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Packers Haven't Lost as Much as You'd Think in Free Agency

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Packers Haven't Lost as Much as You'd Think in Free Agency

Outside of T.J. Lang, the Packers haven't lost anyone to lose much sleep over.

Outside of T.J. Lang, the Packers haven't lost anyone to lose much sleep over.

There has been a lot of talk lately, about all the departed Green Bay Packers in NFL free agency and of course, some have taken to the sky-is-falling mentality.

In truth, there should be no surprise with what Ted Thompson and the Packers have done thus far. There was no way Ted was going to key his long list of free agents and frankly, with some, he shouldn’t have wanted to.

Datone Jones showed potential and he could have played well in Green Bay next season, but he needed a fresh start. Essentially, he is a first-round bust.

Micah Hyde is a solid player, but he’s not a starter. And if he’s your nickel corner, you have problems, simple as that.

Hyde is a very good third safety, I’ll give you that. He also forces turnovers, which is obviously important. But match him up against just about anyone one-on-one and it’s trouble. Again, nice player, but not worth anything near five years $30 million.

Eddie Lacy is one the Packers might regret, but being paid like a top-10 running back, as Lacy will next season with the Seahawks, is also a lot to ask for a guy that played just five games a year ago and looked like the pillsbury doughboy back in 2015.

But, looking back, Green Bay did pretty well with Ty Montgomery down the stretch at running back and with an absolutely loaded draft class, there will be a good chance for an addition or two.

J.C. Tretter would have been nice to keep, but in all honesty, the only move Ted probably regrets next season is allowing T.J. Lang to leave.

That’s one the Packers should have ponied up for, even though it would have moved him past Bryan Bulaga on the team’s offensive-line payscale, it should have been done.

Without Lang, Green Bay will either have a rookie or a second-year player starting, because the free-agent options are worthless and Don Barclay is just terrible.

Finding a guard isn’t the hardest thing in the world. Just look at Lane Taylor. And Jason Spriggs probably has a shot, even if he looks like more of a tackle. But as long as Barclay isn’t starting Week 1, then it will be hard to fault Thompson. More than $8 million a year is a lot for a guard.

So while it seems like the Packers have lost a lot, they also added two talented tight ends (replacing Jared Cook) and a veteran corner that has a legit chance to start and play well (Davon House). Plus, the compensatory haul in 2018, will be a good one.

It might be hard to see Green Bay players signing elsewhere everyday, but it’s bound to happen and outside of Lang and an aging Julius Peppers, I don’t see anyone the Packers will miss tremendously.

It’s nice to think that big-name free agents can help get you over the hump, but most of the time, it’s just not true. There is no arguing that the Packers need more help, especially on defense if they are going to contend again for the Super Bowl. But at this point, whatever help they get, is most likely coming from the NFL’s annual selection meeting.

 
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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (109) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

sheppercheeser's picture

I agree with MOST parts of this article except for the TJ Lang comments. He'll be missed as a warrior that gave all he had, year after year, but he wasn't worth $10m with his bad back and at his age. We can find another guard- no worries.

KenEllis's picture

So if losing Lang, Tretter, Lacy, Cook, J. Peppers, D. Jones, Hyde ( and don't forget Pennell, Shields, & Starks) from the end of the season roster (and only replacing Cook & Hyde) is no big deal isn't the clear implication from that assertion that the roster was overrated last offseason?

dobber's picture

No, the assertion would be that some portions of the roster underachieved.

DesertPackFan's picture

Actually the best assertion would be that the Packers didn't think any of the mentioned players would provide much return on investment, much less the Packers winning season next year.

Lang was as good as gone last year when the Packers made it known they wouldn't discuss extentions w/ he or Sitton.

The TKstinator's picture

Barclay, to quote another Barkley: "Turrrible"

canadapacker's picture

I kind of agree with you. But that is Thompson's mantra. When he first took over as GM he had a good line in front of Favre and he let both guys go when they wanted way too much money near the end of their careers and they both were a bust Rivera with Dallas and Wahle ( 1 good year with Carolina).

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

I'm thrilled we didn't sign Lang. Excellent player, but older, more injuries coming, and we need the money elsewhere.

Move Bulaga inside and promote Spriggs outside. Problem solved.

egbertsouse's picture

Since you apparently slept through last season, let me point out the flaw in your plan. Spriggs sucked. He got owned by every DL he faced last year. AR would be injured by game 3.

Rossonero's picture

Egbert is right. Spriggs still has a lot of work to do.

DesertPackFan's picture

He needs to gain some weight and strength for sure. And he didn't play well at OG, since he's definitely NOT an OG. He will be a quality backup OT this year and become a starter soon enough at either RT or LT. His length and agility are his best attributes and both are mostly useless at OG.

JohnnyLogan's picture

Until they rid themselves of Capers nothing else matters. Go to playoffs on Ridgers back. Lose because defense is slow and stupid.

JDK52's picture

"Lose because defense is slow and stupid"

You say that right after saying Capers is the problem with our defense. Who's fault is it that first-round defense picks get injured and don't play up to their talent level? Who's fault is it that entire position groups get injured at the same time and Capers ends up calling plays to a group of undrafted rookies?

You don't even watch the games and yet you have the gall to come in here saying Capers is the problem.

Go away.

Ryan Graham's picture

Just to make it known, one might point the finger at Mark Lovato, strength and conditioning coach, to an extent for a number of the injuries. Whatever he is doing, he's doing something wrong to allow for so many groin and hamstring strains through the past 10 years. Those are the most preventable injuries by far and we have an excessive amounts of them each year.

This passed year there were more so unfortunate injuries, Sam shields' 5th concussion, lacys ankle, CM3s shoulder on top of his hamstring (a given) and that's all they are sometimes, is unfortunate. That said I do believe Capers has just let the game go by him. He doesn't utilize the talents given to him appropriately, and it seems like he's just always one or two steps behind in his schemes. He's made a few moves occasionally to basically save his job, like moving Clay inside, but he never gets ahead. Constantly playing catch-up.

One move he could make to get ahead is moving the right guy into that Rover safety/corner hybrid, be it Randall or Brice, or both depending on matchups. I like Randall as a ball hawk and I like Brice to make some plays from the slot in both the secondary and even to blitz on occasion, Capers has seen some success with that in the past.

DesertPackFan's picture

If a player is not developing and under-preforming, the best place to look is the position coach. In this case Whitt. Capers job is to implement a scheme base on game planning. Its the position coaches job to train and work on the players development w/in the scheme.

Whitt has done alot of good in GB, there are no doubts about that. I don't think last year was his fault since he was working w/ the #4 CB in the #1 role and the other top 5 CB were injured. Hell even Goodson was injured last year.

Capers D is man coverage scheme and he was forced to resort to alot of zone and man w/ injured players.

Ryan Graham's picture

Last year with the injuries is understandable, but from what I remember in years past he traditionally runs zone blitz. Obviously there's some blend of man and zone coverages, I suppose when they had Woodson Williams and Shields he was running more man coverages. Whatever it takes to get back to that.

Chris Vachio's picture

Agreed. I'm shocked to see the number of hamstring problems at the pro level. Those are conditioning injuries and that simply should not happen. That being said, the strength coach works at the pleasure and schedule of the head coach. It's been a problem during McCarthy's tenure, but Lovat has only been the head strength coach since 2010.

Much of the fault lies with the players, too. I was talking with Louie Simmons back around 1998 or so. I was wearing a Packers shirt and he was wearing a very cool Packers hat, so we naturally struck up conversation about the greatest team in NFL. Louie, at the time, was consulting with several NFL teams to help their S&C programs, the Packers among them. He told me the reason Favre stayed so healthy was because he squatted with the linemen, not the skill position players. Louie said he may be a QB, but he lifts like a man. He also talked about introducing dragging sled work to the Patriots while they were under Parcells. I said that must have been interesting, he looked at me with a look of complete and utter disgust and said "A bunch of goddam prima donas is what they are! I could have had a girl's high school track team pulling more weight on those sleds than those pussies! If it's not in their contract, they're not going to do it."

Packer_Pete's picture

It's great that people already are talking about the comp picks for 2018... But the drafts will have to better then for the Packers. One cannot really comment on 2014 - 2016, since most players are still on their first contracts. but for the 4 drafts between 2010 and 2013, there are only 7 players total left - and that is since House came back. Otherwise it'd be only 6...
So yes, maybe quite a few comp picks, but those should be used wisely...

Bert's picture

Yeah. I would gladly trade an established player for comp picks any day. Not sure why we get so excited about draft picks. If history is an accurate indicator the majority of those picks have a much greater value prior to the draft than after the draft. just a fact. Not just with the Packers but with about every organization in pro sports that employs a draft.

Michael Grunewald's picture

Exactly. If you look at just rounds 1-4 on the defensive side of the ball, discounting for Nick Collins career ending injury, only 8 of 18 picks have inked second contracts. Considering the draft and develop philosophy, that is a recipe for disaster on that side of the ball. We have been feeling it for the better part of five years.

dobber's picture

That's a scary stat...

Tundraboy's picture

And that's what worries me. Few picks have made immediate impacts, especially on defense and that is where we appear headed this year for OLB, CB, and also RB depth.

Bert's picture

Good point. We (me included) all like the draft mainly for the anticipation. But in reality draft picks are pretty much a low value proposition. GMs (Ted included) in most sports over value draft picks as much as us fans. I think it's the psychology of thinking you (the GM) will be the guy that finds a bunch gold nuggets. Doesn't happen. mainly find fools gold. In reality if a GM would trade all his draft picks every year for established players he would get a much better return in value than actually drafting.

DesertPackFan's picture

And FA maybe work out 50% of the time. About the same as draft picks, except they cost ALOT more.

Bert's picture

Wasn't talking about FAs. Both the draft and FAs are a crap shoot. Just saying that draft picks will have a much higher value prior to the draft than after. That's true with any sport that has a draft. Fact.

GB Jacker's picture

So you think we can afford 8 additional veteran contracts on our roster? hmmm. Cos rookies are cheap as fuck. Draft classes can win championships... see Seattle with Wilson, Sherman, Thomas all on rookie deals - look at Atlantas squad now due to hitting in the draft. Us in 2010 with CM, Raji, Shields.

Dallas are going to be a force through Zeek and Dak's rookie deals. If they left they would command much much larger cap hits.

Bert's picture

No I don't think we can afford 8 veteran contracts. You're missing the point. I was merely commenting on the over value of draft picks. You took it to another level. Oh well.

JacFrost's picture

There is a lot of irony in all this for me. On the one hand I though, get rid of Datone,
Keep Lacy, Perry and Hyde, Cook and one O linemen if the deal is right otherwise say goodbye and replace via free agency and the draft.
Ya we got two tight ends and Martellis is injury prone. Missed a lot of games past several years.

dobber's picture

Martellus Bennett has missed 9 (regular season) games in 9 years, 5 of them in 2015. He played hurt for a significant portion of 2017 with the Patriots--and was still productive--and has been willing to play with injury at other times in his past, too. I think that's going to compare well with most TEs in the league.

Steve Cheez's picture

Nothing like a fact or two to mess up a good argument...

dobber's picture

The loss that many seem to lament is Tretter, saying that he should have been retained to be the starting RG when Lang (who many are sad to see go, but understand that choice) walked. If the Packer coaches, who see these guys every day, didn't want to offer Tretter enough money to keep him to play guard (a position that usually pays better than Center), I think that says something. If you pay him $6M/yr, you're telling LInsley that he's not your C anymore.

Otherwise, the player I think they're going to miss most is Datone. Some will argue against that, but he wasn't a cold fish in 2016--ate up a lot of snaps, got pressure, and can set the edge when he's motivated to do so--in his first year of playing more OLB. They're going to need more depth there and its less likely that a rookie is going to jump in and play well at OLB than at, say, RB. I felt Jones might be growing...but again, the brass felt he wasn't worth the $4M one-year deal the Vikes were willing to dish out. Affordable...unless there's more to the story.

L's picture

Yup. I think letting D.Jones go will prove to be the biggest mistake.

Disappointed that we could not bring back Tretter in light of losing Lang, but I agree that the Jones departure will leave the biggest impact.

I do wish that the Packers had shown real interest in CB S.Gilmore; hopefully, D.House can be more than just somewhat useful.

Finwiz's picture

Surely you are being sarcastic. WTH.
Datone Jones? Are we talking about the same guy? This is a big zero on the concern-o-meter.

WKUPackFan's picture

You are probably not talking about the same guy, because the Datone Jones dobber is talking about is exactly who he said; got pressure, set the edge, and held up against the run. Datone will be the most difficult to replace.

DesertPackFan's picture

If your only a stats guy you can say Datone was a bust and never produced. But people who know what they saw in pressures and edge setting really know the sport. Stats tell very limited amount when it came to what he provided.

Nick Perry's picture

I agree on Datone. $4 million was doable for a guy who was able to eat up snaps, lead the team in QB hits, and be decent on run downs. I have a feeling Jones will THRIVE in Zimmer's defense. He slimmed down real nice last season and is a perfect fit in a 4-3 defense, especially with some of the defensive players the Vikings have.

cheesycowboy's picture

I have a hunch Jayrone Elliott will replace Jones adequately on another prove it deal by Ted.

L's picture

I really hope you're right.

caruso81's picture

Look, we were all screaming because the team had so many problems on D last year, and anyone with a TV understands that our guys were just too slow. Well, the answer to that is not resigning those same guys. Peppers, Hyde, and Jones were excellent Packers, but they weren't good enough players. You change course by actually changing course.

Lacy? Meh. Reports are that he got a reasonably close offer from the Packers but he wanted to go elsewhere. That is code for, "I'm sick and tired of them calling me fat, but I don't want to solve the problem myself. I'd like to stay fat and get paid by a team who won't hurt my fat feelings." Do you really want that guy at the money he got?

Cook? I think we were being conned. All his "I'm so happy here" talk was for public consumption, and I liked seeing Ted torch his sorry behind on that one. (Or more correctly, his weasel of an agent.)

Lang? A tough one because he was a truly great Packer, but he's not getting younger or healthier, and while the salary is high but doable, the $19m guaranteed is insane. I do admit that if Don "Miss Turnstiles" Barclay has to start, this one may come back to bite us.

I'm no Ted fan, but in these cases, it all makes sense.

egbertsouse's picture

No it doesn't. Our defense is awful and what has Teddy done to fix it? He got a Jacksonville reject out of the bargain bin. Oh boy! We're Super Bowl bound, baby!

dobber's picture

Withdrawn

Ryan Graham's picture

To call him a 'reject' is a stretch. He was a cap cut. He was one of few bright spots on that defense in 2015. Jax drafted all kinds of rookies in defense thinking they were all going to make an immediate impact and they didnt. The unit was undisciplined and Gus Bradley had zero control over the team from top to bottom. He's no all star, but he's got decent size and speed that specializes in man coverage and does it better than anyone else on the Packers.

dobber's picture

He raises the talent floor at CB just by being signed. He's not the answer all by himself, but he's not likely to be part of the problem, either.

That said, word is that Claiborne and Carr are now off the board. Starting to look like the draft is where any additional CB help will be coming from...but I don't think that's a surprise to any of us at this point.

DesertPackFan's picture

From what I read, early last season Jax started playing much more zone, which is not what Jax had House playing in '15. He is a press man CB, he's not good in zone or off man. Being forced to play against his strengths led to his being benched. Typical of losing franchises to change schemes mid season over-react.

croatpackfan's picture

I agree with MOST parts of this article except for the JC Tretter comments.
Tretter is injury prone player and Linsley is much better choice for center. Tretter is not strong enough to play guard, especially run support guard.
I'm sorry for losing Eddie, but it looks like very reasonable decision. And, yes, you can find rammer/thumper in the draft, or you can sign LeGarrette Blount to fill that hole.

Bearmeat's picture

Getting rid of Lang was the smart thing to do. No way he should be getting paid almost as much as Bakh. He's an OG. We can't fully replace his lost value, but we can come close enough with an average player that the salary cap savings will be worth it.

What I'm concerned about it pass rush and RB. As it stands right now, if Monty isn't solid or gets hurt, we're screwed. And at OLB, CM3 is done being a difference maker. Perry is a projection/gamble. And we've got unproven UDFAs and old 2nd year players behind them.

WHY NOT sign Blount as a pounder and Barwin? Neither would break the bank and we don't have anyone they'd be taking snaps from.

This is the part of TT that I will never understand.

Chris Scoggins's picture

The Packers will sign a veteran back, but it will be last minute. They are waiting for the market to clear to the point that they can get one for the veteran minimum. There are a ton of guys sitting around waiting for a call, so why rush? They don't need a difference maker - just a guy that isn't going to lose the game for you.

I'm holding out hope (probably illogically) that there will be one or two defensive signings as free agency season wears on and players start softening their stance on how much money they want. There are some decent Edge, CB and DT guys out there still. When their asking prices start reaching value then the Packers will move.

mauro539's picture

Even if TT trusts CM3 and Perry, we still have very few depth in the OLB position. If he's not confortable about signing Barwin, why not at least bring back Mike Neal? He had some decent numbers in his last season, so why not offer him a contract similar to the one given to Jay Elliott?

MITM's picture

Loved Lang but was overpaid. If Tretter was re signed and Lang wasn't, I saw Tretter starting at center and Linsley playing guard. Tretter was also overpaid, fair enough. Saw Peppers going back to Carolina all along, fine. Datone Jones I could live without, I liked Mike Neal better, what the hell happened to Neal anyway?? Lacy I loved, did not expect/want to lose but I am starting to come to terms with the reality that he has no interest in doing the right thing conditioning wise, and I hope that is the case. While I agree he was overpaid and took the money, rightfully so, Micah Hyde was an important player. When we were "running the table" it seemed whenever we needed a play on D in that stretch Hyde made it. He stepped up as the leader we lacked on defense all season prior, and it is stupid to act like he isnt a big loss for us because he was "slow", seriously come on. Cook for Bennett is a wash, imo and when you throw Kendricks in its certainly an upgrade. For all the praise being heaped on TT for not overpaying these guys, where is the criticism for doing nothing thus far to fill these spots? Tell me how we improved the team speed on D by getting rid of these "slower" guys in favor of guys who couldnt take their spots to begin with? In the opening days of FA it was great to hear we were probably losing Cook, and to immediately replace him with a better player. I figured that was a sign of things to come, but it doesnt seem that way. I cannot wrap my head around not improving this defense with a few veterans at literally any position other than safety.

cuervo's picture

There will be more veteran players cut after the draft, veteran guards, OLB's etc. There is still pletny of time and money left to fill some of those potential holes.

I'm glad they've moved on from all the players listed. Other than Lang, the rest are all replaceable and were nothing special while here. Resigning the same players that can't get it done year after year isn't making your team better.

MITM's picture

Right but there is no way of knowing who that is that will be cut, so you may waste a draft pick at a position where a veteran is cut after the fact, when you could have strengthened a different position with said pick.

Chris Scoggins's picture

That's not playing to win - that's playing to not lose. Gotta take some risks or you'll never get better.

Finding the right players is a numbers game - gotta give a lot of folks a chance to find the gems.

dobber's picture

In the end, you draft how the draft falls to you. You can do it strictly for need, or you take the talent that falls in your lap early and make do later on. That's where this team is at this point...and we're not really that far past the start of FA.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

There is being proactive and reactive. You've clearly voted for being reactive, Dobber. Or you could call it being opportunistic. Barwin signed with the rams. I am reading one year, $6.5M. Pretty affordable. Maybe Croat was right to suggest that Barwin just didn't want to play in GB. The rams are bad, so playing for a lousy team didn't deter him. There are still FAs who would help us in 2017, but not any I can think of at OLB. If there are cuts later, and they come in time so that the player can go through our TC, TT can be opportunistic. Otherwise, the only help left for OLB is the draft, which should provide a good prospect. I agree that Datone loss is more sizable than most seem to think. Decent pressure, decent edge, small contract.

Newman and Carr are off the table. Still some #2 CBs out there, though they might be #3 CBs. Oh well, TT did more during FA than I thought he would. We do have to re-sign Adams, Linsley, pay Dix's 5th yr option or long term deal, and probably if Brice doesn't develop a modest increase to Burnett.

TT did more during FA than I'd have guessed. He lost more players than I expected, but I don't blame him for that: I can and have defended allowing all of those players to walk given the offers they got.

MITM's picture

Connor Barwin, Kevin Minter and Legarrette Blount are all still available, but for how much longer? Barwins an upgrade, Minters an upgrade, Blount is an upgrade over Lacy. Its amazing how much better of a team we would be with those 3, and how much less pressure there would be on us come draft day, even if all 3 of those guys were 1 year deals. We were 4 quarters away from a Super Bowl, I just dont understand.

EdsLaces's picture

Blount is not an upgrade. He's a one tricky pony.

dobber's picture

I tend to agree...he's an all-or-nothing bruiser and has a reputation for being "enigmatic" (that's the word I'll use here). That said, he did make 1000+ yds last year and a boatload of TDs, but he only topped 80 yd in 5 games and I would argue that he benefitted on his TDs from an offense that moves the ball by throwing mostly underneath and moving the chains...lots of "1st and goal from the 2" scores.

MITM's picture

Fair enough, but paired with Montgomery all we would need out of him is to be the one trick horse, not pony, that he is.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

We're projecting a lot with Monty based on 71 carries or whatever the number is. I am not nearly as ready to figure on Monty carrying the ball 245 times in 2017. I viewed him as a 50/50 ball carrier with another quality HB. Blount sucks. Christine Michael has talent, but zip for vision and trouble with the playbook.

Another draft need or area for TT to be opportunistic with the hope that the waiver wire and a carousel of nonentities don't parade through GB like last season.

DesertPackFan's picture

Kevin Minter was terrible in AZ, far worse than anything we got from Ryan, Martinez and Thomas. Thats why he was allowed to leave, maybe asked to leave... THey signed a 37 yr old Karlos Dansby to replace him for Gods sake!

Barwin was the only one that would have helped the Packers much. Seems pretty clear he was more concerned about starting than playing as a rotational player on a winning team, since he signed w/ LA, where he won't be involved in winning much.

MITM's picture

I know that you've said in the past that you usually catch the majority of or all of the Cardinal games. Admittedly I only caught them play their nationally televised games, but whenever I did Minter seemed to play well. I dont see how he was "far worse" than our trio. I'd say far worse is more than a bit of a stretch. He would come cheap and start imo, although I do think Martinez takes a huge step for us this year.

MITM's picture

I'm also just referencing Minters play this past season only. Also, i love Zach Brown but I initially thought Minter would be the cheaper add as Brown is certainly the better player.

Jimbo1's picture

I agree the only real loss was Lang. Peppers added something but was really slowing down. Tretter was good but so injured.

Bennett was an upgrade over Cook. Hyde only hit the field because of injury. Jones was next to nothing out there.

Lacey really doesn't fit into our offense. He is not explosive and is not a threat in the passing game.

MarkinMadison's picture

I think the bottom is about to fall out for Peppers. Tretter could not stay heAlthy or he would have already been a starter. Loved Lacy but he hasn't been available and effective the last two years.

Lang was a warrior and will be missed, but history has largely proven TT right about older linemen. And honestly if you are willing to spend a 1st you can get a top prospect at the position who can start from day one.

You can argue for Jones and Hyde but can the defense really get better with the same players? If the Packers pick up a LB I think Jones will not be missed that much. And with House everyone else bumps down a spot, and I don't think he will be as missed as some fear.

Point Packer's picture

O-line: downgraded
WR/TE: steady
RB: downgraded
QB: steady

D-line: downgraded
CB: steady
Safety: steady
OLB: downgraded
ILB: steady

GB did not improve one position in FA. In fact, four position groups have gotten worse. Better be a hell of a draft.

MITM's picture

God forbid you speak the truth in a comment on this site, thumbs down away. Im the thumbs up by the way because nothing you said wasnt accurate.

Ryan Graham's picture

I gave the thumbs down, I'll own it. Some of it was true, no doubt about it. There's some truth to almost every comment posted. But to not recognize the additions of Martellus Bennett and Lance Kendricks as upgrades and even the addition of House as a depth upgrade at the very least, to me it just sounds like Point Packer has already called this team a lost cause. And I've noticed this tone in a number of comments. Correct me if I'm wrong, PP. Do you believe this team has a fighters chance? And if not then why? No disrespect just trying to pick your brain.

zerotolerance's picture

Better to say 'all that you say is accurate'. Thanks.

MITM's picture

So smart you are, I'm very proud of you!

Rossonero's picture

Point Packer: I thought you said the other day that Eddie Lacy was worthless, but today you say that the RB position was downgraded? Please explain.

Point Packer's picture

After his last injury and subsequent weight issues, Lacy is generally worthless and not worth anywhere near the 5.5 million the Seaturds gave him.

I called WR/TE a wash due to how good a healthy Jared Cook was. Perhaps we have a bit of depth there now and it warranted my recognition of a slight upgrade.

Hard to call the House addition an upgrade at CB, given it was coupled with the loss of Hyde, our best cover corner the last half of the year.

Due I think the season is over? No, GB has Aaron Rodgers and thus, has a chance at a SB every year. My point, Ted has done nothing to surround him with a team that ends the season hoisting the Lombardi Trophy. Belichick on the other hand added five, count em five, day one starters during FA. GB ? Bennett and a guy who was cut by the Jaguars..

akeemthedream's picture

I bet Lacy ends up having more rushing yards and touchdowns than any Packer "running back" next season.

JacFrost's picture

Ill be at 267 his ankles hold up for 3 games tops. Everyone forgets he has asthma and will be playing in a climate with a lot of mosture and dampness. Good luck with that and being over weight. Hope his heart holds up?

Ryan Graham's picture

Fair enough all justified conclusions. I may not agree entirely, but it's good to bounce thoughts back and forth. I do agree on Lacy, if he maintains his health for 16, and that's a big if, he will probably have better numbers but I think the Packers will be more successful without him and the distractions he can bring at times with his health issues. And a 16 game season is a Big if, even if he is splitting time.

Belichick is just, he's just the best in the world at his job in any sport. And that's just it, he's never satisfied. It's what separates him from everyone else in the business. We may never see a guy like this again

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I think it would be hard to reach any other conclusion: more talent left GB during FA so far, repeat, so far, than has come in. While I am a little down about that, it is possible that more arrives. I'd also argue that with a little luck most of the talent that left won't hurt as much as might be expected.

Hyde really wasn't very good. Miss him on PR and as back-up FS, and depth. With good health and a little development of rookies from last year, he won't be unduly missed. We will miss Lang, but a serviceable replacement might be on the roster already. Miss Tretter as a back-up center. If Lindsay stays healthy, we won't miss Tretter. If Linsley misses time, yeah, miss him a lot. We will miss the 2016 Peppers, but not the 2017 Peppers. We will miss Datone. Doubt there is a replacement on the roster - I don't think Elliott can do it. We won't miss Cook. Not sure about Lacy - which is why I didn't want to give him any money. We will miss what he might have brought - no idea which way his career is headed.

Rossonero's picture

Point Packer: Unless I'm missing something, that still does not explain why you said the RB position was downgraded. If it was downgraded, then you obviously saw some value to Eddie Lacy.

All you did was merely repeat previous comments that he's worthless. If you still think he's worthless, then I would think you'd have the RB position as being upgraded, not downgraded.

Point Packer's picture

Oh, and nice to see someone rightly label Datone Jones a bust. I've been saying it for a couple years, but the extreme blind homers always cite his "disruptiveness" (key on Datone during 2016 playoff run and then call him "disruptive", I dare you).

Lot of first round busts during Ted's tenure. He doesn't hit on Rodgers, he would have been gone years ago.

4thand1's picture

So what about the later round gems? 1st round picks are always a gamble because so much is expected of them.

dobber's picture

Cook to the Raiders: 2 yr/$12.2M. About half guaranteed.

DesertPackFan's picture

Too bad he got too greedy dealing w/ the Packers. From what I read, the Packers didn't go over 7M per and that wasn't enough for Cook. I think his agents screwed the pooch.

Now he signs for less than Bennett got and a shorter contract too boot. Carr is a good young QB, but he's no Rodgers!

Mags's picture

Barwin to the Rams: 1 yr/ 6.5 M max value of deal.

dobber's picture

I won't say it...but I guess I just said it...

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Do tell? I haven't a clue as to what you mean.

dobber's picture

I said yesterday that Barwin wasn't going to leave LA without a contract. Not that I had any special inside info, just that LA was a team transitioning to the 3-4 and needing an OLB pretty badly. Barwin's been on the market for awhile and I wouldn't be surprised if he was starting to get a little antsy.

DesertPackFan's picture

We'll never know what the Packers offered, but that seems like a fair amount and would have given him that on a 2 or 3 yr deal. I'm guessing he wanted a starting job instead of being in a rotation on a winning team. The Rams aren't going to win anything in the next couple years. Goff isn't a starting NFL QB IMO.

stockholder's picture

Things happen for a reason. It's not just the money sometimes. But most of these guys are going to blame the Packers. The Free agency period is like being drafted again. Either your wanted or not. These guys need to act like men. Their not VIPs. And the spot light puts them in I'm a "VIP". Their workers that have to look in the mirror. If they were important to the packers , they would have signed them. The biggest hurt is the packers invested time in them. It's time gone now. They didn't achieve what was expected of them. (A Ring) It became about the money and open wounds now. Datone Jones was not treated right. He tried to do what they asked. If one player has the right to be bitter, it's Jones. Good Luck to Him and the Packers.

Ryan Graham's picture

I feel for Datone in a way. He was a misfit in this system, and the defensive staff didn't know how to use him. It didn't help that his position changed from week to week. I think he could have been more useful in a 4-3 system, and I think he will be eventually. Probably not in Minnesota on a one year deal though...he'd have to have someone like Griffen or Robison go down to get some significant reps.

I hate to call him a bust not know how good he could have been if he were drafted by the right team, but it was a bad pick for Ted to make in our scheme. He needs some help in recognizing the proper talent for the system they got. I'm getting a little to close to ranting about the current situation with Capers and management so I'm gonna stop here before I work myself up

blue eyes's picture

Barwin is a Ram, thank god now everyone in here can stop talking about him like he's the second coming of the minister of defense.
So how about that Zach Brown guy younger, faster, a tackling machine and got taught by Dick Lebeau in 3-4 d. Capers and Lebeau used to work together in Steel town. This is the ilb Capers has been waiting for!
Signing Brown would make way more cents than Barwin. Oh and Zach went to the pro bowl last year.

Since '61's picture

This is all about the process. Speaking for myself I won't be able to determine which parts of the teams have been improved or not until June at the earliest and even then I'll probably wait until we get through training camp and the pre-season games to see who is actually on the roster and healthy for the season opener. Until then we still have the draft, UDFAs, players who are released or cut and possibly more FAs. I do believe that TE is improved with Bennett/Kendricks better than Cooks/R. Rodgers. CB is slightly improved with House. OL is TBD, RBs are TBD, and OLB is TBD. We can improve CBs, RBs and OLBs via the draft. We can find an OG between the players we have, the draft and players cut during the pre-season. DL is more difficult because rookies need time and no one releases good DLs. The reality is that we know the offense will be the strength of the team again and one of the best in the league. The defense will be the big question mark again. How much of a question we won't know until we learn who's playing defense. It's March, let the process continue before coming to conclusions and criticism. Thanks, Since '61

zerotolerance's picture

Always a pleasure to read your contributions. Thanks.

Ryan Graham's picture

Truly 61, I am a fan of what you put up. Hit it on the head yet again

Since '61's picture

Zero and Ryan - I appreciate both of you for taking the time to provide supportive comments. I enjoy reading your posts as well. Thanks, Since '61

greenngold's picture

Time will tell if we lost a lot or a little. In either case it is an indictment of the organization as a whole. Either Ted is drafting mediocre players, or they are good players that our coaching staff can't put in a position to succeed. Little doubt that the offense will be among the best again, but to play devils advocate - what happens if Bennett blows out a knee? We are now stuck with a couple of role players at tight end, a BIG BIG if at running back, and in all probability, a weaker offensive line. #12 can only do so much... and we all saw what happened when he tried to do too much at points last year. Going to the other side of the ball, looking at the depth chart sends shivers up my spine. Face it - the defense was bad last year. At times, historically so. Just how are they going to improve to even a modicum to mediocrity? Is CMIII going to regain the magic? Highly doubtful. Is the god-awful secondary going to improve at all? Does anyone really think Fackrell and Elliot will turn into difference makers this year? Even more disconcerting is that, with the exception of House, NOTHING has been done to improve the mess that is our defense. But the biggest fear I have is that the men in control (read Thompson and McCarthy) have lost this team? Some of the comments made by a couple of guys that signed elsewhere kind of point to that. I'm usually an optimist - really I am. I've always been on TT's side, and at least luke-warm to coach Mike, but now? I just don't know. Can someone PLEASE talk me down off the ledge?

Ryan Graham's picture

I see House making a bigger difference in that secondary than most of us fans realize. Look back at how awesome the secondary was just 3 or 4 years ago. Burnett, Charles, Tramon, Sam Shields. That was a stellar unit right? Casey Heyward and Davon House were back ups. House had a really good year in 2015 with Jax. Gus Bradley had no control over an undisciplined team and Davon wanted no part of it. To be clear he wasn't a cut due to a lack of talent, it was a cap cut. He's not gonna have 7 or 8 interceptions but he's gonna run some decent man coverage. The younger corners will have less on their plate making their jobs more manageable covering Y and Z recievers. They also all did some serious on the job training last year as well, all while battling their own injuries themselves. To me, that speaks volumes to put the team first the way they did last year. They are gonna bounce back as a unit.

Ted's probably gonna go after an outside backer and a corner early for depth purposes, and he'll probably sign another backer from FA before June cuts period ends. Gonna get an OL RB and WR somewhere in there, and then a DT I would think as well. Other than that it's BPA

The running back situation will be quite alright. This class is deep and a serviceable back to play alongside Montgomery and Rip will be had in the draft. The right guard position will be filled b y someone other than Barclay. Martellus is a highly reliable tight end who doesn't miss much time even if he has to play hurt. Ted always has a plan when it comes to the Offensive line.

JLab3's picture

If TT and Bill Bellichick swapped positions I'm not so sure the roster as it stands would look much different. For the most part the guys they let go were either trending toward too costly or underperformers and they've got important contracts next year and a boatload in 2019. With that said I'm reeeely going to miss the pure entertainment value of Eddie Lacy.

pooch's picture

problem is no upgrade on defense,so we draft 4 more stiffs from Pac 10

Lphill's picture

Well Clairborne signed and I read Barwin signing with Rams so who is left to sign to help the defense?

JJtheTraveler's picture

Would a vet minimum for AP, loaded with incentives be worth it?? Just think if he could be used in the post season. What an offense we'd have.

zerotolerance's picture

He's done and a child beater. I'm sure either ESPN or NFL Network will hire him.

croatpackfan's picture

Listen, answer is simple: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
The end!

Since '61's picture

I would be both shocked and very disappointed if the Packers signed AP for any reason and for any amount or length of time. As a player I think he's done and as a man even worse. Case closed. Thanks, Since '61

pooch's picture

The turd lost Conner going to Rams

DesertPackFan's picture

It would seem Barwin was more interested in a starting job on a losing team, than a rotational position on a winning team.

Meant as a reply to pooch.

NitschkeFan's picture

A disappointment to me. Packers could have used Barwin and have plenty of cap space.

I can't figure who or what TT is waiting for? Top OLB's and CB's long gone. Packers have too many holes to fill via draft alone, especially where they are picking.

Lots of cap room and they haven't even done the easy parts like signing long snapper Goode.

Most of the money will be spent but on who? I try to stay optimistic but am feeling pretty down tonight. Really really wanted them to upgrade at LB which was very affordable compared to the free agent CB's.

UmpireMark's picture

I guess I've never understood that in major sports. If (let's say) the Packers had interest and offered similar cash amount, why play for the Rams vs. the Packers?

Maybe so, full time starter vs. rotational guy.

croatpackfan's picture

Maybe Income tax and weather issues? Small town issue? Maybe just do not like green colour? Oh, there is a lot what can be.
"To dance tango, you need both sides!"
And I think that is simple!

4zone's picture

Jones was not built for a 3-4, he's a 4-3 DE. TT has to quit drafting guys out of position and trying to make them fit.

Hyde is a Safety, not a CB. Again, out of position. Second, he was arguably your best CB last year and if he isn't worth keeping then what does that say of Randall and Rollins?

Lacy's reported interview weight of 267 is all I need to know. You don't gain that much weight simply by not exercising, that's diet folks. And if he's doesn't have the common sense to lay off the fatty foods, especially knowing he can't maintain a regular workout good riddance.

Letting both Tretter and Lang go was our biggest hit I think. A lot of good talent lost. Who fills in a center if Lindsley goes down now? Having said that, I think we would be OK by sliding Bulaga in to RG and Spriggs takes over at RT. We definitely need backups though, Barclay is not a long term solution there.

Signing House was a step, but not nearly enough.

We realistically needed two more TEs and TT did good there. Now if he could just add one, ONE upgrade on defense before, or after the draft we might see better results next year. If not, we need at least two defensive started from the draft, DT and CB.

We need to replace Guion ASAP. Can't wait for his next suspension.

croatpackfan's picture

"Hyde is a Safety, not a CB. Again, out of position. Second, he was arguably your best CB last year..."
Is this some kind of oxymoron?

Turophile's picture

People get so tied up in the individuals they end up chasing the wrong fox. What you think of the guys lost is almost irrelevant.

However you shade it, the Packers lost 9 significant positions, four starters and five spot starters/key backups. Shields, Lacy, Lang, Cook (starters), and Tretter, Starks, Hyde, Peppers, D.Jones. They ALL must be replaced.

Cook and Starks positions are already in house with Montgomery and Bennett. You could argue House is the replacement for Hyde. You still need six more replacements........... and expecting the draft to deal with that is wishful thinking, never mind rookie FA.

Since '61's picture

Turo - I agree in that I would have preferred to keep either Lang or Tretter but TT was not going to match the offers they both received and he was correct in each case. We'll find a decent guard between the players we have, the draft, upcoming cuts and/or UDFAs.
Shields unfortunately is done. He should not play again for the benefit of his long term health and his family.
Time to move on from Starks with fresh legs, we'll find an RB via the draft or UDFAs
Cook, we already have signed better players at TE.
Lacy - the Packers made an offer but he decided on the Seachickens. Besides why keep a player who is not dedicated to himself or his team mates to maintain himself in playing shape? Again, he can and will be replaced with younger and fresher legs.
I liked Hyde's knack for making plays but he was slow and now he's overpaid.
Peppers - no longer effective. Will be replaced with younger and fresher legs.
D. Jones - I had high hopes when they drafted Jones, but he never really showed us much and it's better to move on.
We won't know how this all plays out until we get through training camp and the pre-season games. But with the exception of Lang/Tretter I look at this as an opportunity to for the Packers to evolve, hopefully for the better, at each of these positions (already better at TE). The only thing we can be certain of is that change is coming. The velocity and direction of the changes is the variable. Thanks, Since '61

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