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Green and Bold: What Is the Market for Micah Hyde?

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Green and Bold: What Is the Market for Micah Hyde?

The NFL's legal tampering period began Tuesday, which means teams that have their sights set on the Green Bay Packers' unrestricted free agents may begin negotiating the terms of potential future contracts with them ahead of the beginning of free agency on March 9 at 4:00 p.m. ET.

The Packers still have plenty of players they have yet to re-sign, including outside linebackers Nick Perry, Julius Peppers, and Datone Jones; running backs Eddie Lacy and Christine Michael; tight end Jared Cook; guard T.J. Lang; and defensive back Micah Hyde, among others. 

The Packers are currently projected to have about $40.5 million in cap space heading into free agency, so they can afford to re-sign a couple of those players. But getting the ones they want at a price Ted Thompson wants to pay could be tricky.

Cook is undoubtedly one of the Packers' top targets and it seems likely the two sides will get a deal done before the tight end becomes a free agent on Thursday. 

Additionally, one of the players on that list who could have the biggest impact on the 2017 squad is Hyde. But what does his market look like?

The 26-year-old is coming to the end of his rookie deal and will be looking for a healthy second contract. The jack of all trades has lined up as a nickel corner, a safety, and an outside corner for the Packers over his last four seasons, and has been remarkably consistent over that time, as the table below shows:

Season Games Played Total Tackles Sacks PD INT
2016 16 47 1 9 3
2015 15 51 1 6 3
2014 16 45 1 7 2
2013 16 41 1 2 0

Hyde, who has only missed one game in his career, has produced similar numbers in terms of tackles and sacks over his four years. But where he really took a leap forward, no pun intended, in 2016 was in passes defensed, posting a career-high of nine. 

Comps for Hyde's second contract can get tricky because he's difficult to categorize. Should he look to match the second contracts of similarly aged safeties or cornerbacks? Does another team want him to start, which would skyrocket his average salary, or can the Packers retain him as a chess piece and pay him accordingly?

Let's use the Packers' own strong safety, Morgan Burnett, as an example. Burnett signed a four-year, $24.75 million contract that averages just over $6 million annually. Obviously, if Hyde were to stay with the Packers, he needs to make less than that. Ted Thompson and Russ Ball would likely open talks for a deal that would average closer to $4 million per season; let's say they want to lock him up long term for five years and $20 million. 

But there might be a team out there who saw what Hyde can do and wants to pay him to start at either safety or cornerback. That would probably put Hyde in a position to become less effective, since he's at his best when he's moving around the field. But if that's the case, he could probably get an offer averaging between $5 and $6 million from another team. 

Ultimately, Hyde will have to weigh whether he wants to continue doing what he's doing for the Packers and potentially win a Super Bowl, or possibly have the chance to see more starting snaps on another squad. But it's important to remember that three of the Packers' four starting defensive backs are still on rookie contracts, so theoretically, the Packers have the money to retain Hyde if it's truly a priority.

If Thompson and Ball and Hyde's reps can get a deal done averaging $4 or even up to $5 million per year, expect Hyde to be back in 2017. 

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (38) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

stockholder's picture

Pay him! Burnett will be gone if TT is still the gm. ( when his contract runs out.) They Might want to include a PED clause. $$$ Refund. (It's just so disappointing to see players from the packers getting suspended.)

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

Ridiculous. Wasting money on Hyde would be the surest sign Ted has lost all sanity.

marpag1's picture

PED suspensions are without pay. It's difficult to refund money that was never given.

stockholder's picture

Yes - but some language contains a break in the contract. example Martin RB Tampa Bay. And How many readers wanted him in GB when he was a FA. (SB Nation especially) I said no way. Duh.

marpag1's picture

Yes, if you are talking about voiding the future years of the contract (even the guaranteed salaries in future years), or about reclaiming the prorated portion of the signing bonus that still remains for the future years on the contract, then I supposed you could call that a refund. But I don't think you could recoup anything from the part of the contract that is already completed, either the salary or the prorated signing bonus from previous years. And for the suspended games themselves, there is no salary.

Rossonero's picture

I'd love to have Micah Hyde back. Hes versatile, consistent and has stayed healthy for all 4 of his years. If we lose him on top of Shields, then I dont know how Ted doesn't draft 2 CBs. Pay him his market value, he's earned it.

As great as they've been, let Peppers and Lang go, give the money to Perry and Hyde. Our defense needs all the help it can get.

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

Let Peppers, Lang, AND HYDE go.

Spend the money where it's needed, not on safety, which is the deepest group on the team.

Hematite's picture

Many people thought cornerback was deep last year and look how that turned out.

dobber's picture

...lest we forget the trials and tribulations of the S position in the recent bygone era of the good doctor.

Rossonero's picture

Is Ted just waiting to let everyone hit free agency and then see what the market values are for his players? Free agency starts tomorrow...is the plan just to match any offers? What are your guys' thoughts?

dobber's picture

My thoughts: the player ultimately is the one who has to decide when to put his name on the dotted line. We know TT has had contact with some of his FAs, but we don't know all of it or how serious the talks have been. In the end, we can point to TT and say he's not pushing hard enough but the player has to want to sign, too, and I can't blame them for wanting to see what the market says they're worth.

Nick Perry's picture

@ dobber... I thought you made a very interesting point yesterday in a comment. You mentioned how different the Packers defense could look around or even after June once the draft is over and other teams start making some cuts.

Looking at the Packers defense right now even with Hyde for example doesn't scare anyone. Perry just might be gone as much as I hate to say but for $10 million plus a year do you really want to commit that to a guy who's done it for one season plus the 2015 playoffs which he WAS awesome in. I think Ted knows he's in risky waters right now, at least on paper defensively. I think this Defense will look a bit different come July and August. How much remains to be seen.

dobber's picture

"@ dobber... I thought you made a very interesting point yesterday in a comment. "

I might have to make that quote my screen saver! ;)

Nick Perry's picture

LOL....Thumbs Up!!

Savage57's picture

Nice summary of the quandary a guy like Hyde creates for a GM. What he does on the field is evident; how you roll it up and place a value on it is something else. And that could play to the Packers favor if they value the versatility as much as they like to say with all the 'cross-training' they promote.

Hyde's also a bit like Lang. If you lose him, you lose a little bit of the heart of your team along with the playing skills. With all the young guys the Packers invariably cycle through each year, you have to have some stability on the team.

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

No quandary at all. Letting Hyde go should be the easiest decision of the entire offseason.

Rossonero's picture

I could see the Bears going after him. They have a lot of cap room and need secondary help badly.

Handsback's picture

I don't consider him a frontline guy. A starter who will shutdown a reciver or keep a TE from stretching the seems. He's a second line guy, one who guards the 2nd TE or the 4th receiver and makes plays closer to the LOS with a blitz against the pass or rush. How important are those guys? When you throw in his punt return capabilities as well as switch from CB to safety, I would say you have to pay the man. 4M a year seems like a high number for a second line guy, but Hyde is far from just a second line guy.

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

If we waste $4 million on Hyde, Ted must be fired immediately.

stockholder's picture

With all the comments and articles to get Mathews and Cobb to take pay cuts. What about Burnett?

dobber's picture

Is there really that much to save on him? He's not making that awful much, and he earned his $$ last season. Trying to cut his pay means, if successful, you're actually likely to extend his deal and be on the hook for more guaranteed money...not to mention the potential locker-room issues that come from trying to dock a guy who played reasonably well.

stockholder's picture

I saw where he'll make 6mil plus this year. Cobb makes less. I just put it out there. But you are totally correct on the locker - room issues. My feeling is you honor what you sign. Don't ask to renegotiate unless there's a need to.

dobber's picture

There are times when you need to ask a productive player to take less, but you've got to give them something in return...at least that's my take.

I checked the contract status of Burnett (spotrac.com/nfl/green-bay-packers/morgan-burnett-6579/) and Cobb (spotrac.com/nfl/green-bay-packers/randall-cobb-7783/), and Burnett has a base salary of $4.75M in 2017 and a cap hit a hair below $7M. Cobb has a base salary of $8.6M in 2017 and a cap number at $12.6M. If Cobb were cut, his cap hit would be $6.5M. Cut him next season and it goes down to $3.25M (with roughly the same salary).

I see where you're coming from, though: that Cobb contract might turn out to be an albatross around TTs neck.

RCPackerFan's picture

I like Hyde and honestly we wouldn't have made it as far as we did with him.

But my question about him remains. Where does he best fit in? He isn't a pure CB, he isn't a pure Safety. He brings a lot of versatility which is great. But how do they compensate him?

I think letting him hit the market to see where his value really is probably the best way to go. Hopefully once he finds what his real value is he will let Green Bay at the very least match it.

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

Let him go. Absolutely let him go. Safety is the deepest group on the team, and if we have to use Hyde at CB, our season is over anyway.

Let him go and spend the money where it's needed. Honestly, I wouldn't even think of re-signing Hyde. Not a chance.

stockholder's picture

No- Jack of all trades contract. I'm not for overpaying him though. Safety is not deep. Burnett has always got a problem. Haha goes down, there's no one. This position still needs better. The packers secondary plays many different schemes for Capers. This still needs improvement. Brice did well. But will he have a sophomore slump? It's not just the CBs.

egbertsouse's picture

I know he looks pretty good next to the other stiffs that we have playing CB but he is a JAG.

Nick Perry's picture

I've always liked Hyde, always said he was a "Football Player" which the Packers Defense especially can always use. I hope the Packers are able to bring him back on a deal that's good for both the Packers and Hyde.

Since '61's picture

If the Packers were to lose Hyde to FA who would fill his role? He not only helps to solidify the secondary but he is also a reliable punt returner. Looking at 2016 we expected CB to be one of the team's deepest positions and that went poof! shortly after the season started. If the same were to happen to the safety position in 2017 many fans will want to bury TT alive for letting Hyde go as they have for letting Hayward go in 2016. Now we're allegedly reaching out to bring House back. Will w do the same with Hayward in a few seasons as well? I wouldn't go over $4 mil per season for Hyde with only half of that guaranteed, but I would at least try to retain him. If another team wants to overpay him to become a starter then the choice is his. I'm hoping we can keep him because he shows up and he makes plays. Thanks, Since '61

dobber's picture

If Hyde walks, it's because the Packers like what they have in Marwin Evans and Kentrell Brice. I used the same "who will play that role" argument for Perry the other day, but, whereas Perry clearly had a defined role, I don't know that Hyde really does. Very possible that the Hyde role morphs into something different with a new player filling it.

porupack's picture

Definitely try to bring Hyde back. Experience and familiarity count for a lot in the secondary, as it does on the O-line. He is versatile. He's played well for the pack, and according to Draft&Develop (if GB is such a thing)...then don't be a rookie-farm for other teams.

akeemthedream's picture

Hyde's "versatility" is actually a mirage. He fills so many roles because there are no other options. He doesn't do anything at a high level - he's average, which (sadly) is still better than everyone else.

I'd be upset if we lost Daniels, Clark, or Clinton-Dix. Everyone else on defense can be easily replaced.

Face it - the Packers have $ to spend. If they don't resign Hyde, or any of their FA's, it's because they don't care if they leave.

dobber's picture

I tend to agree with you: Hyde is a player who really isn't what you want as a regular CB, and hasn't really shown that he's a starting caliber S. He's a guy who you always think you can improve on...until he makes a key play. And he makes just enough of them to stay relevant. In all, he's the kind of guy you want on your roster, but it's got to be at the right price, and not at the expense of a better player.

Nick Perry's picture

Off Topic of Hyde..... Saw something on PFF this morning that caught my eye about Perry. He was the #1 ranked 3-4 OLB against the run last year. I knew he was excellent in run coverage but #1 surprised me. Starting to wonder if $10 million might not be that bad for Perry...

RCPackerFan's picture

I think there has to be some good incentives in his salary. He has been injured to much to not have some sort of incentives built in.

cuervo's picture

Even suggesting spending 4-5 million a year on a player like Hyde is absolute insanity. 2mil per year, max. and that's stretching it.

mnbruton's picture

What can I tell you? That's his market value. Packers don't have to pay it.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Yup, and it might be more than $4M or $5M. Burnett signed that deal 3 full seasons ago when the cap was $133M. It has gone up 25.5% since then, and Burnett's play has improved. Burnett's value today is considerably more than the $6.1 AAV he got long ago.

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