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Report: Packers Close To Re-signing Raji To One Year Deal

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Report: Packers Close To Re-signing Raji To One Year Deal

From Schefter:

 

As nearly every Packers fan knows, the Packers recently offered Raji a long-term deal which featured an $8 million per year salary, an offer which Raji rejected.

It will be interesting to see both what the money is on this one year deal and, more importantly, which B.J. Raji shows up. The former ninth overall pick has been a decent-sized disappointment since being selected out of Boston College, with 2013 being arguably his worst year as a pro.

UPDATE: Interestingly enough, shortly after this posted, two sources contacted me with essentially the same message. To quote one "Not so fast on Raji...."

Sounds like Schefter may have uncharacteristically jumped the gun here. Stay tuned.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (97) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Mark in Montana's picture

Seems like this would be a good strategy for both sides. Raji gets a second chance to impress before hitting the open market, and the Pack gets another year to evaluate Boyd's development while having a veteran to stabilize things.

Nick Perry's picture

Sign him, play him only at NT and he'll play close to a level he did in 2010 I'd bet, money does that to people. That could prove to be quite beneficial for both sides.

RC Packer Fan's picture

exactly right.

He MUST play NT. That is what they drafted him for.

James C's picture

Why would moving him back to NT change anything? According to Pro Football Focus, he was destroyed by the running game in 2013, ranking dead last for 3-4 defensive ends against the rush. If he couldn't stop the run as a DE, what makes you think he can do it as a NT where he would face more double teams?

ArodMoney's picture

Completely different positions in what they are asked to do. Also with his length he's much better suited against guards and centers than tackles.

James C's picture

I doubt they asked him to do more then eat up blockers as a DE. If not, it makes his numbers look even worse then what they are; 0 sacks it 39 games as a DE and only 17 tackles last season. The fact about his lack of length and struggling against guards and tackles might be true, but he'll still have to deal with those guards plus a center more often then not.

Evan's picture

All I know is he had an all-time great season at NT in 2010.

I think moving him back there and hoping he can recapture some of that success is more than worth a $4 million bet.

Hank Scorpio's picture

Given the makeup of their current DL, you'll get your wish. As things sit now, it looks like Daniels, Jones and Worthy rotating at DE with Raji & Boyd on the nose. That is, assuming the Shefter report is correct.

And then we'll see if Raji is better on the nose or if it is a matter of Raji's lack of desire to play in a 3-4 system--as I believe.

If Raji does re-sign, I'm good with adding a draft pick and calling the DL good to go. 6 guys for a 3 man front is enough. Especially given that Capers plays so much 2 man front in nickel situations.

That's not to say I would object to more vet help at DL. I just don't think it would be a major need. But then again, I'm not down on Jones and Worthy, like many Packer fans are.

Evan's picture

"... or if it is a matter of Raji’s lack of desire to play in a 3-4 system–as I believe."

Then why would he re-sign with the Packers? He could get a 1-year deal pretty much anywhere, I'd imagine.

Hank Scorpio's picture

I dunno. Raji is a strange case to me. Maybe it's a general lack of motivation and not really about the 3-4.

I guess I was more saying I'm not sure I buy into the whole "He stinks as a 3-4 DE but is awesome as a 3-4 NT" thing. But I sure don't know what the problem with the guy really is. I just know it isn't that he lacks the talent to excel.

Evan's picture

I'm not sure it's that simple either. But I do think it's worth $4 mil to find out.

Hank Scorpio's picture

Yeah, that's a very good way to say it, Evan. I agree.

mark's picture

I think Johnny Jolly comes back as well.

Nononsense's picture

Its not the 3-4 that's the problem its the way Capers plays his players in the 3-4 that's the problem.

Dom pretty much only allows his DL guys to bull rush when he allows them to rush at all. He wants to collapse the pocket around the QB more than collapsing the QB himself.

My hope is that with MM more involved on D we get to see more freedom to attack for the d-line and allow them to vary their attacks with different pass rush moves.

Its not rocket science, BJ Raji is not meant to hold up blockers and 2 gap. He is a penetrator, allow him to shoot upfield and attack, that's his strength. This was the case when he was drafted and that is still the case now.

That's the problem in a nutshell though, Capers is either unwilling or unable to adjust his scheme to the strengths of his players and im sick of it.

So is McCarthy it seems.

zeke's picture

i'm going to go out on a limb and guess it's for something less than $8 million.

Jordan's picture

We'll never really know the real story, but usually when you see stories in media about salary (like 8 Million), they never mention guaranteed money. Guaranteed money is very important in negotiations and usually the sticking point.

Bird in the hand or two in the bush type of stuff.

denniseckersley's picture

guaranteed money is irrelevant for a one year deal

Bobby D's picture

Hope this is a bad dream. If true, this clearly defines TT and his obsession relative to holding on to his "guys" and especially if they happened to be a top 10 pick. Raji sleep walked thru his contract year and now realizes nobody's going to be knocking his door down. He's done zip since '10. Not an off year in '13, he ate his lazy ass off the radar.The defense sucks, we let Shields walk and are now probably going to spend in the neighborhood of $5-$6 million of our defense rescue funds on this guy? Why don't we give Jerron another shot while we're at it.

Nick Perry's picture

I have a feeling Bobby that if he plays just at NT, he'll have at least a decent year. Money is a hell of a motivator. Stroh always has mentioned they line him up at DE most of the time and it's true. Raji's best position at NT and with Daniels coming on and Datone who I still think will make that HUGE year 2 leap, Raji just might play lose to the 2010 version. I want Shields back too, but it all starts with the front 7. The Packers had a strong front 7 in 2010 and won a SB and were 5th in total defense. I still think Chris Clemons can be had and not break the bank at Safety, and Mosley drops to 21. Well in a perfect world anyways.

Bobby D's picture

I agree 100% on the money motivation theory. That's exactly what's so concerning about BJ. Last year he was in a position to sign the one big contract all pros dream about. Instead he had his worst year and seemed disinterested. If not then, why now?

Nick Perry's picture

LOL...That true as well. But something has Raji even considering a 1 year deal, if it is in fact true. Agents put feelers out there to see the interest by other teams. They have a idea so teams may not have a lot of interest in B.J. after last year, or the money he's hearing B.J. may expect is really low. Lets face it, he sucked last year.

denniseckersley's picture

If money was a significant motivator than he would have played his ass off last season.

Hank Scorpio's picture

Shields is not signed with someone else yet.

Why do people insist on saying he has?

Evan's picture

Chicken littles.

Bobby D's picture

Three reasons he's gone...warm weather, Drew Slimenhaus and no state sales tax. He can be replaced....hopefully not by a rookie or street guy. Lots of FA cb's that an make fiscal sense. Somebody who has a little experience covering the monsters in the NFC north would be nice

gbslapshot's picture

I do not understand why people feel like Hayward can not play on the outside. When he was healthy his rookie year he was the top rated CB in the whole NFL according to profootballfocus. I realize that he was playing slot then but I have seen nothing from him that would make me feel like he can not go outside and have success.

ATS's picture

Slow.

gbslapshot's picture

I have no idea where you people get the idea that Hayward is slow. Hayward ran a 4.49 at the combine.
Here is the 40 time for a few players you may have heard of....
Charles Woodson - 4.44
Nnamdi Asomugha - 4.45
Charles Tillman - 4.49
Richard Sherman - 4.56
Here are some of the fastest 40 times by cornerbacks in nfl history by guys you may not know....
DeMarcus Van Dyke - 4.28
Stanford Routt - 4.29
Fabian Washington - 4.29
Darrent Williams - 4.30

Now please tell me how Casey Hayward is too slow to play outside again....

Jordan's picture

Gbslapshot,

Stat sheets and blogs won't tell you if heyward is too slow to play outside. You've got to use your own two eyes. He's too slow. It's as plain as day.

The packers can give him safety help, but the fewer liabilities in coverage you have on the field, the better the D will be. Heyward would be a liability.

gbslapshot's picture

I suppose we will have to agree to disagree.

Hank Scorpio's picture

Pittsburgh has regularly used CBs that are less than stellar. They are too slow, too small or just plain not very good.

The only thing that seems to make a big difference with their pass defense is whether Troy Polamalu is wrecking havoc or not.

TommyG's picture

and you meant no income tax. Besides oregon, who else has no sales tax?

fish and crane's picture

some place with uneducated children and lousy roads or a hell of a lot of full hotel rooms.

Stroh's picture

I believe Florida has no state income tax.

zeke's picture

I think it's a bit misleading, as states with no income tax (Washington, for example) typically make up for that by having higher sales and property taxes. Oregon has no sales tax, but they do have income, property, and inheritance taxes, along with other fees on services. Bottom line is that the states find a way to get their money, although it differs as to how.

Except Alaska, but Putin will have them back "home" soon so not to worry.

Nick Perry's picture

Florida, Texas and Washington. Every home game a player play there he doesn't have to pay state taxes. Same with visiting players. For example, when the Packers beat the Steelers in SB45 no state tax was taken from that game check.

Jordan's picture

Wow. A one year deal pretty much says it all.
I'm going to assume it will be guaranteed if it happens.

Maybe Raji talked to cliff avril about his experience.

Brooklyn81's picture

Well I guess this is our big FA signing! Not a fan of this but hopefully it works out. I still hope we try to get Joseph from the Giants

Stroh's picture

It'll be interesting to see if they have him play NT for a change. I'm sure playing his natural NT position, instead of DE, would actually improve his play for a change.

RC Packer Fan's picture

I hope they do. He is a NT. His best year was when he played NT.

I hope they play him there.

Jordan's picture

I think the ideal situation for the Packers is to have a 21 point lead so they don't have to have so many expensive one dimensional fat run stoppers. They need to force teams to pass to play catchup ball by getting a lead.

Then bring out D jones, worthy, Daniels, Matthews and Perry to put pressure on QB and force turnovers.

In a perfect packer world, Raji would rarely be on the field.

Stroh's picture

Isn't being up by 21 points in the 1st qtr ALWAY ideal?!

Jordan's picture

Lol. More like Raji has to play a lot in first quarter. Some in second quarter. And shuts er down at halftime and gets him a pizza.

I thought we had a top 5 offense? That shouldn't be too difficult for a top 5 offense most weeks. Should it?

I'd even settle for a 14 point lead. Or how about any lead or lack of slow offensive start?

gbslapshot's picture

We have a top 5 offense...but unfortunately the team we are facing is full of pro football players also.

Evan's picture

Very interesting development. Can't find too much to fault with a 1-year deal.

KurtMc's picture

A one year deal is sweet, but if Capers doesn't adjust, what then?

Does this also mean TT isn't interested in looking at FA help on the D line?

Picket is winding down and Jones hasn't shown up yet.

Sportspack's picture

It doesn't matter if you line up at DE or NT if you don't stick your nose in the action. This guy was the definition of "the last man standing" play after play. If you suck in a contract year I don't think you should get a do-over. Hope this doesn't happen!

Hank Scorpio's picture

I agree that it would have been better to just move on from Raji. He was playing for greed and glory and neither motivated him to excel.

But a one year deal beats a long term one.

Bert's picture

I agree 100%. In position or out-of-position doesn't matter. No excuse for flat out lack of hustle on a consistent basis. I don't like the idea of rewarding a guy for being a boat anchor. But then again we're not exactly in a great positon to be too choosey in that the defensive boat has enough leaks to plug.

James C's picture

Completely agree sportspack. He was destroyed by the running game in 2013, ranking dead last in Pro Football Focus' ratings for 3-4 defensive ends against the rush. Why would moving him to NT, where he'd face more double teams, make him better against the run? We should just move on from him IMO.

Morgan Mundane's picture

This either goes to three things IMHO: poor player evaluation. They think he is better than the numbers he shows. Or again its the Ted T, if I can keep this guy and he is cheap, that's a plus, or, MM hates to practice. If he can work with the same guys it makes those walk arounds work.
Either way, mediocrity is alive and well in Packer land. Unfortunately our counterparts in the NFC North are not standing pat and keeping retreads. Jared Allen, Hester, Possibly Peppers, are all on the out, were getting younger and more talented mode.

zeke's picture

Or, it could be that you're a moron.

mark in montana's picture

This actually seems closer to a blowhard opinion than a humble opinion.

@VJ_Ostrowski's picture

If you're seriously going to sit here and laud the decision-making of our division rivals, whom we have pretty consistently out-lapped in the Aaron Rodgers era, then there's no reaching you.

Hank Scorpio's picture

How have Chicago or Minnesota gotten more talented this offseason? The league year hasn't started yet.

4thand1's picture

What a turd, MM is on record saying many times, he doesn't like the lack of practice in the CBA and especially so little padded practices. MM HATER^^^^^^

Jordan's picture

I think the packers have had less in the form of live tackling than most teams. But maybe that's changed recently. I dunno.

It's ted Thompson that hates packers vs packers scrimmage. That goes back to his Bum Phillips days.

So I guess it would be better to blame TT and Bum than MM. ;)

benagain's picture

2014 53 man depth chart
[TRADE: Scott Tolzien(QB, 23pts), Round3Pick21(165), Round6pick21(19) = 207pts } for { Cleveland's Round4pick6(92), Round4pick27(49), Round5pick5(40), Round6pick4(26)= 207pts]
QB: Rodgers, Flynn(2year), Connor Shaw(Round5pick21)
RB: Lacey, DuJuan, Franklin, Devin Hester(KR, 3year)
FB: Jay Prosch(Round4pick27)
WR: Cobb, Jordy, Boykin, Jeff Janis(Compensatory4th), Harper
TE: Quarless(3year), Colt Lyerla(Round6Pick4), Stoneburner, Bostick
OL: Bakhtiari, Sitton, EDS(2year), Lang, Bulaga, Barclay, Tretter, Sharrod
DL: Neal(3year), Daniels, Datone, Raji(1year), Boyd, Justin Ellis(Round4pick21), Zak Kerr(compensatory6th), Allen Beau(Round7pick21)
LB: Perry(LOLB), AJ Hawk(ILB), [Shazier/VanNoy(Round2pick21)], Matthews(ROLB), Brad Jones, Mulumba, Sam Barrington
CB: Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie(4years), [Gilbert/Verrett(Round1pick21)], Heyward, Davon, Phillip Gaines(Round4pick6)
S: Burnett, Micah Hyde, Sean Richardson, Desman Southward(Round4pick27), Dontae Johnson(Round5pick5)
ST: Goode, Crosby, Masthay

RC Packer Fan's picture

Just a few notes.
You finally decided to keep Franklin over trading for James?

Its Beau Allen, not Allen Beau...

I like them drafting Connor Shaw later. I think he will be a good developmental QB.

Drealyn Williams's picture

Don't forget about that list of CBs. Ughhh!

Evan's picture

Nagler is throwing cold water all over this on twitter.

@Aaron_Nagler And like clockwork, two little birds (cue the music) tell me "Not so fast on Raji" Stay tuned...

@Aaron_Nagler And now I'm told the Packers haven't even offered Raji a deal. The plot thickens.

This from Silverstein is encouraging: RT @TomSilverstein One thing I know: they are trying to sell Raji on being a true NT.

RC Packer Fan's picture

I saw those as well...

So who do you trust more, Adam Schefter and his sources or Aaron Nagler and his?

hmmm.....

Evan's picture

Well, Adam Schefter lost some credibility with me when he said if he were the Packers he'd sign Jimmy Graham...so...

I do like that Silverstein tweet though about Raji playing nose.

Evan's picture

@Aaron_Nagler Raji offer is legit. @TomSilverstein reports Packers offered one and two year deals: http://tinyurl.com/lrd473h

Evan's picture

1 year, $4 million.

Strikes me as a great deal for the Packers.

The TKstinator's picture

I would think so too.
All signings are evaluated on risk vs reward.

KennyPayne's picture

Well, when it was reported that TT would sign up to 5 free agents this offseason, it looks like it was on the mark ... Banjo, Raji make 2 thus far.

Wonder if Marshall Newhouse and M.D. Jennings are far behind.

Bert's picture

Hahaha!! He did sign Chase Thomas a while back. There are your 5. Thanks for the laugh.

ATS's picture

Didn't he sign some RB to?
Bell?

ray nichkee's picture

It was a fullback. A somoan name I think. I don't want to butcher his name because he ain't like arlo but I think it was 3 sylables that rhyme. You can't count resigning as signing free agents. Its not like they are bringing in new people. Right now I think the pack has 2 newbies.

Nick Perry's picture

OMG, PLEASE NO!

Cole's picture

He's terrible. Four million is disgusting for what he offers.

Greenville's picture

I dont like this its makes no sense just move on damn. One year not gonna prove anything I wouldn't trust the guy foreal.

ray nichkee's picture

BREAKING NEWS: the jaguars just signed B J Raji as a kick/punt return specialist. You guys are off the hook now. They must have seen something in his interception return for a touchdown.

BradHTX's picture

The two highest paid 3-4 NTs, BAL's Ngata and NE's Wilfork, are making $8.5M and $7.5M respectively this year. If they move Raji exclusively to NT where he excelled in the past and stop trying to make him a DE, this is a pretty good deal. Is he as good as Ngata/Wilfork? Last season, not even close, but in '10 was he half as good as them? Better than that. To me, this is a pretty good "show us if you still have it" deal. Small risk, potentially bigger reward. At $8M, no, but at $4M, yes.

packeraaron's picture

I agree his best position is at NT, but let's slow down on him being better than Ngata and Wilfork.

Bert's picture

If he doesn't move his fat ass he's not better than most anybody.

BradHTX's picture

Aaron, exactly the opposite of my point! Raji ISN'T in the same category as Ngata/Wilfork. He wasn't worth the $8M originally offered. But $4M for one year is fair if he can still play NT at his '10 level. In '10 he was better than half as good as them.

PacMan's picture

Get Raji. Now sign Hester to a one year deal as a return man. Sign a one year deal on a safety. Win the SB. Give the young guys another year to mature. Win more SB's.

MarkinMadison's picture

They can't fill all of the holes through the draft in one year. $4M for Raji for one year feels like a fair deal to me. If the NT focus works out and he excells, with the cap going up, they might be able to keep him after next year. If not, then they can adress the need in the 2015 draft.

gary's picture

If they can sign him for a 4 million dollar deal that would be great. Keep a veteran presence in the locker room, and at NT he should improve his overall play.

Buster's picture

He may end up signing a short contract of 1-2 years but not with the Pack. A short contract almost has to be on a 4-3 defense. I just don't think he'd want to take any chance that he'd be playing on the end anymore, ever.

Mojo's picture

Without reading the other posts here, has anyone explained why Raji would turn down a multi $8mil per year deal earlier this year, only to sign for $4 or $5 mil for one year? From Raji's standpoint none of this makes sense. Especially since this was his FA year and he must prove he's worth a longer contract all over again.

Does he have the worst agent ever, or did he spurn his advice and grossly miscalculate the need for his services.

Anyway, this whole thing from Raji's perspective is a head-scratcher to me. If he wanted out of the 3-4 then why would he resign at all? Need some answers.

Jordan's picture

Mojo,

My opinion.

All the news reports are coming from Raji's agent. His agent is talking to the press. The packers wouldn't discuss any of this with media.

His agent may not be telling the entire truth or twisting the truth to benefit his client.

Thus far, he is trying to portray Raji as someone that the packers want to sign. And through the media, he is letting other teams know that.

Most teams around the league laughed at paying Raji 8 million and 20 million guaranteed. And Raji knows they laughed, because his agent told him.

So basically the journal sentinel is the middleman for negotiations with other teams because technically Raji's agent can't talk to other teams yet. But Tom Silverstein can. It's an unethical loophole. But journal sentinel gets a story and Raji's agent gets feedback from other teams (through Silverstein).

Stroh's picture

Asked and answered...

http://espn.go.com/blog/green-bay-packers/post/_/id/8037/examining-why-r...

Sorry I was too lazy to explain it all. Read for yourself.

Jordan's picture

Unlikely Raji turned down 8 million last season.

My guess is the packers floated those numbers to raji's agent as to what they'd be willing to pay Raji if he performed. Highly unlikely they were in the form of a written contract. Or even if it was a written contract, it probably had a stipulation that it must meet TT's approval to be valid.

It was a carrot-stick type of thing. And it didn't work considering Raji had an unremarkable season.

Most of these agents are lawyers. They act like any lawyer and try to use the media and leaks to their advantage. They're not concerned about confusing fans. They're concerned about their fiduciary duties to their client and giving him the best possible advice. ....and getting him the best possible deal.

TommyG's picture

I just saw this while watching the Super Bowl XLV replay today.

Raji must've had a dose of reality and found out that his stock value is very low.

He better be cheap though if TT is going to allow this.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

You guy's follow this Raji thing. I always thought he was a good player. I know he didn't have a good year last year. What is the thinking of a 3-4 verses 4-3. Probably a stupid question.

ray nichkee's picture

Sometimes when you are a big guy you spend your time eating up blocks. Unless you get a penalty your name isn't mentioned much. I'm guessing after the run defense went downhill last season raji is taking a lot of the blame. I think I read he played the most snaps on the line last year (59%). I like the idea a having the big guys rotate and stay fresh. To bad there isn't more big guys to plug in and compete with eachother.

4thand1's picture

TT MO, you can never have enough big guys.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

Can't find the thread for this. ESPN is saying, that USA TODAY is reporting that Darin Sharper admitted to friends, that the sex in N.O. was non-consensual. They have reported that Sharper, who is due in court tomorrow on an extradition hearing, will fight extradition to N.O. According to USA TODAY, Police in N.O. want to bring Sharper there to face these charges. Again through ESPN, USA Today has Reported that the N.O. Police, have called Sharper a Menace to Society, & want to keep him Locked UP.

HUMP's picture

raji 1yr 4 mil,at nose would be smart.even though he has underachieved,he has God given ability.so roll the dice on a 1yr. What pisses me off about thompson is that; he refuses to explore options at position of weakness. DeQwell Jackson just signed 4 yr 22 mil with colts. Why wouldnt thompson at least bring the guy in like the 5 other teams who needed inside linebacker help? We need help there sooo bad and Jackson for 5 mil yr is a FRCKN STEAL!! and we pay brad frkn jones 4mil?!!!!!WHAT TO FCK!!

ray nichkee's picture

I was on board to bring in jackson. That would have been huge. It was reported that he would only talk to 3 teams. He was at denver, indy, and I think miami was the other one. his presence alone would have made the whole position better. Let jones back up at both positions. He wasn't that bad at OLB.

Albert Lingerfeld's picture

Rumor is spreading on SI that Raji has or will reject the offer and look elsewhere beginning tonight. The other part is that the Raiders are interested. Kuhn and Jones also look to go fishing as well. Interesting, very interesting.

Stroh's picture

Lose them all and it wouldn't hurt a bit. Like to see Raji back at his NT position, but there's no sense of dread in losing him. Same w/ Kuhn, Jone, Neal et al... Only player I consider important is Shields! Quite looking for doom in everything! IIRC you were saying all season those players needed to be replaced.

I'm sure the Packers made a fair offer, and a few of them will be back. Much to your dismay, but then you'll change your tune again!

4thand1's picture

Hit the nail on the head. Remember, some people "can't handle the truth!"lmao.

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