Contract Details For Kevin King -Oink, Oink

The details for King's contract have surfaced.  King's deal is for one year at $5 million with $3.75 million fully guaranteed by way of a signing bonus, $1 million in base salary, $50,000 more virtually guaranteed due to a workout bonus, $200,000 as a game active bonus ($137,500 counts against the salary cap since he missed 5 games last year), and $1 million in unknown incentives.  It has four void years tacked on.  The contract looks like this according to Overthecap:

Yr. Base SB GA W/O Cap Dead Savings
'21 $1.0M $750K $200K $50K $1.937M $3.75M -$1.812M
'22 0 $750K     $3.00M $3.00M -$3.00M
'23 0 $750K          
'24 0 $750K          
    $750K          
Tot: $1.0M $3.75M $200K $50K $4,937,500    

King will become an unrestricted free agent in February of 2022, some 23 days prior to the start of the new 2022 league year.  At that time, the four remaining $750,000 prorations ($3 million total) will accelerate onto the cap, though mercifully it will not count against the 2021 cap, but the $3M will count against the 2022 salary cap as a dead money charge.  The Packers could extend the contract, I suppose, to prevent the acceleration.  The incentives do not count against the cap, as they are apparently deemed to be not-likely-to-earned.  The incentives could be almost anything since almost anything would be more than King accomplished in 2021.  If he has an incentive of $1 million for one interception, that would be considered for cap purposes not-likely-to-be-earned since he had zero in 2021.  Ditto for sacks and tackles for loss.  6 would be the magic number for passes defensed and 665 for snaps played.   

It would appear that the Packers believe the salary cap in 2022 will increase far more than most observers do.  The team does have more information than the media.  The salary cap has been increasing by $10 million per year now for some time, and most of that increase is driven by national TV broadcasting rights.  If the reports are accurate that the NFL's new agreements represent a 70% increase, then annual increases in the cap should be $17 million per year rather than $10 million.  That does not include any increases in gambling revenue from NFL stadiums or the new LA Stadium deal.  However, the new television deals do not start until 2022 for the Thursday night game package and not until 2023 for the other days and nights.  It is more complicated than that; click here for a good article by Jason Fitzgerald of OTC on what the salary cap might look like in the future.  He forecasts the cap exceeding $300 million for the 2027 season.

The Packers' 2022 cap liabilities have now reached $205.7M, not including Marcedes Lewis's deal and extensions for Davante Adams or the $13.4 million fifth-year option for Jaire Alexander.  Marques Valdes-Scantling and Lucas Patrick are other notable players who will be unrestricted free agents in 2022.  It is easy to see 2022 cap liabilities reaching $245M or more.  The Packers no doubt will trim back, but I do not see that many players who look like possible candidates for release.  Preston Smith ($12.5 million in cap savings) and Dean Lowry ($5.8 million) might fit that bill if they do not rebound in 2021, and the Packers are extremely likely to do something with the contract of Za'Darius Smith to reduce his $28.13 million 2022 cap number.

The rationale for using 4 void years largely eludes me.  Clearly, it greatly reduces the cap number for 2021.  I suppose that is the lipstick on this pig of a contract.  However, it exacerbates the problems building up for 2022 and beyond.  I have heard front office personnel intone that the Packers are trying to field the best team possible in 2021 while building for the future, but this contract seems laser-focused on 2021 to the exclusion of any consideration beyond the present.  I personally had been thinking about the present as being an unknown length of time that probably included a two to three year window while Rodgers is still very good to elite.  Now it looks like the present means the 2021 season.

Assuming for the moment that the Packers have roughly equal regard for winning in 2021 as they do for winning in 2022, it does not make any difference for the 2022 season whether King's cap number this year is $5 million or $1.9 million, after all.  The void years do provide the Packers with the opportunity to spend $3.1 million more than they otherwise would be able to on another player or player(s) for the 2021 season.  That makes using the void years a "win-now" move, or more specifically, a "win-in-2021-and-we-will-worry-about-2022-later" move.  It also leaves open GM Gutekunst's options for 2022, some of which could be transformative. [I can hear one person who posts in the comments laughing already.]

The Packers ending up with Kevin King is not that surprising. His price is surprising to me, even shocking.  That is largely a question of player evaluation and what the market was for cornerbacks in general and Kevin King in particular.  This is a quote from Pro Football Focus regarding King's attractiveness as a free agent:

"King has disappointed during his four years in Green Bay — the former second-rounder's highest-graded season was a 62.7 mark in 2019. He blew up the NFL scouting combine, running a 4.43 40 and posting 98th-percentile agility drills at 6-foot-3, but that agility has not shown up on the field, as King is often knocked off balance by good route runners. King has struggled mightily in zone coverage, ranking dead last in coverage grade since entering the league, and he’s been one of the worst tacklers in the league over the last two years. King has the size and athleticism to be effective on the vertical route tree, but he’s a reclamation project who likely needs a specific, limited role on his new team.

Contract Analysis: King’s elite measurables and draft status (33rd overall pick in 2017) will certainly work in his favor this offseason, and that could be the best way for King and his representation to pitch him as an option to interested teams. He has yet to put everything together in the NFL, but a change of scenery could go a long way.

Prediction: One year, $3.5 million. $1.5 million fully guaranteed at signing." 

As to the cornerback market, here is a table showing the recent signings of cornerbacks:

Player PFF AAV Snaps INTs PR Allwd MTK
Witherspoon 80.2 $4M 333 1 82.4 4.8%
Jason Verrett 77.6 $5.5M 802 2 76.2 6.3%
Brian Poole* 77.1 UFA $4.35M  483 2 61.6 6.4%
Xavier Rhodes 76.3 $6.5M 902 2 84.5 8.7%
Troy Hill 74.2 $4.5M 972 3 89.8 10.5%
Malcom Butler 71.6 $6.0M 1085 4 83.2 9.1%
Mike Hilton 68.9 $6M 463 3 60.2 17.7%
Cam Sutton 68.6 $4.5M 548 1 79.8 14.3%
Sydney Jones 68.1 $1.75M 302 2 103.2 10.3
T. Mitchell 67.7 $3.25M 1071 0 105.8 7.1%
Dontae Johnson 67.7 $1.075M 273 0 100.3 17.9%
Steven Nelson* 67.1 Unknown 907 2 97 7.7%
Desmond King 65.5 $3.0M 708 0 74.9 11.1%
             
Chidobe Awuzie* 51.9 $7.25M 452 1 103.5 5.0%
             
Kevin King 55.7 $5M/$3.75M 664 0 96.2 17.4%

*Awuzie was on IR from week 3 through week 9 and missed week 14 with Covid.  He had PFF grades of 72.2, 64.8 and 78.4 in his three prior seasons.  His previous history is why he got paid.  Steven Nelson was just released by Pittsburgh.  He was due to earn $8.25M in 2021 from the cap-strapped Steelers.  2020 was Nelson's worst year in the NFL.   Brian Poole signed a one year, $5M contract with the Jets for 2020.  He went on IR in November and is a free agent.  Poole played in 9 games.

Some of these players might have issues with scheme fit, off the field problems, injury histories, or locker room issues.  Also, it seemed likely that the Packers wanted someone who could be the full-time starter, though King himself has an extensive injury problem.  It was not clear to me if the Packers' plan was to draft their starter and have a veteran who can play as insurance, or if they wanted to take a developmental cornerback prospect who could be eased into the lineup.

I will report the details of Marcedes Lewis' contract when they become known.  Since that is a two-year deal, it would not surprise me if it had three void years so that the bulk of the dead money falls in 2023, when the cap limit might be $250 million.  Or not.  After all, it's just a jump to the left, and a step to the right.

 

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Comments (60)

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 06:58 am

Go ahead, LH. Blast away.

Yeah, I have no idea what the hell Gutekunst is doing, thinking, planning. I have no idea what the present is or the future, or their respective time frames.

Just to be clear, for those fans who want to win in 2022, it makes no difference whether King's deal has void years or it doesn't. For purposes of putting together and paying for a team in 2022, the Packers will have $5M less to spend than would have without signing King.

Now, King's cap hit about $2M for 2021, so the Packers don't have to spend the other $3M if they don't want to. They can just not spend it and instead roll it over into 2022. That still means King's cost was $5M for 2021. However, GB can also see that $3M in loose change laying around and decide to spend it if they see the right opportunity, the right player.

The 2020 team was good. Probably good enough to win it all, and might have had Bakh been playing. GB mIght have just outscored TB. Keeping the gang together is a good enough idea, but so is adding something and/or addition by subtraction, or just trying one not great CB in place of another not great CB.

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PackerAaron's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:03 am

" just trying one not great CB in place of another not great CB." is just trying it to try it though. In an unprecedented situation (cap going down because of a pandemic) they brought back a known quantity. I'm not a fan of the move, but I get it.

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PF4L's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:15 am

He's an insurance policy. In case they draft another Josh Jackson, or Kevin King.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:39 am

Yes, fair enough. I always realized that King returning to GB was a possibility, but not at that price. I put in the OTC article because it looks to me like the Packers' cap situation won't ease up until 2023.

What I don't get is the use of void years. I suppose they could extend King and keep the prorations in place to stretch this thing out.

My phrasing is inelegant when I wrote the Packers might as well substitute one iffy CB with another iffy CB (and draft one as well, probably high depending on how the draft goes). I watched Andy Herman's youtube (link below) and tended to agree: whatever else we know about King, the notion that King is not the answer, even that GB can't win playoff games with him, is a reasonable conclusion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cDJkw9_O09U&t=6s

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Guam's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:37 am

The only rationale I can figure for King's price is that other free agent CBs were flying off the market at substantial price tags and the Packers knew they needed one veteran CB from the free agent pool. The Packers have a history of keeping their own so I wasn't surprised they selected King, but figuring out the price tag is baffling.

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PF4L's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:14 am

Nice work putting that article together reynoldo

I may be wrong but.....
When you say the Packers 2022 cap liability is currently at 205.7 million, that is true, but i believe that only accounts for 30 players under contract next season, correct?
So you can imagine where that is going to end up.
As you said, that is without Lewis, Adams, Alexander.
But i also see 22 million in cap savings when they deal Rodgers.

All the restructuring that has been done has cap implications in the future.
It's the Dallas Cowboy way of saying.....i'll deal with it tomorrow.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:33 am

Oh, you're so right. I did not have time to update the Packer Tracker (which I add as a link to most articles). There, I add in roughly $15M+ for the 21 additional players who will most assuredly be on the roster and count under the Rule of 51. So adjusted cap liabilities for 2022 with 51 players is probably around $221M, plus $13.3M for Jaire's fifth year option, and more for Davante's extension, when it comes, and they may want to keep MVS and/or Lucas Patrick unless they find some internal replacements or draft them this year. Still easy to see $240M to $250M in liabilities.

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Minniman's picture

March 26, 2021 at 12:33 pm

From both of your comments and analysis it seems that the Packers are placing a LOT of eggs in the Jordan Love panning out - and trading Rodgers for that slew of r1 draft picks - basket....... or something else is afoot......but at this stage, the numbers legitimately don’t add up!

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Leatherhead's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:28 am

Nothing to blast away at. It’s very apparent that the Packers are going to make one more run with the group that’s been to the Championship game two years in a row.

It is equally apparent that some of our high dollar guys won’t be around in 2022. You know who I’m talking about. We didn’t trade up for Love so that we could not play him.

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Guam's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:45 am

While I agree with your first paragraph LH, I don't see the second barring a catastrophic fall off in play by Rodgers next year. Yes, the Packers drafted Love and obviously like him, but they really can't know what the have in him yet. He has yet to play a single down in an NFL preseason or regular season game. It would be a bold GM that is planning to discard an MVP and HOF QB for an untried draft choice.

If Rodgers continues to play well, they can always trade Love for a draft choice before his rookie contract is up. If Rodgers falls off, then try Love if he develops appropriately over the next 1-2 years. But the FO hasn't made that decision yet.

I strongly suspect 2022 cap relief is more likely going to come from releasing P.Smith, Lowery and Turner than it will come from releasing/trading Rodgers.

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Leatherhead's picture

March 26, 2021 at 09:09 am

Guam, cutting those three starters gives us roughly $20 million.

Trading Rodgers, and not resigning Adams, gives us roughly $35 million.

The Packers personnel people have watched every single snap Love took in college. They have film of him in one of the 100+ practices. They know how he’s doing in the weight room. They know how he fits in the locker room, and the quarterback room.

They didn’t draft Love to not play him. This isn’t about Rodgers. It’s about a plan to enjoy the competitive advantage of a QB on a rookie contract. And Rodgers isn’t going to be discarded....he’s going to be traded, and what we get in return will strengthen the team in other areas.

This is not about Rodgers. This is not about Rodgers.

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Coldworld's picture

March 26, 2021 at 09:23 am

I’m just wondering if this is why Rodgers contract reworking is protracted. There are all sorts of things Rodgers could agree to that would alleviate the 2022 bite, but do he or the team want to?

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Guam's picture

March 26, 2021 at 04:27 pm

I don't question that the Packers FO did their homework on Love, but that is true of every front office that has drafted a QB since the turn of the century (and probably well before that). And yet less than 50% of those QBs never get to a second contract with the team that drafted them. FO's are fallible, just like every human enterprise.

You don't trade a HOF QB until you know about his replacement and the Packers still do not know about Love yet and won't until they see him in some NFL games. The decision to move on from Rodgers won't happen until they know enough about Love to be really confident.

You are right in that it is not so much about Rodgers, but it is about Love and it is too early to tell yet about him.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:56 am

Oh, you still don't want to butt heads! No fun or just far too mature even with permission.

The void years look like the present is the um, er, the present year and only the present year. I've been thinking the present is at least two more years. They then could play Love in 2023 and see what they've got. But sometimes it seems like Gute is trying to make the last years of the Turner/Smith/Amos/Smith? contracts matter.

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Leatherhead's picture

March 26, 2021 at 09:17 am

You could butt heads with smarter people than me, like the self-proclaimed genius.

As an intellectual exercise, imagine 2022 without Rodgers, Adams, the Smiths. What does our cap look like then? What might we get in trade? What would the team look like? Dillon and Jones? A good line? A stronger defense? A superduper rookie WR?

People predicted the Apocalypse if we moved on from Favre. How did that work out?

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Coldworld's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:05 am

At some point that dystopia will come. It is plausible that many are reading the tea leaves perceptively, but that’s the thing, divination is notoriously rich in speculatory conclusions. I tend to side with those who do not see this as rendering Rogers release likely, but rather as not foreclosing the option. Probably a wise approach for people running a franchise. Injury or decline could set in fast.

To those who cite Brady, I say that people are different physically and that Brady, while he remains tactically acute, isn’t very good as a QB anymore. His D was and his surrounding cast, but most of all, Tampa out coached their way to the crown. Brady didn’t lose it with his play and his savvy certainly helped outthink a few teams. One was us, but the real opportunity came from our coaching failings.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:39 am

I was figuring that the dystopia would not ensue until 2023, and even then it depends on how he is playing. CW is correct that it is probably coming. 2023 gives Love a year to start and be evaluated. AR is still under contract so GB can trade him and his cost to the acquiring team is $25M plus picks and however AR and acquiring team structure his probable extension. True, GB won't get as many picks as they probably would if traded after 2022.

Well, the Lewis deal might tell us more. Can't believe $8M is a number anywhere in the actual description of his contract. Sooner or later, either by action or inaction on the AR deal, fans will learn more about what GB is thinking.

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Swisch's picture

March 26, 2021 at 11:23 am

It's wouldn't necessarily be a slam against Rodgers to say that we're going with him for one more season in a final push to the Super Bowl. Our hall-of-fame QB could be celebrated even as we prepare to move on.
Rodgers will have to leave us at some point. After this season, he could still have great value in a trade, and his replacement could be ready to go.
The timing is hard for predicting when Rodger will significantly decline, and when Love will be prime for succession -- but moving on after this season seems a good way to split the difference.
It's scary to think what will happen to the Packers after the days of Rodgers, but it is quite possible that we will still have a very good team.
It would be nice if Love had Adams to throw to for a couple of seasons for big catches, even if he doesn't focus on him as much as does Rodgers.
Other than that, Leatherhead's intellectual exercise seems a really good one.
P.S. If Love is considered a disappointment by our front office, in this upcoming draft we do have the volume of picks to trade up for one of the best quarterbacks available. However, Love may be projected to progress along the lines of Josh Allen, which could be less than Rodgers but still good enough to get the Packers into contention for future Super Bowls.

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CoachDino's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:21 pm

Good stuff, I will make one bold prediction.....Love will be nowhere near as good as Rodgers. Then again I would of said the same thing about Rodgers replacing favre. I'm hoping Love can be a top 8 QB for 5-8 years for the Packers with a few years of top 15 before the ascension and after the decline 8-12 year starter.

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Leatherhead's picture

March 26, 2021 at 01:27 pm

Coldworld, TGR, and Swisch......it’s not about Rodgers. It’s not about how he’s playing, or whether there’s a drop off. It’s about the team we can put on the field without him.

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PF4L's picture

March 26, 2021 at 01:49 pm

"The Packers personnel people have watched every single snap Love took in college. They have film of him in one of the 100+ practices. They know how he’s doing in the weight room. They know how he fits in the locker room, and the quarterback room." - LH
******************

Is that a guarantee Love will be a good QB? Because the Packers did their homework?

Really?

Under that standard....it's amazing how many hundreds of 1st round picks didn't work out over the decades.

Those teams....must not have done their...homework.

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CoachDino's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:30 pm

True but...lol
Having him on your Roster for a year is a huge advantage to just college evaluation. huge - Running your scheme, under your coaching, following your personalized improvement plan, not being able to hide one's warts physically, mentally and character. No doubt your evaluation will benefit greatly from this information.

The other point is that of that is time. The ability to have the most information when determining the timing of moves. There's no guarantees, one can only try to make the best decision possible at the right time using the best processes available.

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Crankbait's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:00 am

This team still has no defense or special teams.
I will be rooting for them enthusiastically as always but without any Super Bowl expectations.

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Savage57's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:18 am

The most disappointing move for the Pack will make this offseason.

Plays soft, shoddy tackler, heavy feet, situationally unaware with horrid ball skills, all while being maddeningly inconsistent.

Reupping him reminds me of this old saw - "Let's do more of what's not working, but harder!"

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Crankbait's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:01 am

Green Bay management doesn't care they have Rogers and that's what brings in the big bucks.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 01:35 pm

That is the reason he will play here as long as he wants to. The CAP should move into the 200-205M range in 2022 and at least four "star" players will be moved if they have to cover Rodgers. He could be extended forward in another scenario. The time to deal a player or two is this off-season and during the draft. The King move just rewards mediocrity.

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murf7777's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:45 am

Might King’s below average play be contributed to his quad and Achilles injury in mid November. Either of those injuries are difficult to heal without stop playing for weeks, which he didn’t. That said he is a risk because he is injury prone. The one year where he was mostly injury free was 2019 and that year he was an above average CB, regardless of PFF grade IMO.

I would’ve preferred someone less injury prone and find it hard to understand the Packers thinking on this move. This is a SC cap move that allows more flexibility in 2020, somewhat “all in”. Not so fast, they will only be “all in” unless they extend Arod and bring in outside FA’s..

could the Packers be looking to trade to bolster the roster? I think so. Gutey is different from his predecessors and a trade before, during or after wouldn’t surprise me. This roster is far from set.

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Coldworld's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:09 am

I have to think King was significantly hindered. Let’s put it this way, he looked to be significantly slower than the prior year, lacked any burst and was devoid of short area quickness in the second half of last year particularly.

The only thing that made sense to me in resigning him is that the team knows what he played through. That is why I’m of the belief that we need to draft high and often. This CB room is a wasteland. Behind Alexander, you have two players (de facto starters) who had down years and then, seemingly no one who could be relied on even for partial relief of King.

That said, now I’ve seen the contract details, I don’t get it. If King was so impaired (in other words they think he’s better) then why a one year at this price? If you are going to defer cap, sign him for longer and give the team an out (rather than seemingly automatically dead money) to cut him. If he is due a rebound, that would keep the upside. If he is not thought capable of rebounding, then why retain at all?

If it’s just a move to backstop depth, this contract seems to prevent us cutting him without accelerating cap hit, which seems pretty much a cast iron no this year. If King is good enough to be on the field, or even 4th corner, why commit to 3 million without him in 2022?

I stand to be corrected, but this contract seems to belie the only rationales I saw for resigning him. Ball has me baffled with this one. The only thing I do see is desperation unless this is a device to buy time to renegotiate later with him under contract when we might have more cap room?

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:22 am

I didn't answer your question that you posed elsewhere. The article is supposed to answer them, but really there is no definitive answer, only clues.

What are the outstanding characteristics of the contract?

1. It is a 1-year deal. Perhaps King knows he was injured and wants a prove-it year, especially in a low-cap year. GB knows it as well, and for the same reason thinks he will be better (maybe a $10M value CB) and wants the value of his play in 2021. There are at least a couple of reasons why GB didn't want a second year but let me circle around back on that while just writing this here: King said no but GB thinks enough of him to be okay with that and/or wants their rookie CB to have a year with some insurance on the team; GB has plans in 2022 that do not include King and/or other high priced players.

2. It has $3.75M guaranteed, 75% of the total value. That's huge, though one-year deals sometimes have high guaranteed ratios. Still, it is high for a guy like King. Reasons: King can read and foresees GB taking CBs left and right in the draft, both early and late, (mid too?). Maybe two of them look great in TC? King wanted to be sure he'd be on the 2021 team so he'd earn a decent chunk of money and $3.75M assures him of that.

3. It has 4 void years. Why? What are the possible scenarios:

3i) King plays well and is due a nice payday. Doesn't look like GB will be able to afford him. So, GB gets the value of his play and he will count $5M. If GB gets to or wins a Super Bowl, it will be worth it. If not, GB lost its gamble. King plays elsewhere in the NFL.

3ii) King is bad or otherwise gets displaced by one or more rookie CBs. He effectively counts $5M against the 2021 cap. If he isn't terrible and only one CB moves in front of him on the depth chart, the Packers could extend him, thus making those prorations perform a function. Could be just for vet min. after all and he becomes depth. More likely, if he is bad or displaced, he is gone.

3iii) King is okay. Probably means he is out of GB. Journeyman starting CBs have been getting what, $6M to $8.5M, and that sounds like it is out of GB's league. If the rookie CB or all rookie CBs were both awful, well things get difficult.

3b). GB just wanted $3.1M more in cap space for the 2021 season. Why?
bi) In case the right cap casualty comes along later. That would be more of an all-in move on 2021 and worry about 2022 later thing though that seems to be belied by the past, like paying AR's roster bonus.
bii) It could mean that some or all of the negotiations with Davante, AR, and/or Z aren't going well. Davante wants Hopkins money? AR - host of things. Z wants a 4 year extension tacked on? $3.1M plus cutting Lowry post June, or auto conversion on AR, some other combo gives GB just enough without having to redo other contracts.
biii) LH is right and GB is moving on from AR and sooner than expected. Or at leasts wants to be able to if he declines in 2021.

4. $5M plus $1M in incentives. Seems like a lot.
4a) They might think KIng's play was due to injury as discussed above.
4b) Still seems like more than his Fair Market Value. Maybe I misjudged the market and GB paid FMV for King. Maybe GB got duped.
4c). Tells me that despite some comments, GB does not have faith in Jackson, Hollman or Ento being the answer. Jackson at least got the 5 games King missed for evaluation. I think Jackson flunked in terms of being thought of as starter material. Maybe spot duty or backup. Hollman and Ento might be too limited in experience to bet on to that degree.

5) What dobber wrote. GB will again pair up a free agency signing with a draft pick, but now they can let the draft come to them and take the CB in different rounds, though it still has to be fairly high even if this is a deep class. IDK, very possible. TT IIRC only moved up once in the first round (for CM3) but he traded up several times in the 2nd round and in other rounds. However, so far Gute doesn't seem to mind moving up, down, and sideways instead of letting the draft come to him.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 01:43 pm

In 2019, Tramon covered the slot and could assist him in coverage calls. The hot reads were not going toward Jaire, so the guy should have been all eyes with the probability the ball would be heading in his direction. In 2020, Jackson was a no-show bust and Sullivan could not figure out the slot. Arians and Tom Moore worked those two guys like yo-yos with Evans and Godwin.

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scullyitsme's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:38 am

Kings issue is constant injury. Lately he’s at least played through them( although not well). When healthy he’s an above average corner. Here’s hoping for health and a new scheme that will actually use his size and speed. He sucks ten yards off the ball and trying to move laterally with the exception of red zone/goal line. Like the linebackers went to pettine and had to tell him to let them play, Jarie and king should of done the same. I’m more and more convinced pettine warped these guys talent playing scared.

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Guam's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:30 am

One advantage with the Kevin King signing is that it frees up the Packers to draft the best player available at #1 rather than force a need pick which CB would have been without King. The Packers still have needs at CB, IDL and OT, but with the draft deep in CBs, they can take BPA at #1 and still get what they need if the #1 isn't a CB.

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dobber's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:49 am

Arguably, this is how the Packers approached free agency a year ago: signing to fill glaring needs at OT and ILB, and allowing themselves to take the board as it comes to them.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 01:48 pm

That may be true. Gutedkunst would have to move up in round one to bag one of the top talent CBs in April.
He may be playing the averages or he could still go all-in on a high value CB to run the nickel spot. OT is a big need.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:48 am

King has not been good whether injured or not. He's much slower than his timed combine speed. Remember that pick near the goal line where he was caught from behind? I think that was Chris Farley that caught him. And he has no, what do the draft gurus like to call it?... quick twitch. Quick or fast receivers easily turn him and put him on his back more often than a Kardashian.

The contract details don't matter, he shouldn't be starting if he was paying the Pack $5 million. You don't sign someone with his history and expect to play him in a championship game. It wasn't total insanity drafting him, just stupid, but it is insanity resigning him with his 4-year resume.

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Curt's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:02 am

Seems to me the brass decided King's knowledge of the system and measurables give him a higher upside and his potential for 2021 would be back in the steady improvement role instead of the injury assisted decline in 2020. Part of the thought process likely included remembering Micah Hyde and Casey Hayward whom both continued to grow after their rookie contracts. My guess is Gute will not draft CB early but instead with go with offensive and defensive lines first. If somebody else falls to them they will look to Veldeer and / or Snacks to add depth in those areas instead.

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Coldworld's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:12 am

Veldheer and Snacks are done. Snacks was bad in Seattle and in the few snaps he played here. Veldheer has been semi retired for two years. Let’s move on from those faux security blankets.

Hayward is a fair comparative. Hyde was just misused and recognized as such by another team. King is in a one year contract. Even if he is stellar, he is a short term patch. We are going to be paying Alexander enough that we will need a first contract CB opposite him almost certainly. We need to restock the pipeline now even in the circumstance that king proves nearly everybody wrong.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:58 am

This assumes (in part, anyway) that the system isn't going to change under Barry.

Hyde improved when he got to play safety. In 2016, Hyde's last year, HHCD played 16 games at FS and Morgan Burnett played 15 games at SS. Hyde played some SS in 2015 when Burnett played just 12 games.

Hayward I agree with more though he got to play boundary CB in GB some. No idea why GB didn't evaluate him. I was resigned to his departure until I saw the price tag: he got $5.1M AAV. For that, I thought we should keep him, and maybe they tried but Hayward may have thought new pastures would be better for him.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 01:53 pm

Barry will be bringing His System, so familiarity leaves way to Learning a new set of rules.

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Since'61's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:10 am

I'm more confused now than I was before I know King's contract numbers.

All I can say is that there must be a CB in the draft who can play better than King whether we take him with our first or second pick. He may start in week 1 but hopefully by mid-season he can be ready to play. The same is true for DL and WR. There must be a DL better than Lowry/Lancaster and a WR better than MVS/Lazard. if we use our first 3 picks on those priorities whether we trade up, down or sideways I can live with re-signing King (although I still think the contract is ridiculous) and retaining Lowry/Lancaster.

Again, I realize that none of them will likely start in Week 1 but if they are ready by the second half of the season, I'm good.

After the first 3-4 picks the rest are depth and hopes for a player who can evolve into a contributor. But since it looks pretty certain that we are not going to fill our 3 major needs via FA, Gute and the scouting department need to have a laser focus on CB, WR and DL with our early picks.

Not much left for now except to wait for the draft. Thanks, Since '61

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 11:06 am

As a note, Lancaster was not tendered by GB and is no longer on the team. He is a UFA. Just saw you refer to him a few times like he was still on the team. He might be brought back to GB at the minimum or a tad more. Not bad as just a run stuffer, #5 DL.

DL under contract: Clark, Keke, Lowry, Previllion, Rush, Scott. That's all. [Gary and Z can kick inside, but they haven't the size to be true 3-4 DL.]

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Since'61's picture

March 26, 2021 at 11:46 am

TGR thanks for the update. My bad, I thought that Lancaster had another season to go before becoming a UFA.

Let's hope that Gute does not bring him back ala King. Thanks, Since '61

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 12:52 pm

LOL. I think Lancaster probably belongs in the NFL, albeit deep on the depth chart. He was a restricted free agent, but the cheapest tender to retain his rights/really rt. of first refusal was $2.133M. Seems safe that Gute would only bring him back for less.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 02:12 pm

He is a good inside guy. He is not a five tech or true 3-4 DE.

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PeteK's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:12 am

At the least we have an affordable veteran CB to go along with the rookies that will be drafted. Butler would have been my choice as his numbers are better, but he is 31.There were no other viable choices because of our cap limitations. In my opinion, it will come down to how successful we are in drafting a CB. A good young CB will allow us to be in our true 3/4 defense more often, making it more difficult for offenses to run and block our 4 good front line players. Too often last season we were in a 3 man front .

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flackcatcher's picture

March 26, 2021 at 01:24 pm

The Packers were always going to draft for the secondary. The number of players injured and chew up by season's end leaves them no choice. That's what happens when your defensive scheme puts nickel and dime in the box at the get go. Playing King and Alexander off coverage was no doubt part of pass coverage, but it had the side effect of preserving their bodies throughout the season. And only at the end of the season were the Packers playing a 3 DL front. Most of the season the Packers were in a 2-4-5 with duo slots. Only after the second half did we see Gary play with Smiths, and the Packers rotated a DL or Slot depending on the defensive call. The roster never had enough bodies in the DL to play 3 DL game long. That was Gutekunst's decision in roster building.

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Bearmeat's picture

March 26, 2021 at 11:58 am

I didn't like the King pick when it happened. I didn't like his play during his rookie contract. I didn't like his constant injuries. And I HATE this contract. Garbage. Pure. Garbage.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

March 26, 2021 at 12:01 pm

Don’t know if it was possible but if restructuring Rodgers could have brought Fuller they should have done it. Solidifies the secondary as one of the best in football and keeps the best QB in football for an extra year or two. And makes him a happy kid. Love is still valuable if he turns out to be good as a cheap and valuable backup or a trade piece. Or you just resign him in five years.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 02:15 pm

Fuller was headed to Denver for Vic Fangio before the Bears even hinted of releasing him.

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CoachDino's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:41 pm

JL, my guy, did you see the best packer article of the entire offseason local or national? TGR details the mess 2022/23 are. Restructuring only pushes more money out into those years. Extension maybe but once again following the logic of this extremely informative and insightful piece it most likely isn't feasible at this point.

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Swisch's picture

March 26, 2021 at 12:50 pm

A questionable move, especially at the price, but perhaps a good one.
We really don't know how much a player is hindered by injuries at various points of his career -- although it's a big problem if he is significantly injured much of the time.
***
Then there's the matter of coaching.
The year before Lombardi took over, the Packers had only one win and one tie in a 12-game season. His first year they were 7-5; the second year they lost in the championship game. Then the Packers won two straight championships and five in seven years.
In, "That First Season," (the title of a book by John Eisenberg), it seems Paul Hornung was more of a failure than Kevin King; Ray Nitschke was a nut job; Bart Starr was all but invisible; and Jerry Kramer was a goof off. They are all in the Hall of Fame.
***
In any case, as in "American Idol," we'll see whether or not King can achieve a level or two of higher performance previously unattained. I'm rooting for him.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

March 26, 2021 at 02:37 pm

So you're saying "There's a chance" King will make the Hall of Fame. I feel better about the signing now.

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Swisch's picture

March 26, 2021 at 04:27 pm

C'mon Johnny, it's pretty easy to see that I didn't put King in the Hall of Fame, while allowing for the possibility that he could get significantly better.
Perhaps I'm a really bad writer that my comments tend to get such negative reactions. Or perhaps people here really don't like me. It's somewhat discouraging.
For example, recently I wrote that Aaron Rodgers better be great if we're paying him something like $37 million per season, which is almost one-fifth of the total salary cap.
I didn't say whether or not Rodgers was indeed great enough to justify that mega-salary, just that he'd better be great. I left it up to others to think about it for themselves, and perhaps give me some feedback.
Instead, I mostly was hammered for supposedly being unfair to Rodgers. Yikes!
I hope CHTV is a place where people can at least raise questions about Rodgers without getting shouted down. It's one thing to disagree, another to slam someone.
I try not to get too concerned about "up" and "down" votes, but it is nice to get some signs of camaraderie. I'll muddle through in any case, but I don't mind expressing some sadness.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

March 26, 2021 at 04:59 pm

Didn’t mean for you to take it literally Swisch. It was a joke taken from Dumb and Dumber. When he’s asks a girl if he has a chance with her she says one in a million. He happily says “So you’re saying there’s a chance”. I know you didn’t mean to imply King was going to the Hall. Keep’em coming.

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Swisch's picture

March 26, 2021 at 06:41 pm

Thanks, Johnny. I didn't get the joke, but do now, and actually think it's funny.
I guess I'm a little sensitive from what I perceive as recent negativity.
At age 58, I know pretty well that it's a rough-and-tumble world. I remember in my twenties volunteering at a soup kitchen in a bad part of Chicago offered by the nuns of Mother Teresa; but in my thirties I actually had to go to a soup kitchen in Santa Fe for eating because of poor health and serious poverty that had me living in subsidized housing.
Even with a realization that I may take things too hard at times in general, I also refuse to accept that things have to be so harsh in our society.
The years have made me more of a realist, but still I refuse to stop being an idealist.
P.S. As an example of idealism, I think it's cool that Johnny Logan decided to make his home in Milwaukee after his playing days with the Braves and Pirates.
I like to think that the players appreciate it when the fans treat them well. Even when we're tough on the players, at the end of the day we can still call them our own and try to lift them up. That's why I wrote above that I'm rooting for Kevin King.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:41 pm

Keep smiling, kid.

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flackcatcher's picture

March 26, 2021 at 12:58 pm

King's signing is not that hard to explain in the context of the roster. Best fit in a overpriced market. Packers paid the going rate for a veteran they know. What is hard to accept is we are right at the end of this groups run, and what it means for the future. It's clear Gute and his front office think that this core roster is good enough to win it all this upcoming season. I believe the contracts we have seen the Packers restructure, is to give them another year beyond this. Kind of like the Packers own option year, Cap be damn if it works out. That makes (as I said too many times already) 2023 or 2024 the year Cap Man wins. We know the Packers have to transition from this current roster. Father Time waits for no one, gifted or not. It is going to be painful to watch. BUT NOT THIS YEAR.

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CoachDino's picture

March 27, 2021 at 08:39 am

Good points. Do the Packers really know for sure what they are going to do? If so when, did the Packers Know?. Time of Love Pick? before that? Did they decide after AR MVP year, Before COVID, After COVID (stadium attendance and sales at 100%). How much has the plan altered if at all considering above and more. Has the opinion on Love changed with COVID causing the drastic cut in Love's development opportunities? I'd love to know all that. I'm sure there multiple plans that are looking out 1-3 & 5 years on a continual basis that have to be continually adjusted..

By not restructuring AR his cap hit is just 2M in 2023 if he departs - Thats a approx. 40M savings in Cap and Cash. 35Mil when including any replacement cost for a back-up for Love, could be less if just a rookie or vet min contract.

With 100% TV Money and 100% Attendance driving a big jump in cap Limit and 35 mil off the books it might be a huge swing in cap position. The rest of the roster is going to need to improve in an attempt to make up for losing AR but there's certainly a chance to be a strong team.

I still see a possible pathway to keeping AR past 2023.
1) If the Packers are able to show some fiscal restraint on backloading more cap debt
2) Arod Agrees to a 4 yr contract which allows them to part ways earlier with limited dead cap
3) AR Contract doesn't deter ability to have enough talent around him to compete for SB
4) AR doesn't let his ego make him emotional and not accept a Packer Offer made closer to 2024 than 2022. Its 2021, he has 3 years left on his contract and he's looking for security at 40 in the NFL. Don't blame him but it's not a slight.
5) He's healthy and still playing at a very high level.

Another variable? How much trade value does he have after each year? Did you see what SF just gave up? 3 firsts (1 was their own) and a 3rd? That's a lot considering these QBs have over a 50% rate of failure, in the League. Closer to 65% when including guys that worked out on a new team.

Fun to theorize - time will tell

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CoachDino's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:08 pm

TGR - you are officially my hero. There is so much great information there for us fans to digest and make up our own minds on how we view things but we can do so with the best information and scenario analysis available.

lombardi had a more generalized article on the cap and one of the points i came away with was no matter the increase in the cap limit it will not change a teams cap position when it comes to FA on a 1 to 1 ratio. The raise in limit will correlate directly to a raise in prices. So if you had the worst cap position going into the cap limit jump season, you will still have the worst cap position (ability to sign FA) after.

The packers saving grace would be the ability to keep more of what they have the higher the rise in cap limit (like you so very well illustrated). Which when you already have one of the best teams is a big deal. Sure I'd like to add FAs that improve my team but nothing is going to impact my team more than my ability to keep ARod and as many of our own studs as possible.

Another Great discussion board as well. Plus I was starting to think I was crying wolf with all my whining about the 2022/23 cap space and the impact it has in 2021 and looking decision impact in 2022/23.

The effort you put into these article is truly appreciated. Your competition is still doing the Cut, paste, repeat on best "Available" FA in 2021 for GB.

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badaxed's picture

April 11, 2021 at 03:42 pm

King has struggled mightily in zone coverage, ranking dead last in coverage grade since entering the league, and he’s been one of the worst tacklers in the league over the last two years.

You can put lipstick on this pig and he is still a pig!

What a horrible decision. Paying millions for this pig to prance around with pricey lipstick and get beat like a drum will not help this team.

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