league’s $182.5 million salary cap. While I’m not sure that any of us know what to expect from Brian Gutekunst and Co. moving forward, what’s quite clear is that Gutey wanted to keep this Super Bowl-caliber roster together for one more run.
This Green Bay Packers team didn’t lose the NFC Championship Game because of a lack of talent; they had plenty, but they, unfortunately, were without their All-Pro left tackle, and several key players had poor performances. However, the roster was plenty good enough to win–sometimes you just don’t.
So Gutekunst did what he had to do to keep this roster together for the most part. Kenny Clark and David Bakhtiari received extensions; Adrian Amos, Billy Turner, and Za’Darius Smith restructured their deals, and Preston Smith took a pay cut. They also re-signed Aaron Jones and tendered contracts to Robert Tonyan and Chandon Sullivan.
Although it’s not exciting, these were the “big” offseason moves for the Green Bay Packers, and it’s a big reason for their inactivity in free agency. According to Tom Silverstein, the Packers have pushed almost $24 million in cap charges from 2021 to the 2022 season.
Now, with that said, I still expect them to make an addition or two in free agency, but as has been reported, it’s not going to be anything flashy. And considering that Green Bay is less than one million below the cap, according to Silverstein’s calculations, either an extension for Davante Adams and/or restructuring Aaron Rodgers’ base salary will have to take place to create more cap space.
So at this stage of the free agency game, a number of names are no longer options, but there are still quite a few players available that could come in and make an impact. With that said, are all of these players going to be on the Green Bay Packers’ radar? Not at all. But they are some of the best players still on the open market, according to Pro Football Focus.
Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Options
The Packers had the top-scoring offense in the NFL last season and are returning their top-3 receivers. However, it’s never a bad idea to give Aaron Rodgers and Matt LaFleur another option–especially with some uncertainty around who is going to be the fourth wide receiver this season and the fact that Green Bay currently has no receivers under contract for the 2022 season.
Having said that, I fully expect them to address this need in the draft rather than free agency. Once again, it is another very deep class.
Kenny Golladay, TY Hilton, Sammy Watkins, Adam Humphries, Danny Amendola, Josh Reynolds, DeSean Jackson, Kenny Stills, Willie Snead, Dede Westbrook, and Alshon Jeffrey.
Green Bay Packers Offensive Line Options
After having the top offensive line unit by several metrics in 2021, there are some unknowns entering the new season with Corey Linsley in Los Angeles, along with not knowing when David Bakhtiari will be back.
On Monday, Tom Pelissero reported that he expects the Packers to address the offensive line in free agency, and since then, they’ve been linked to interior players David Andrews and Brett Jones. Although I wouldn’t rule out them addressing tackle either.
Mitchell Schwartz, Russell Okung, Alejandro Villanueva, Brett Jones, Rick Wagner, Bobby Massie, Austin Reiter, Eric Fisher, Cameron Fleming, James Carpenter, Elijah Wilkinson, Oday Aboushi, DJ Fluker, and John Miller
Green Bay Packers Interior Defensive Line Options
After not addressing the need in 2020, doing so this offseason is a must. Kenny Clark still needs more consistent help inside, and overall they lack depth at the position. Currently, Clark, Dean Lowry, Kingsley Keke, Anthony Rush, and Willington Previlon as the only on the roster options–with Rush and Previlon primarily being practice squad players last season.
This is another position that the Green Bay Packers have been “active in, according to ESPN’s Rob Demovsky.
Geno Atkins, Jurrell Casey, Malik Jackson, Ndamukong Suh, Sheldon Rankins, Kawann Short, Lawrence Guy, Steve McLendon, and Corey Peters.
Green Bay Packers Cornerback Options
In that same report that Demovsky named the interior defensive line as a position that the Green Bay Packers were interested in, he also mentioned cornerback as well. This shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone — like at all — as it is currently the team’s biggest need. Jaire Alexander needs a running mate, and some added competition in the slot for Chandon Sullivan would be ideal.
However, according to a source from Bill Huber of Sports Illustrated, the cornerback market — at least for a significant upgrade — has been out of the Green Bay Packers’ price range for the most part. Although some good news is that there are still quite a few players still available.
Richard Sherman, Kyle Fuller, Adoree Jackson, Malcolm Butler, Brian Poole, Quinton Dunbar, Xavier Rhodes, Nickell Robey-Coleman, Mackensie Alexander, K’Waun Williams, Gareon Conley, Bashaud Breeland, Casey Hayward, AJ Bouye, Rasul Douglas, Jason McCourty, Darqueze Dennard, DJ Hayden, Kevin King, Corn Elder, and TJ Carrie.