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Cory's Corner: Looks like 2018 Is a Time to Save

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Cory's Corner: Looks like 2018 Is a Time to Save

Aside from Jimmy Graham and Muhammed Wilkerson, the Packers have been pretty quiet in free agency.

I expected general manager Brian Gutekunst to be more aggressive in free agency than Ted Thompson, but there is something else at stake here: Aaron Rodgers.

Gutekunst is likely thinking this is a time to save cap room with Rodgers’ deal likely coming in the next month. And with Rodgers expected to get around $30 million a year, the Packers would be wise to save than spend this year.

But as surprised as I am about Gutekunst’s approach, the Packers have at least been in the conversation with several players this year. I doubt we would’ve seen Thompson give Kyle Fuller an offer sheet or kick the tires on players like Tyrann Mathieu.

Make no mistake, Gutekunst has been bolder, it’s just not Tabasco flavored bold. It’s more like Lawry’s seasoned salt. The market for free agent corners has been ridiculous and the same can be said about receivers, judging by Donte Moncrief’s one-year, $9.6 million deal.

There’s a time to spend and a time to save. With Clay Matthews and Randall Cobb off the books in 2019, the Packers would have more money to spend on Khalil Mack. He would be a cornerstone defensive player that would give that side of the ball instant credibility. He would also make Nick Perry’s job a little easier. Or if the Vikings allow Stefon Diggs to get to free agency next year, he would be nice asset alongside Davante Adams.

The Packers didn’t break the bank with the Tramon Williams signing, and they will likely hedge their bets by re-signing Davon House. Those aren’t bad moves because the back end of the defense was lacking in veteran leadership. However, Williams is 35 and House turns 29 this summer. They are products of a cap-saving philosophy.

Of course with compensatory picks on the table to be drafted, the Packers have 12 picks to move up in the draft or package together to get another player. That includes nine picks from rounds four through seven.

It’s fair to assume that the Packers don’t want to overspend on a big-ticket free agent only to look through the couch cushions when it’s time to pay Rodgers. He deserves to be paid the highest paid player in the league and will likely get it.

So if you had hopes that the Packers were going to make a splash in free agency, you thought wrong. It just so happens that Gutekunst took over as general manager the same year that the best passer on the planet was going to negotiate his contract.

Granted, the Packers dipped their toe in the pool, but unless there is a draft day trade, wait until next year for that big splash. 

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Cory Jennerjohn is a graduate from UW-Oshkosh and has been in sports media for over 15 years. He was a co-host on "Clubhouse Live" and has also done various radio and TV work as well. He has written for newspapers, magazines and websites. He currently is a columnist for CHTV and also does various podcasts. He recently earned his Masters degree from the University of Iowa. He can be found on Twitter: @Coryjennerjohn

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (59) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

EddieLeeIvory's picture

Getting Muhammad Wilkerson & Jimmy Graham would be considered HUGE gets if it was Ted Thompson.
I give Guty credit here. He got these 2 for about the same price as Nelson was set to receive.

I love Jordy, & I personally would have tried to trade Cobb instead of releasing 87 (but don't know if anyone, or who, would have offered even close to fair value for Cobb). But it would have at least been "something", perhaps a CB with a too-high #, or a day 2 pick.

And Ty can do much of what Cobb does. Not all though. But ask Rodgers about replacing Nelson. They had that chemistry. Except at Seattle 2014 NFCCG.

4thand1's picture

"Except at Seattle 2014 NFCCG". I was screaming Sherman is hurt, throw to Jordy, he was covering him one on one. One stinking first down and the Packers go to the SB.

Savage57's picture

"We wanted to hit our targets."

Bearmeat's picture

ugh

packerbackerjim's picture

You weren’t the only one. Sherman was dragging his arm around with him and MM never went at him. Colossal blunder of epic proportions (redundant, I know. But still..)

Since '61's picture

Rodgers could have changed the play at the LOS but for some reason he didn't. They wanted to use up Seattle's timeouts, never expecting a shanked punt, a defensive suicide on the field, a botched fielding of an onside kick and the failure to knock down a lame duck 2 point conversion, not to mention CM3 deciding to be tired. Those 2+ minutes are a case study for throwing a game away, at least until the Falcons/Pats SB. Almost makes me believe the game was deliberately thrown. Thanks, Since '61

snowdog's picture

Playing possum

Nick Perry's picture

Personally I like what Gutekunst has done. He's inherited a roster with several holes and needs and doesn't have a ton of cap space to fix it. It took the Packers several years of bad drafts, poor choices in retaining their own players, and some very costly injuries to get this roster to where it is. It's NOT going to be "Fixed" in Gutekunst's first 90 days and will probably take a few drafts and more cap space for him to get it to where it needs to be.

Bert's picture

I agree Nick. I know folks are impatient, and with AR getting along in age I can't blame them. The future is NOW! But Gute just may not have the ammo to plug all the leaks in one off season.

Nick Perry's picture

I completely agree Bert, i'm actually a very impatient man. But perhaps with years does come at least some wisdom and it's awfully tough to fill those holes in one off-season, crush the first 4 or 5 rounds of the draft, AND get em all playing like a SB team by years end.

If the Packers can get a draft like the Saints had last year and get 4 starters who actually contribute then maybe...

Packer Fan's picture

The Pack has been more aggressive. And there is still time to do more. It is about acting when there is opportunity. TT never did that. BG could add another veteran CB, Safety and OL. When players get injured to find another veteran instead of player younger players that do badly. BG can pick up players when roster cuts occur. It is about improving the roster at any time they can.

stockholder's picture

Saving, Saving, Savings! Most felt Graham wasn't worth that much. The Quality of the players was in question, for the money thrown around. The demand was just to HIGH. I understand the costs. But we still have to sign certain players. Or should we? The swing to the Free agents was bigger than I ever expected. Gute could have traded more. Hopefully will see that in the draft. It's time to have a good draft class regardless of position. This team needs more than A-Rod.

Ryan Graham's picture

Side note has anyone heard anything on Jordan Matthews?

The jury is still out I think in free agency. If Matthews gets signed to a modest 2 year deal and then they go after Breeland....this would be easily disregarded. If they discontinue shopping then I would second your point to save and it's not the worst idea. Still have a hunch BG is gonna get real aggressive in the draft. I mean like an early 20th century detective looking for clues without the findings of DNA kind of hunch, but nonetheless...a hunch.