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Nick Perry’s Unsure of His Future With the Packers

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Nick Perry’s Unsure of His Future With the Packers

A source close to Nick Perry told ESPN’s Rob Demovsky, the outside linebacker wouldn’t be surprised if the team declined to pay his $4.8 million roster bonus due March 15th.

Perry is unsure if the Packers will cut ties with him altogether or aim to restructure his current deal. He currently has three years remaining on the five-year $60 million contract he signed in 2017 with a potential out after 2019. 

In addition, Demovsky reported there’s word spreading through the NFL Combine this week that Green Bay is getting ready to target pass rushers in free agency.

Perry will turn 29 in April and has been banged up with significant injuries landing him on injured reserve in each of the last two seasons. Green Bay might also be able to find a cheaper route through free agency than the $11 million Perry is due in 2019. 

This year’s free agency class includes outside linebackers Anthony Barr, Dante Fowler Jr, and Jadeveon Clowney who would all be younger options than Perry. They also do not have a nearly as extensive history of injuries. 

Perry has missed an eye-opening 31 games throughout his seven years in the NFL. As a former first-round pick, he really didn’t show that potential until year five when he recorded a team-leading 11 sacks in 14 games. His breakout season pressured the Packers into offering him his current deal or risk becoming very thin at outside linebacker.  

Now Green Bay has to weigh their options again with Perry and project not only what he will produce in the near future, but will he be able to remain healthy? They are set to lose Clay Matthews whose contract is expiring so parting ways with Perry would leave Kyler Fackrell and Reggie Gilbert as their only edge players with solid experience. 

While the Packers are expected to draft a pass rusher with one of their top picks, that in itself has uncertainty.  Ideally, they could restructure Perry, find an affordable outside linebacker in FA, and then draft someone with a high ceiling with one of their first three picks.

 

 

Brandon Carwile is a Packers writer who also enjoys watching and breaking down film. Follow him on Twitter @PackerScribe.

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Fan friendly comments only: on Comments (65) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Dash Riprock's picture

I say roll the dice with Perry. He's due for an injury free season. I really believe this is the year Perry puts it all together. I think Green Bay keeps him this season. Just my Prof. opinion.

Dash

TheBigCheeze's picture

sorry Dash......but regarding injuries and performance....Perry is about as welcome here as a bad case of Herpes.......away with him !!!!!!!

The TKstinator's picture

Thompson Twins?

Bure9620's picture

Perry looked bad even when somewhat healthy early this last year. He was always solid against the run in his career but now he can't even set the Edge OR get off blocks. Perry was one of my lowest graded defensive players last year.

Dash Riprock's picture

Please TK. I love Ted Thompson and he's a borderline future hall of famer but please don't insult us. Thompson does not trump Trump. They have already started plans on carving Trump into Mt. Rushmore from what I just read. Ted Thompson for as great a job he did for the Packers is not in Trump's territory. Now please stick to football TK. Nobody here wants to talk politics. Thank you.

Dash

Dawg0808's picture

Don't talk politics and you back the idiot!

fastmoving's picture

Why you make fun of the bum all the time......thats not the place to bash the helpless.
And I bet he would give anything to be even 1% TT is (is!!). But I guess thats what you try to say.......

The TKstinator's picture

You misunderstand.
There used to be a guy on here by that TT name who used to state things “in his professional opinion”...wondering if you remenber him.

Dash Riprock's picture

Do you mean Thompson Twins? Nope, don't remember him sorry.

Dash

The TKstinator's picture

Or maybe...

Nick Perry's picture

It's him TK...Thompson Twins, Trumps, and a few others. I asked him several time when he first surfaced again and would never answer but it's clearly him.

Same type of answers, (cough-cough) humor, love of Trump and Thompson...It's HIM....

The TKstinator's picture

Yeah, I thought so too.

stockholder's picture

I'm with you on this Dash. Roll the Dice. Live up to the Contract. I feel the good in You.

Dash Riprock's picture

To me it's just common sense. Both Perry and Wilkerson are guys if you had to gamble on would be the types to do so. Both are immensely talented who had injuries last year. I look for pride, ego, legacy and of course money as motivators. I think both these guys don't want to end their careers with people looking at them in a negative light. They both have all those reasons above to play for. If you can get both for another year on a fair deal that doesn't break the bank it's worth the roll of the dice to me to do so.

Dash

jannes bjornson's picture

Restructure his deal or move on.

dblbogey's picture

Dash has that spark of divinity within him.

Old School's picture

Before people go and say a lot of stuff, I'd suggest they do a little research. He's available about 2/3 of the time and he's good for 0.44 sacks/game when he's on the field.

Compare that with some better known names like Clowny or Lawrence. He's not quite as good as them, but he's not hot garbage, either. We'll never get a better player than him for the $3 million we'd save by releasing him.

Why are people so obsessed with creating holes in the lineup just so they can fill them with draft picks? What is the point of saving money by replacing expensive players with guys who aren't as good?

Truthfully, I'd be reluctant to do business with people who routinely try to get out of the deals they signed of their own free will. Doesn't impress me as a good way to run a railroad.

Tingham's picture

But the problem is Nick Perry is a hole in the lineup. NOTHING suggests he is all of a sudden stay healthy AND play well. He did it once in 7 years. Hard pass.

Dash Riprock's picture

There's certain "professionals" here that have certain "skills". Las Vegas Tom would be the person IMPO to deal with this since this is about numbers and odds. I say the odds finally turn in favor of the Packer this season with Nick Perry and he has his greatest season. I say we're due for the jackpot hit. Others say the same old injury and no production. This is a job for Las Vegas Tom. LVT, what are your odds that we finally hit on Perry this season? Remember, we also have a new strength and conditioning guru in Chris Gizzi, who might radically change things and do the direct opposite of everything they've done before. Your thoughts LVT?

Dash

Old School's picture

He's available 2/3 of the time.....that's better than Aaron Jones. Let's get rid of him, too.

He's been one of the more productive edge rushers in the league over the last 7 years. Hardly a hole in the lineup.

HankScorpio's picture

"He's been one of the more productive edge rushers in the league over the last 7 years. Hardly a hole in the lineup."

The games that have been broadcast on my TV during the last 7 years have not given much support to that point of view. Perry's lack of production is why everyone has been screaming for more outside pass rush for at least 3 years now. Paying him a 8 digit salary is pure insanity.

Old School's picture

Ah.....a combination broadside of "My eyes are infallibile" and the "Everybody Bandwagon" rhetorical device. "Everybody agrees". That's what people say when they don't want to have to actually defend their position.

Seven years. 72% availability. 32 sacks in 81 games...0.44 sacks/game. Both of them far above average.

There are 32 teams. Each team has 4 OLBs active on gameday. That's 128 OLBs. I'm not arguing that Perry is one of the Top Ten, or even Top 20. But he's damn sure in the top half.

You don't like the contract. I agree that paying him 8 figures to play is too much, but paying him 8 figures NOT to play is just freakin' nuts.

If we cut him, we save $3 million dollars. So it costs $3 million for us to have him play for us this year. If you think you can get a better player at that position for less money, I'd like to know who.

If you want to add a better player than Perry to the team, fine, we'll put him in a three man OLB rotation with Fackrell and Perry. As I said, Perry's making $3 million, Fackrell is on the last year of his rookie deal, and Gilbert is a good value at the vet minimum. We can afford to ADD an edge rusher.....we don't have to subtract one.

This stuff about the pass rush is nonsense, quite frankly. I don't care if it's coming from inside, outside, or out of the stands....as long as it's getting the QB on the ground, it's a successful pass rush.

2018.....8th in sacks. 5 of the top 8 teams did not make the playoffs.
2017....19th
2016....7th.
2015...7th....

So over the last 4 years, there is ONE year we weren't in the Top 10. Yeah, that's a horrible pass rush. I can see why you'd want to spend $15 million and/or a high draft choice to replace a guy who's been part of that in order to save $3 million.

Dash Riprock's picture

"We'll never get a better player than him for the $3 million we'd save by releasing him."'

This was absolute gold Old School, gold!! This is what the Packers will be looking at in the end I am guessing.

Dash

Qoojo's picture

So the past three years, since becoming a starter, he has played in 14, 12, and 9 games, and started 12, 11, and 9, of those games. I think it's reasonable to project 12-14 games out of him, given his full games played history for the past 6 years (11, 15, 14, 14, 12, and 9 games).

The real question is what sort of condition will he be in if they make the playoffs? 65%? 75%?

I am not sure that they will find a better bargain if he can stay somewhat healthy.

Lare's picture

Perry has averaged 31 total tackles and 4 sacks the last two years. For $14 million in cap hit this season I think the Packers can get someone with way more production than that for the $3 million or so in dead money difference.

Heck, Reggie Gilbert had 39 total tackles and 3.5 sacks last season for around half a million in salary.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I guess I am not fully understanding the "honor the contract" concept. The contract allows teams to cut players and spells out what happens to the player and to the team in the event the team cuts them or the player holds out, retires, or gets injured.

A couple of months ago a bank sent an advertisement to me: we'll pay you $500 if you open a savings (and deposit a substantial amount) and checking account and keep it open for 90 days. So I did, but now I've gotten the $500 and have closed the account. I am sure the bank hoped I wouldn't cut them (probably should have gotten a clue when I didn't want an ATM card or to set up online banking). I ended up getting a little over a 3% return on cash I always keep around. Now I will go back to getting a tenth of 1% from my long-time but convenient bank until another bank makes a similar offer. I've done this multiple times over the last few years. I am running out of banks though.

It is implicit in the contracts that players sign that teams might cut them if they don't perform. Everybody understands this concept, except for quasi-monopolistic entities like my internet provider.

Old School's picture

Here's my concept of what it means.

You signed a guy to a contract that says "I'm going to pay you X over this period of time."

In return, you tell the guy what is expected. In fact, it's spelled out in the contract. Failure to deliver guaranteed goods or service is a breach.

But that's not exactly the issue with Perry, because he got hurt on the job. He's still under contract for one more year.

Now, we can just pay out what we've promised and say "We release you from this contract". This is acknowledging that you made a mistake when you offered him the contract. Fine. But it's been an expensive mistake, because now you're paying him but he's not working for you anymore.

What does it cost to have Perry play for us this year versus what does it cost for him to NOT play for us this year?

I'm not saying we should never end a contract early, but I am saying that I don't think it's good business to just routinely end contracts prematurely. Why do you keep signing contracts that you want to get out of?

In the SPECIFIC case of Perry, counting the pro-rated signing bonus, roster bonus, workout bonus, etc., my understanding is that if he plays for us this year it's 14.4 million against the cap, and if he doesn't play it's $11 million in dead money.

So.....we've already paid him the $11 million, and I'd rather pay him another 3.4 million to PLAY than not have him. JMO.

Old School's picture

Dash, you have fallen for the Fake News that Nick Perry is always hurt. He is not. Over his career, he has 72% availability and that is actually pretty good for that position over the last 7 years. 81 games out of a possible 112. The probability is that we'll get 10-12 games out of him this year.

IMO, it's more important to ADD to the position than it is to subtract from it. Right now, Fackrell and Perry are the starters. No backups. We like to activate 4 and have 5 on the 53 man roster.

I remember when we had salary cap problems and had to let good players go purely for financial reasons and I thank Thompson for fixing that situation and hope it stays fixed.

My understanding is that the overall difference between cutting Perry and playing Perry is about $3 million dollars. IMO, it makes more sense to pay him $3 million to play than to pay him $10 million not to.

If we added a good OLB to Perry and Fackrell we'd have a pretty good three man rotation. Perry will almost certainly be gone after this year, and we'll have to decide whether or not to keep Fackrell. But adding a good rookie this year gives us a piece for the next four years.

That doesn't mean I'm endorsing drafting an OLB at #12, because I'm not, but I think there are some guys available on the second day that would be worth considering.

PeteK's picture

Can't wait to get rid of this poor signing. 31 games missed plus 10 more with one hand injured which made him ineffective.

Wilment's picture

I agree with Dash on this one...restructure Perrys deal and keep him around a bit, especially if they are going to part company with CM. Lets face it, KF and RG don't strike fear into the hearts of anyone...they are thin at OLB, and I think keeping either Perry or Mathews around at least short term is a must.

jannes bjornson's picture

They would keep Matthews over Perry.

Bert's picture

Let's face it, NP doesn't strike fear into the hearts of anyone.....either.

Dash Riprock's picture

Yes, he does strike fear when he's healthy and HE'S HEALTHY!! and ready to roll this season. it's Matthews that doesn't strike fear in anyone. Well, maybe a barber who charges the same amount for a haircut regardless of how much hair a person has.

Dash

White _tornado's picture

Call Perry into the office, tell him he either plays this year for league minimum or he's cut. No more freeloaders!

Guam's picture

I think we might already have an answer to the Perry question. If the Packers have not already started the negotiation to restructure his contract, it isn't going to happen in the next 14 days. Those kinds of discussions take weeks and should have been started long ago if the Packers wanted to restructure. Perry is either going to get paid in full or cut. My guess is cut.

Dawg0808's picture

I agree Perry has burned out his welcome, no matter what Dash thinks!

Guam's picture

I think it is possible that the Packers could cut Perry and then attempt to re-sign him at a much more reasonable rate. The risk is some other team signing him. I will be interesting to see how this plays out.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

IDK, Guam. I don't think it necessarily takes long to finalize a contract or a restructure. Seems like players sometimes are signing contracts pretty quickly, other times not. If the Packers want to see what can be done at the OLB position during legal tampering and concurrently negotiate with Perry in case they can't reach a deal with a FA OLB, yes, it seems to me that you might be right since that seems like a tight timeframe. It might be doable. GB might want to see what CM3's market is as well.

I thought the Packers might wait until after the combine to get serious about Perry. First, the main FO and Coaches are busy at the combine except for Ball. The other thing is the team might want an up-close look at the OLB draft prospects just to be sure that there are some that meet the physical requirements, pass through the medical stuff, and then talk to the prospects to see if there are multiple guys they like who might be available at #12 or #30, or somewhere in between for that matter if Gute gets to dealing.

Interesting times.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

Dump Him

dobber's picture

Free agency opens March 13.

Perry's bonus vests on March 15.

I wouldn't be surprised if the Packers push this decision to the last possible minute.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Agreed. GB should have a better notion of what they can land in FA when the legal tampering period starts March 11. If the market goes crazy, everyone gets tagged or re-signed, they can always just pay Nick Perry.

I don't think it would take too long to reach a deal on restructuring, either, if that the direction the team wants to go, and depending on whether Perry is willing and how accommodating he is. IDK exactly how long that generally takes or if they could reach a handshake deal with his agent based on the agreed principal terms.

MarkinMadison's picture

Makes sense Dobber. You know they are all feeling each other out in Indy. Legal tampering starts on the 11th. The Packers will know by the 14th if they are going to hit their target in FA, or not, if they are really gunning for a top-tier EDGE.

Larry Monaghan's picture

All let's be honest with each other, Nick Perry should have never been drafted by the Packers. The Patriots and many other teams would have cut him long long before now. One decent season in how many? It's not like he had a bad run of injuries the past two years and was stellar before that.

"I firmly believe that any man’s finest hour, the greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle – victorious."
-- Vince Lombardi

Does this sound like Nick Perry that Vince Lombardi is referring to???? Hell no. Cut him and lets get on with fielding players who want to play and are capable of playing football at a high level who perform. Nick Perry has milked this for all that it is worth.

Old School's picture

Let's be honest....Perry has been one of the more successful edge rushers over the last seven years.

Lare's picture

I imagine that the Bears, Lions & Vikings organizations and their fans are all hoping that the Packers keep Nick Perry on their roster.

White _tornado's picture

Succssful at what? Keeping doctors gainfully employed? Testing out new designs of trainers tables? Single handedly making a bandage company a fortune 500 company?

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I agree with Old School. Perry has averaged 4.6 sacks per year while setting a pretty good edge for most of those years. His per snaps stats are very good to excellent. Had he been a 5th rounder and received a modest contract after 4 seasons, no one would be complaining about him.

The complaints aren't about his ability. They are about his draft position and now his contract. At least that's what I've been complaining about.

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

Yes, if he was Reggie Gilbert his numbers would be great and everyone would be satisfied. But he was a first round pick and he's between the 5th and the 8th highest paid linebacker depending on what you go by. I don't see how people defend his play. He easily has one of the top 5 worst contacts in the NFL. And for everyone who says we cant take the cap hit, it's going to cost 7.5 million to dump his ass after next season. So 11 million something this year or 7.5 next year.
People have also said that we can't replace him for what we save in cutting him. I completely disagree. Hes on the hook for 29 million in 2020 and 2021. If you take the 3.75 million from this year saved by cutting him, thats roughly 32 million dollars. I promise he can be replaced by someone for 3 years /32 million dollars

HoLeCrap's picture

He went to USC and played along side some very good people who made him look better than he was. Analyst had him a late two or three round, but Ted sitting at the near end of one swung for the fences and missed on this one.

White _tornado's picture

Doesnt sound like Kevin king either Larry.

Dash Riprock's picture

I hate to change the subject but is it just me or every time I see that photo of Nick Perry I can't help but think of the old famous Bob Gimlin video of Bigfoot. If you put a Bigfoot costume on Nick Perry in that exact same pose he would be a perfect fit. Anybody else see it? Just for the record I am an amateur Bigfoot hunter in WI. Never saw one but I am always on the lookout whenever I go in the woods. Would love to capture one on video.

Dash

White _tornado's picture

I dont see the resemblance Dash. Bigfoot wasnt on crutches or have a club on his hand.

I think in order to see bigfoot, you first need to move a trailer park in Iowa. SMH.

CAG123's picture

I always say being a GM is damned if you do damned if you don't. If they had let him walk and he went on to put up 12 sacks elsewhere you would all be complaining but since it didn't work out its just another bad TT signing. Lets face it Perry should have never been drafted by the Packers I even remember him saying he preferred a team that ran a 4-3. Perry being a 4-3 DE instead of a 3-4 OLB is the exact reason they let Aaron Kampman walk. So if anything TT made a terrible choice and drafted a guy out of position. (again Datone Jones, Randall)

Tundraboy's picture

Don't think Nick should stop by and visit this site anytime soon.

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

Yeah, he might break his hand logging on.

Mags's picture

Kick his ass to the curb!

OnWisconsinGoPack's picture

If they are going all in on pass rushers during FA, they'll need Perry's cap $....I'd rather trade a late round pick for Justin Houston and take his cap hit then keep Perry right now. Perry is the perfect example of drafting someone out of need at a position he didn't play and then has one good year out of 5 and you throw the bank at him out of need again. F'ing bears should have taken Perry instead of Shea because that's who we needed, but at least they were smart enough to let him walk when he didn't work out.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Yeah, some pretty smart people are making a much better case than I initially thought possible for trading for Houston. I initially recoiled from the $15M and $17.5M cap hits, but he would come with no dead money, reducing risk. Houston could provide a steady veteran while the rookie OLB gets his feet wet. Or OLBs. It allows GB to part ways from Perry and/or CM3 if they are too pricey or won't renegotiate. Houston just turned 30. We're assuming the draft pick would be a 5th/6th.

IDK. Smith/Barr/Barrett might solve one OLB position for multiple years for less money and no draft pick (modest though it might be), but Houston is a proven guy whereas most of the other solutions are not proven, or are one-year wonders like Dee Ford. We already signed a one year wonder to a big contract. That didn't work out all that well, but maybe Ford would.

GLM's picture

That still counts as a wasted Bears pick...

Personally, I think Perry and the Packers need to move on...maybe Clay, too, if he can get top dollar somewhere else. That would require the team to find a leader in free agency, and a top prospect in the dtaft.

Packer1gc's picture

Perry, Cobb, go. Clay moves inside for less $. If not he joins Perry Cobb. Wilkerson stays. Go Pack Go
AND NOW I'M GONE, GOODNIGHT

AgrippaLII's picture

Cut Perry and try to resign Matthews to a reasonable contract...he may not be a "sack" machine but he can still play linebacker.

Coach JV's picture

Perry has never been a LB anyway... he's been played out of position his entire career in GB.
Perry is a 4-3 end.

Cut this guy and lets spend some money in FA and a high draft pick to reload this position.

Packer Fan's picture

I say release Perry. He never had a full season. He can't play hurt. How many times has he played with a club hand, reducing his effectiveness. And next year's cap number gets worse. Use the extra $5 mil to keep Matthews.

HoLeCrap's picture

Perry is a bum imho. He should have never been a one pick, takes plays off, goes missing in games, misses games for minor injuries and plays for da money. Best year contract year tells you he is loyal to his wallet.
Hopefully they dump him. Another season on the bench does not help this team.

albert999's picture

Replace him now with someone who can give us years he doesn’t have left

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