B.J. Raji received a lot of attention on Sunday morning when a column by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Bob McGinn alleged that the Packers defensive lineman spurned an offer of a contract extension by the organization averaging $8 million per season.
The consensus among NFL insiders interviewed for the column and reaction from readers seems to be feelings of disbelief that Raji would pass up such an offer.
In an league that has seen few blockbuster deals signed in free agency during an era of a flat salary cap, the proposition presented to Raji appears to be very generous, perhaps one he won't find on the open market.
Reactions of incredulity have only intensified in the aftermath of the Packers' 27-13 loss on Sunday to the New York Giants, a game in which Raji did little to help the team's overall poor defensive effort.
Raji graded out the lowest of any defensive player in the Packers' most-recent loss, according to ProFootballFocus.com, not being credited with as much as a single tackle in 44 snaps.
This season, Raji ranks 38th among all NFL ends who play in a 3-4 defensive system and participate in at least 25 percent of their team's snaps, an incredibly low ranking made even worse by the high expectations among the public placed upon a former first round draft pick.
The last time Raji recorded a sack was in Week 12 of the 2011 season.
Raji has to look no further than the situation that played out this past offseason with former Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings for an offer of $8 million per season that was later rescinded.
Whether or not the Packers are leaving their offer on the table to Raji is unknown, but there's little evidence that points to Raji playing at a level that commands that dollar amount.
Among the few aces up Raji's sleeve is that the Packers have four defensive linemen whose contracts expire following the 2013 season, including all of the best run stuffers on the team in Ryan Pickett, Johnny Jolly and C.J. Wilson.
There's also a feeling among NFL observers that Raji would perhaps fit better in a penetrating 4-3 system as opposed to the 3-4 block-eating scheme of defensive coordinator Dom Capers, and maybe there's a team out there that would take a chance on Raji in free agency.
There's only so much money to go around in Green Bay, however, especially in light of the mega-deals signed by quarterback Aaron Rodgers and linebacker Clay Matthews in the summer of 2013.
Cornerback Sam Shields, center Evan Dietrich-Smith and wide receiver James Jones are all scheduled to be free agents at season's end, and there's a risk each of them is taking if they don't accept any offer made by the Packers organization.
It's possible that Raji, Shields, Dietrich-Smith and Jones are playing a game of musical chairs, and when the music stops, there may not be enough money to go around to pay all of them.
Will the Packers renege on their offer to Raji?
Will Raji accept the offer or take the mystery prize behind Door No. 2?
Stay tuned for the conclusion of "Let's Make a Deal."
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