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Packers Blog Roundup: Rodgers Says Retaining Jones Should Be Priority

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Packers Blog Roundup: Rodgers Says Retaining Jones Should Be Priority

In an effort to break up the Daily Links, this section will be primarily for discussion of the Packers by bloggers. I won't be linking to second-hand news sources unless they include commentary on the news.

My new method for breaking up news and discussion knows no boundaries. Mainstream media will be included in the blog area if they make blog posts and simply provide commentary. Conversely, traditional "bloggers" will be included in the Packers Daily Links if they do first-hand reporting.

In a radio interview yesterday, quarterback Aaron Rodgers made his best pitch for the Packers to retain James Jones in free agency. "James is extremely talented and he's a guy that I think we have to bring back without a doubt," Rodgers is quoted as saying by Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com. "He should be priority No. 1. And I mean that with all my heart. He really should be priority No. 1. We don't win the Super Bowl without him. And we need him."

Aaron Rodgers didn't stop there, mentioning Mark Tauscher too. "(I’m) really hoping that he is still with us this year because I don’t know what I’d do without that big guy in the locker room," Rodgers is quoted by Bob Wolfley of JSOnline. "He makes me feel better about myself everyday, and he’s an overrated backgammon and cribbage player. But he’s been a hell of a player too, so I hope we bring him back because he’s a partner in crime often in these pranks so there’s my pitch for ‘Tausch.' "

Weighing in on Aaron Rodgers' comments is Kevin McCauley of Acme Packing Company. "The Packers have Jermichael Finley coming back from injury and they just drafted Randall Cobb," writes McCauley. "I think that most of us are looking for Jordy Nelson to step up and play a bigger role this season. Donald Driver is, by all accounts, healthy and ready to go, so Jones is unlikely to start. With the Packers facing cap issues and the roster having four other high-quality targets for Rodgers, it seems unlikely that the team will offer him a multi-year deal better than a competing team can offer him."

Wondering where James Jones will land in free agency is Brandon Benson of APC. "I wasn't sure how much interest the free agent market would show in Green Bay Packers WR James Jones, but one NFL executive told JS Online that 'he'll be highly sought after' which does surprise me," writes Benson. "If he does receive an offer of $2 million per season, I'd be surprised if the Packers matched it." On the contrary, I think the Packers would be more than glad to pay Jones $2 million per season. He'll command far more than that on the open market, which I don't think the Packers will be able to match.

Thomas Hobbes of AllGreenBayPackers.com did some research into the wide receiver market and thinks that Jones will most likely command a salary around $4 million per year. "Realistically, Jones will probably see offers around this range," writes Hobbes. "While not getting paid premium money, he still will be making considerably more than last year, which was the last year of his rookie contract as a 3rd round draft choice." This blog post is a good breakdown. I have to agree and think Jones will sign with someone for near this amount of money.

More on James Jones and Aaron Rodgers appears at Lombardi Ave.

Commenting on the news that Nick Barnett will be traded or released is Lombardi Ave. "It’s not surprising that Barnett will be moving on," according to the blog post. "After being injured and placed on injured reserve last season, inside linebackers Desmond Bishop and A.J. Hawk played remarkably well in helping lead the Packers to a Super Bowl title."

More on Nick Barnett comes from Lauren Fernandez of Aerys Sports who has screen shots of Barnett's Twitter posts.

New free agent signee Brandian Ross found a fan in Talkin' S-Mac. "He's 6-0. More than 190 lbs," according to the blog post. "Not afraid of contact. Plays the ball in the air. A former safety. Turned CB. He looks for contact. He'll be a special teams gem. It's clear that Ted Thompson wanted to improve the special teams unit. Look for Ross to have the opportunity to win the job as the gunner. Further, his versatility in the secondary is invaluable - though I imagine he'll enter into training camp strictly as a CB."

Outside linebacker Jamari Lattimore gets some "pub" from Kevin McCauley. "Lattimore might actually get some time in preseason," writes McCauley. "I don't expect him to make the final cut, as he's raw and undersized at this point, but he's an interesting player who was an absolute sack machine in college, and he might just need a year on the practice squad to develop into a legitimate NFL player."

Safety Anthony Bratton is profiled by Zach Kruse at AllGreenBayPackers.com. "The Packers are likely losing much of their depth at the safety position, so a guy like Bratton stands a decent shot at making the roster or landing on the practice squad," writes Kruse. "Anthony Levine is a candidate to move from the practice squad to the 53-man roster, which would leave a theoretical opening for Bratton to grab in camp." I'm not sure I'd classify Bratton's chances as "decent," but I see the logic.

Roundups on the undrafted free agents appear by Chad Toporski of AllGreenBayPackers.com, Brandon Benson at APC, and Amanda Lawson of Aeyrs Sports.

The Packers' win total for the 2011 season from a betting perspective is brought up by Kevin McCauley at APC. "The o/u on Packers wins at the MGM sports book has opened at 11.5 wins, which is the highest in the league," writes McCauley.

Kevin McCauley also makes note of the likelihood of renovations to Lambeau Field. More on this will no doubt come tomorrow at the annual shareholders meeeting.

There's some good information coming from Acme Packing Company, but their title on the Packers' financials seems a bit off: "Green Bay Packers Report Profit Increase, But Not Without Lockout Spin." I don't see any spin from the Packers. The fact that they wouldn't have turned a profit had it not been for the lockout would have been a certainty. It's just the truth.

Commenting on a potential visit to the White House by the Packers is Monty McMahon of Total Packers. "What could perhaps be even more awkward is several players who were on last year’s Super Bowl squad will likely be playing elsewhere if the White House visit happens," writes McMahon. It might be noteworthy, but I'm not sure it will be awkward.

The finalized preseason schedule is posted at APC.

More on the preseason appears at Lombardi Ave.

Free agency is touched upon at Lombardi Ave. too.

Forrest Gregg is listed as the no. 8 Packer of all-time at Green Bay Packer Talk.

A picture of Paul Hornung on the cover of Sports Illustrated is posted at Packerville, U.S.A.

The post-CBA direction of the Packers is covered by Brady Augustin at Green Bay Packer Nation.

Brian Carriveau is the editor of the Maple Street Press Packers Annual. To contact Brian, email carriveau@uwalumni.com.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (30) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

jeremy's picture

At 3-4 million per season it would be hard to blame Jones for leaving and hard to blame the Packers for letting him go.

Mojo's picture

I hope the people who were critical of Favre for publicly campaigning to retain certain players will take A-Rod to task for doing the same.

I don't mind if he petitions MM or TT in private, but when you go public it could make the GM look bad in some fans eyes...if he doesn't fulfill A-Rod's requests.

Zeke's picture

Not to be an asshole, but what does Favre have to do with this? If the worst thing that happens in Ted Thompson's life this year is that "some fans" might be disappointed that he didn't take Rodgers' comments as marching orders, he'll have won the lottery.

Mojo's picture

Zeke, the point is if you don't criticize A-Rod, but did criticize Favre for playing pseudo GM, then you are a hypocrite. And I am not a big fan of Brents. Capiche?

Also, I never suggested this would be the worst thing to happen to TT this year.

So I would expect those bloggers or fans who were critical of Brent to express their disappointment in A-Rod.

Not to be an asshole, but if you believe the purpose of my initial response was to compulsively bring up Brents name for the sake of bring up his name, be assured, the less I ever hear of him, the better.

CSS's picture

To me there's a pretty big difference here. Favre began an intentional power struggle with management and feigned interest in retirement that intensified every year while he co-existed with Ted Thompson and didn't feel TT was listening. He literally announced his retirement the day after a trade for Randy Moss failed to materialize.

Rodgers is mastering the art of being the model teamate, whether it's genuine or not isn't for me to say. He lobbies for 'his guy' to get a good contract. If it happens internally, he looks great. Externally, no rift between he and management and 'his guy' still get paid.

Now, if Rodgers threatens retirement or asks for a trade to the Vikings after this you can compare the two. Otherwise, night and day.

Mojo's picture

When you "lobby" for your guy in public like A-Rod did or mostly behind the scenes like Brent did(until he started doing interviews about the rift with TT)
and you are considered one of the team leaders you are setting up the GM for(IMO)unnecessary criticism.

Now if things go poorly, fans of Rodgers(and his fan base is getting rapidly larger) can state that TT was an idiot for not listening to him, when in fact there probably were many other factors at work in TT's decision.

I remember hearing from a number of Favre lovers about what a jag TT was for not resigning Wahle, Rivera, or going after Moss and Mouch. You put the GM in a no win situation. If the players perform it was because the lobbyist knew better and if not, well the GM should have over rid him In that way the two are similar.

It's also similar in that the players A-Rod and Favre lobbied for would benefit them the most.

To me it is similar to when Woodson publicly questioned the instillation of the 3-4 defense. As the RS said, let the player play and everyone else do their jobs.

CSS's picture

You originally said:

"Zeke, the point is if you don’t criticize A-Rod, but did criticize Favre for playing pseudo GM, then you are a hypocrite."

That's what I take exception with. The context of the situations aren't remotely comparable. Favre was trying to undermine management, Rodgers made some innocuous statements on a radio show where he knows very well that Jones is getting paid either way and TT will hardly be thrown under the bus if the market inflates Jones value and TT doesn't retain him.

Rodgers is bragging up the value of a teammate, not throwing a coaching staff and concept under a bus like Woodson. I can't see the analogies you're trying to equate.

Pack12's picture

Who did Favre want resigned?

Are you thinking of when he wanted Moss?
or the Javon Walker holdout incident?

Because i would consider those completely different

Ed's picture

Wih the team looking to do work on Lambeau would there be any chance they would issue stock again to raise revenue?

packeraaron's picture

Been wondering that myself. Murphy said it was a possibility after the Super Bowl.

Ed's picture

I'm chomping at the bit to buy some shares. I wish I had back in 1997 was it?
Ed

fishandcrane's picture

Hello? James Jones bashers? hmmm... might be tough to argue with, you know,...somebody who actually knows,...like the QB!

Chuck's picture

Rodgers would probably lobby for any one of the receivers on the team if they were free agents. I'm sure James Jones is better than most other #4 wideouts on most any other team. But that's what he is, #4. Can't blame Rodgers for wanting all the good receivers he can get, but we can only keep/pay so many. What happens when Finley and Jennings contracts are up. Would you want Jones' contract to alter the future of those two...not me.

PackersRS's picture

Truth be told, Rodgers' pitch for Jones seemed a lot more genuine than his pitch for Tauscher. It's like he did the latter because Tausch is a great guy and teammate, but he trully believes Jones is an amazing talent and losing him would affect the team.

That being said, players play, managers manage. Nothing wrong with expressing his opinions, but shut the hell up Arod.

Mojo's picture

Totally agree RS

PkrNboro's picture

Granted, James Jones has made some spectacular receptions -- in the vein of the more difficult, the more likely the reception.

But what stands out to me is the misses -- on those non-receptions I never saw him dive, stretch, lean, or lay out his body to make a catch.

I've seen Driver make a one-handed, mid-air grab while going to the ground; I've seen Jennings stretch to get fingertips on the back half of the ball.

Will Thompson consider this as he conjures a dollar amount to offer Jones ???

NoWayJose's picture

I honestly wonder if the Packers even make an offer to Jones, despite AR's plea (which I do think Ted will take into account, albiet with a grain of salt).

You just can't have that many second-contract players on the team. Will A-Rod say the same thing about Nelson a year from now? Probably. He WILL say it about Finley. The buck has to stop somewhere. The team can only spend so much on pass-catchers, you've got to have some cheap labor at those positions (e.g. Cobb, Swain) on the team.

(As an aside, I wonder if A-Rod takes into account that re-signing Jones would effectively sign the release papers for Swain)

PackersRS's picture

TT: Rodgers, if you're willing to re-sign with us for less money, so that we can sign those guys, than it's a deal. Deal? Oh, BTW, you have to convince Matthews to do the same...

NoWayJose's picture

Yup. And Raji too, of course!

This is the classic trap that Super Bowl champions fall into. We won the Super Bowl! Our guys must ALL be great!

You have to focus on keeping the core of the team together. The blue-chippers, who cannot be replaced. The secondary players MUST be interchangeable.

jeremy's picture

James Jones is the definition of a secondary talent.

TT is going to save his money for Finley, Raji and Matthews.

Majik Man's picture

You all bring up great points, but is there anything to how the comment came about? It was a radio interview, so before we go and start saying ARodg shouldn't say this or that, what was the context of the conversation? Probably questions led up to it, and he's a very open, honest guy, but gives props to his teammates. He's a class act. Not that everyone is perfect, but it'd be worse if he went out of his way to go make a media comment.

Mojo's picture

This will be my final response to this topic. CSS, you stated above that Favre was trying to undermine management and therefore the situation with Rodgers is not remotely the same. I believe your premise on Favre was wrong(I can't believe I'm defending him). At the time, Favre was looking at the short-term outlook for success and wasn't currently trying to sabotage the team. In his mind, he believed keeping certain players was the best course of action to take. The GM thought otherwise and was already in the process of deconstructing the roster.

IMO, what Rodgers said recently (including "retaining Jones is priority #1") is not innocuous. That could undermine the long view TT is trying to take(many posters here have already alluded to the need to preserve funds for bluechip players). To me the the situations are very similar.

Finally, the intent of either Favre or Rodgers isn't what's important here. It's when key players, who have the ear of the public, spout off on personnel. It could put the true decision makers in a bad spot and create unnecessary distractions.

I am a huge fan of Rodgers but I hold him to the same standards as I would any other player.

Cole's picture

The fact is that if we had lost any of those playoff games where Jones dropped gimme touchdowns everyone would be calling for his head, but since we won the Superbowl it's annoying but acceptable that he drops some of the easiest passes.

To me it's not acceptable and he should be allowed to move on.

CSS's picture

The overreaction in this frenzied free agent market is complete validation for building through the draft. So little care for sustained success.

PackersRS's picture

Pardon the french, but what are the fuck you complaining about?

THIS IS FOOTBALL! We are actually discussing football and not labor battles!

CSS's picture

I approve this message....

FITZCORE1252's picture

Yessir.

GBP 4 LIFE

FITZCORE1252's picture

From the PG... "Amid speculation veteran linebacker Brady Poppinga could be released to give the Green Bay Packers additional salary cap room, his agent said today that seems unlikely."

http://blogs.greenbaypressgazette.com/blogs/gpg/insider/2011/07/27/poppi...

Does this please ANYONE that reads it? Does 1 single person here want Brady back at $2+ mill? If so, please expound... Just curious.

GBP 4 LIFE

CSS's picture

Resounding no here....

PackersRS's picture

Poppinga's 2011 stats: 8.5 sacks. 50 tackles. 3 FF. You heard it here first.

(I didn't say where)

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