As part of the newly signed contract extension signed between linebacker Clay Matthews and the Green Bay Packers, the deal includes a $20.5 million signing bonus, according to Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "His $20.5 million signing bonus is prorated over five years, so it counts $4.1 million against the cap from 2013-'17 but doesn't count anything in 2018," writes McGinn. The signing bonus is apparently the only guaranteed money in Matthews' five year, $66 million extension.
Following up on the Clay Matthews contract, JSOnline and Tom Silverstein go onto report the Packers have $15.6 million in salary cap space, the majority of which is expected to be taken up by a future Aaron Rodgers contract extension.
General manager Ted Thompson held his annual pre-draft press conference on Thursday and predictably offered little in terms of the Packers draft plans, but did share some of his general philosophy. "It's like Ron always said: 'It's kind of like baseball, you're not going to get a hit every time you go to the plate, but if you have more swings you have a better chance at getting a hit,'" Thompson is quoted as saying by the Associated Press. "I think as a general philosophy, I'd rather have more than less. But at the end of the day I'd rather have more quality than anything. But quality and quantity both is a nice thing." Whether you can read into the Packers trading down in the NFL Draft is up for debate.
In an appearance at the Wisconsin Sports Awards held Thursday evening in Milwaukee, quarterback Aaron Rodgers was asked about new Minnesota Vikings wide receiver and jokingly responded, "Who?" Also from last night, "Rodgers totally ducked the subtle and then direct question from ESPN’s Jason Wilde about his contractual status with the Packers," writes Lori Nickel of JSOnline. Rodgers was at the event to accept awards on behalf of Packers wide receiver James Jones and head coach Mike McCarthy.
Head coach Mike McCarthy provided immediate reaction to the release of the NFL schedule and the season-opening opponent at the Packers official website “Opening day is always exciting,” McCarthy is quoted as saying by Mike Spofford. “Playing the San Francisco 49ers is obviously a challenge that we look forward to.” The Packers lost to the NFC champion 49ers last season, including in the divisional round of the NFL playoffs. The other game getting a lot of attention is a Thanksgiving Day matchup against the Lions in Detroit.
There's plenty of Packers schedule news and analysis at the Journal Sentinel, twice, and JSOnline, the Press-Gazette in a column and article, ESPNMilwaukee.com in an article and blog post, Fox Sports Wisconsin, Packer Report, Packers official website, ESPN.com, Acme Packing Company, AllGreenBayPackers.com and Lombardi Ave.
The Packers have brought in South Carolina defensive lineman Byron Jerideau for a pre-draft visit, according to Tom Silverstein. "He's an intriguing prospect because of his strength. According to the school, he has squatted 670 pounds and benched 500 pounds. Not surprisingly, he was presented with an Outstanding Weight Room award last spring. Jerideau is fractions over 6-1 and 316 lbs. and was suspended by South Carolina for three games for an off-field incident.
Former Packers kicker Errrol Mann passed away, as reported by the Press-Gazette.
One day after having free agent Steve McLendon in for a visit, the defensive lineman re-signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Analysis comes from JSOnline.
Video: Fan reaction to the Packers schedule release comes from Fox 11 in Green Bay...
Brian Carriveau is the author of "It's Just a Game: Big League Drama in Small Town America," and editor of Cheesehead TV's "Pro Football Draft Preview." To contact Brian, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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