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Packers Bye Week Self-Scout: Potential Roster Moves

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Packers Bye Week Self-Scout: Potential Roster Moves

The bye week seems like a good time to take stock of the Packers’ roster.  Teams can acquire players via trade or trade players to other teams depending on whether the General Manager thinks their team has a chance that year.  This year Green Bay’s front office has had six games to evaluate the team, which has 3-2-1 record.  The trading deadline is October 30th, two days after the Rams game. 

Opinions vary wildly as to the viability of Green Bay’s playoff chances and ability to advance deep into the playoffs.  So, let’s look at the possibilities.  General Managers need to keep in mind their team’s chances, how long players are under contract, and how they evaluate their own players during the next offseason.  An unknown is how much trading for a player might cost in terms of draft picks and cap hits, and whether the player one hopes to acquire will want or need a contract extension.  Trading for someone who is going to hold out is not a positive.  

 

Acquiring Players:

Below is a spreadsheet with players and their cap situations.  It has the player’s name, position, age, team, current cap number, dead money to the team Green Bay gets the player from, Green Bay’s actual cap hit should it trade for the player, and what cap hits Green Bay would have if no contract extensions or restructures were done, and the roughest of guesses as to what draft picks the Packers might have to send.

 

 

The list is not exhaustive.  One could arguably look at any player on Oakland, Arizona, New York Giants, and possibly Denver, Atlanta, or Buffalo.  I have not included LeVeon Bell, Kelvin Benjamin, Emmanuel Sanders, DeVante Parker, Deonne Buchanan, LeSean McCoy, and others who I’ve seen mentioned, mostly because I think those targets are too unlikely, and because I grew tired of doing math.  

The NFLPA shows Green Bay with $6.8M in available cap space, and Overthecap is similar. Sportrac shows $3.67M (pending the decision on Bennett’s signing bonus).  What is interesting is that at least in a technical sense Green Bay has enough or almost enough salary cap space in 2018 to accommodate trading for Chandler Jones, Patrick Peterson, or Olivier Vernon.  

True, the Packers might have to scramble to generate cap space later this season.  If the solution is converting base salary to a signing bonus, significant cap space could only be generated by re-structuring the contracts of Daniels or Bulaga (which has its own set of consequences), or I suppose Crosby if not much space is needed.  Otherwise, the Packers would have to extend or otherwise rid itself of the cap hits associated with Matthews, Cobb, or Clinton-Dix.

I included some cornerbacks and a nose tackle despite both positions being areas of relative strength.  I suppose acquiring Peterson might make the Packers more willing to trade King or one of the rookie cornerbacks away.  For me, dealing King or Jackson would have to be part of a truly blockbuster trade for a really elite player who is under contract for a number of years.  I would never say never, but I cannot readily imagine any likely scenario under which I would part with Alexander.

Guessing what trading for a player might cost is very difficult.  I never expected Amari Cooper to fetch a first round pick.  The Giants just traded Damon Harrison to Detroit for a mere fifth round pick.  Harrison is good, young, comes with just a $2.68M cap hit for the rest of 2018, and is under contract for 2019 and 2020 at reasonable cap hits ($7M and $9.25M).  Many will suggest that the Packers should have made that move.  Harrison would have provided excellent depth for multiple years. 

 

Trading Packer Players Away:

I have often read suggestions about trading Cobb, Matthews, or Clinton-Dix to some other team.  All three have some value, even though all three would be one-year rentals unless extensions were part of the trade.  Their cap hits to the acquiring team for the remainder of the season would be $5.37M, $6.43M, $3.5M, respectively.  The Packers would have to eat Cobb’s signing bonus but Matthews and Clinton-Dix have no dead money if traded to another team.

Keeping those players would make the Packers eligible for compensatory picks in the 2020 draft.  That only matters if Green Bay is not a major player in free agency next year.  OTC suggests that Green Bay will have $45.8M in cap space, with Sportrac showing a similar number.  After deducting $5.5M from that estimate (since OTC only shows 40 players under contract and we surely will have 51), that leaves the Packers with $40M to spend. 

It seems reasonable to expect GM Gutekunst to spend $30M on free agents or re-signing current Packers on expiring contracts.  Therefore, keeping these players to get compensatory picks might not be a viable argument.  Below is a spreadsheet showing our Unrestricted Free Agents and a rough prediction as to their value in compensatory draft picks.

    

 

Trading Cobb has poor optics.  It might seem like giving up on the 2018 season.  One could argue that St. Brown or Van-Scantling could be viable internal replacements for 2018.  The optics are even worse for trading Matthews.  Few see any viable replacements for Matthews, unless GM Gutekunst were to acquire an edge player.  I like the notion of acquiring Jerry Hughes as an edge rusher.  Andy Herman recently tweeted that Hughes has more pressures (not sacks) than Matthews, Perry, Gilbert and Fackrell combined.  The optics on trading Clinton-Dix vary widely.  Many consider him to be playing at a pretty high level at present while others view him in scathing terms.  I suppose one could argue that Tramon Williams or someone else could be a viable replacement for Clinton-Dix in 2018. 

Moreover, I have no idea what the safety market will look like in 2019 given its crash in 2018.  It looks like Byron Bell is going to get a chance to prove that he can be a serviceable right guard.  His value depends on how well he performs.  Breeland appears to be the real wild card.  He was recently regarded highly enough to earn a contract for $8M AAV.  Much depends on how he plays for the rest of this year.  These three players all have a ten-game audition coming up.

At any rate, despite a fairly long list of potential free agents, it seems possible that the Packers will sign as many significant free agents as it loses, and/or re-sign some of its own players.  I find it difficult to make the argument that we should keep Player X and just take the compensatory pick: it seems quite possible that Green Bay will not have a net outflow of significant free agents this offseason.      

As a note, I have looked at Overthecap’s projections for estimating what a player’s AAV needs to be to garner a specific compensatory pick.  Since those are for the 2019 draft and we are looking at the 2020 draft, one should add cap inflation of perhaps 10% or so to the AAVs listed. Losing low paid free agents might count overall but probably not as a stand-alone compensatory pick.  The NFL awarded just five 7th round comp picks last season and three in 2017.  Teams can be awarded a maximum of four compensatory picks in any one year.  Green Bay does have four potentially significant free agents.  I would guess they might bring mostly fourth and fifth round compensatory picks, but the Packers would have to abstain from signing any significant free agents and would have to let Cobb, Matthews, Clinton-Dix and Breeland walk.

So, what moves do you think the Packers front office should make, if any?

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (83) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Lare's picture

I think any moves the Packers could make should be with an eye towards next year. Let's face it, with the next five games coming up this season is a crapshoot at this point. Heck we don't even know for sure who the coaches will be next season and what schemes will be run. I certainly wouldn't want them to make any moves in order to help this year that would hurt them in the future.

They definitely need help at OT, OG, FS, SS and OLB. At this point it's probably best to bite the bullet and stand pat with the current roster for this season and concentrate their efforts next offseason.

Bearmeat's picture

The only position I'd trade for would be a couple of wild-cards at Edge player. I'm partial to Fowler, but would be happy with Hughes too. HHCD is here for the year, and we're not going to find anyone better in-season. Ditto that for Spriggs and OT.

As long as we let Cobb, Matthews and HHCD leave for 2019 and find external replacements - either through FA or the draft, I'll be happier going into next year. I have thought from the very beginning that this year was a transition year from Thompson to Gutekunst. Hopefully, MM either gets the team to ball-out or he's gone.

The TKstinator's picture

Mike is showing how much love he has for the running game in the photo above.

dobber's picture

I thought he was telling them how much mayo he wanted on that lunch sub.

The TKstinator's picture

That is an extinct possibility as well.

tincada's picture

What running game. Oh, you mean when he gets run out of town. got it.

jhalwas611.com's picture

I look at this with some concern as the entire focus seems to be on getting defensive players. I feel that upgrading the offensive line and keeping Rodgers upright, opening holes for the run game and giving the defense some rest would benefit the team as a whole.

jeepingmakooi's picture

Bring back Evans.. he played well last season and he wants to play again

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I plead guilty. My only defense is that I haven't seen many players who play on offense mentioned. But perhaps some were mentioned and due to some bias I have those names didn't stick in my memory.

I think you're right though, and I would look hard at any starting caliber OT or RG, and even quality backup types at OG and OC and to a lesser extent given the promise of MVS I'd also look at a boundary WR with speed to burn.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

WR Devante Parker, age 25, a former 1st round pick, has played just 37 snaps. If acquired, his cap hit would be $1.13M, and he is under contract (5th yr. option) for $9.387M for 2019. But his agent just tweeted this: "The only real question that should be asked is how does coach Gase justify his own incompetence?" Not a burner, low catch rate, and decreasing productivity. Miami is looking for a 3rd to dump this cancer.

WR Sanders, age 31, would run GB $4.85M for the rest of 2018 and $10.25M in 2019. Denver would have to eat $5.4M. Benjamin looks like a nice sub for Graham. He'd cost $4.97M for the rest of 2018 and is an UFA in 2019. DeSean Jackson has been mentioned; he'd cost $6.47M for the rest of 2018 and $10M in 2020. Age 31. He certainly fits the bill as a deep threat. I'm actually pretty happy with our young WRs so far, and worry about the trust factor for these short-termers. LeVeon Bell has a lot of mileage and wants enormous money. McCoy works but I like our RBs.

I've read that LT Cedric Ogbuehi is available. He's 26 and a former 1st round pick. His 5th year option was declined so he'd be an UFA in 2019. He'd cost $1M for the rest of 2018. He has played one snap in 2018 so far, but started 25 games in 2016 and 2017. Ogbuehi has been a healthy scratch, and Cincy Jungle describes him as "easily one of the 4-5 worst players on this roster." I gather he can't move OG Redmont, one of the worst starting OGs in the league. Cincy has pretty decent OTs.

mrtundra's picture

If we got LeVeon Bell or LeSean McCoy at RB, MM would platoon either into the RB rotation just like Jones, Williams and Montgomery have been. Neither would get the ball as much as they need to in order to be successful individually or for the team's sake.

tincada's picture

Dreamer! Terrible Ted aka Gute will never go for it as long as there are a bunch of his undrafted or used up FAs are around.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I bought a mega-zillions for the first time ever the other day. Since I like math, I checked the odds, which were very poor indeed. That didn't stop me from estimating how much I'd get after taxes and thinking about what I'd do with the net amount.

Dreamer? Maybe so. But I'm not the only one.

jww061356's picture

I would only be interested in an edge rusher or ......I heard the idea of Ty Montgomery and a 2nd round pick for LeVeon Bell. Imagine.....Bell, Rodgers and Adams next year with MVS in the slot and brown on the other side. The we go hard for pass rushers and a safety in FA and boost the OL and draft another safety and OLB in the draft. A lot of if and buts........but a guy can dream, can't he?

Chuck Farley's picture

Really bell?. First mm doesnt like bell size and style ru ners or he could have drafted him. They passed. He bulls in the China shop runners.

dobber's picture

The last RB that MM liked giving the ball to very much was Eddie Lacy. How can you reconcile that with your comments? Bell is just as strong, shiftier and better in the pass game.

I rarely say this, but you're either dumb or you're a troll. You make me feel like my IQ drops every time I read your comments.

The TKstinator's picture

At least the writing skills are strong.

dobber's picture

When he dies, on his deathbed, he will receive total consciousness. So he has that going for him...

Gunga galunga.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X48G7Y0VWW4

The TKstinator's picture

He also thinks like a gopher, and we’d prefer he swim in the pond rather than the pool.

Handsback's picture

One thing that we have have found out through the years is that Green Bay does the unexpected. I wouldn't think a trade for Bell would make any sense.....but in reality it does. It takes the two players that are RBs for the Packers and replaces them with one guy who's better than both. He's a better runner than Jones and better receiver than Monty. The problem is his attitude. Not sure his salary and attitude would go over very well in Green Bay locker room.

He would be a shot in the arm that Green Bay could use and the other would be ANY safety guy. I would say pass rusher, but would rather stop the long bombs from happening than the difference between Green Bay's pass rushers and what's available.

stockholder's picture

Why trade any player? The packers will get a 3 rd comp for any. MM has coached with these guys. The list is shameful when you Look/expect returns. ( Especially If you look at the talent the packers are signing in return. ) MM is doing one hell of a job! Harrison would have been perfect. The Lions win again. The biggest trade the packers need to do is for Offensive Lineman. A 6 or 7th should get quality depth even better. The packers need defense yet. They cannot waste early picks on this OL. Beef it up.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

They possibly get as high as end of the third round two drafts away if they don't acquire similar free agent talent. In a trade they'd know exactly what they get and exactly when. Very different, the Comp Pick formula is a heavily guarded secret.

stockholder's picture

You know their gone any way. Remember these picks are tradable now. I don't like the packers track record of signing or trading vets now. We just aren't going to get a Reggie White again. Lets say cmII leaves. There goes pick #1. Dix leaves Pick #1 . /2 Gone. Cobb, being they turned around Adams . - A Rookie can take his place. Perry- Cut or trade, And if they won't play Jones trade him. Pick #Rd. 2 Gone. Wilkerson, Ryan, Monty are going to get better offers. The best way to improve the off. line is go after a vet. Gute has the best draft to fit the packers defense. I believe all the guys will hELP any team yet. It's to bad we keep putting are selves in the hole.

stockholder's picture

Best fit players. Wilkersons - Replaced with Reckwon Davis Alabama, CMIII replaced with Terrel Lewis OLB Alabama, Perry Replaced with Jaylon Ferguson Louisiana Tech. Dix replaced with Jordan Fuller Ohio st. Just don't trade yet. Let's just WAIT are Turn, and see what plays out.

Chuck Farley's picture

Just who would want out out dated incompetent players? Mathews is a has been, Cobb isn't even avg, did is horsebleep. The only value guys may be scantling, and st brown. This team has more deadwood then the black forest.

Since '61's picture

If the Packers could get Landon Collins for a 3rd or 4th round pick, they should make that move. The Giants are beginning a fire sale and Collins is only 25. He played at an all-pro level in 2016 and he could be an immediate upgrade to our safety group.

He is better than Brice and possibly better than Dix at this point. He brings good experience and would not be that expensive in terms of a cap hit.

After Collins I would look for an Edge rusher but I'm not that high on any one on TGRs list.

TGR thanks for your efforts and a nice job on putting the lists and your article together. Thanks, Since '61

Tundraboy's picture

Great idea. Can you get Mara on the phone?

Old School's picture

Trade away nobody. Try to acquire Karl Joseph for a draft pick.....it is unlikely we could draft a starting caliber safety at the end of the second who would be as good..

The idea of trading away starters when you're trying o win this year...….that's just nuts, IMO.

Colin_C's picture

I agree wholeheartedly. I'd like Collins, but Joseph should be cheaper to acquire, isn't in a contract year, and probably has higher upside.

PAPackerbacker's picture

I agree Old School. Trading away starters in mid season doesn't make any sense at all. The depth on the roster is pretty weak to be losing your starters.

Rak47's picture

Imho, I don't think Chandler Jones would cost a first considering his age [29] and only one year left on his contract. I'm pretty sure Arizona is looking to rebuild and a second round pick would look nice for a guy they're most likely not going to resign after next season. It would be great if Gute could get Jones at his price then turn and deal Perry or Mathews to Buffalo along with a 4th for Hughes to open up some cap space. The Packers would instantly have a huge upgrade to their ability to pressure the QB.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Chandler Jones is 28 (29 in 2019) but he is under contract for 2019 (our cap hit would be $16.5M), 2020 ($16M) and 2021 ($15.5M), when he would be 31. Though those are big numbers, he is a proven commodity and comes with no dead money in case he doesn't work out. 2019 to 2021 is three full seasons; moreover, they are the three seasons AR is likely to remain in his prime. It would take some work fitting him into the cap this season though.

I am often surprised by the trade compensation, but note that ARI would have to eat $9M in dead money if they traded Jones. He is on pace for 15 sacks this season. IDK but I'd want at least a first for him.

flackcatcher's picture

At least our owner is not Jerry Jones. I thought his son had him lock up to prevent trades like that. A no 1. NUMBER 1 for hands of stone, major head case A. Cooper. Only a deranged fan would make that trade.....

dobber's picture

It's desperation in light of the fact that they now realize that their run game/OL isn't as dominant as it was a couple years ago and can't take heat off a so-so passer and zero in the WR department.

Samson's picture

Trades during the season??
An off-season trade is big news in the NFL. -- Who trades players during the season??

PatrickGB's picture

Agree, I think that it isn’t going to happen. This is more like an expression of the frustration that fans feel when things are not going our way. Gute is not TT but I doubt that he would actually make a trade this late in the season. It’s just kinda interesting stuff to talk about. It’s not realistic but heck, why not? We can dream.

PAPackerbacker's picture

Trading starters in the middle of the season makes no sense at all. If you do bring in a player in mid season they will have to learn the system. Even a veteran will admit it takes time to learn a new system.

The TKstinator's picture

Great work TGR; thank you.

MarkinMadison's picture

I'm not on board with trading anyone away. I think this year is a lost cause - that will show out one way or the other over the next five weeks. But if you send players away, particularly at areas of need like safety and OLB, you are sending the wrong message to the team and probably increasing the injury risk to your remaining players at weak position groups as a smaller number of men try to carry the load. The only one they could get away with trading is Cobb, and what are you really going to get for a one-year rental?

On the flip side adding at safety or OLB would be a good move. We need better depth, hell even a better starter, at these positions. As long as they are not one-year rentals, I'm all for it.

PAPackerbacker's picture

I think the Packers should have signed an edge rusher instead of Danny Vitale. Or signed a decent OLB or Safety instead. That's where the need is, not FB. The Packers backs are under used now. There's little to be gained by trading Matthews, Cobb, or Clinton-Dix now. I doubt any one of them would draw much interest from other teams where it would be beneficial to the Packers. Trading players, especially starters, during the season makes no sense. Build from the draft next year and sign some FA's that will make an immediate impact and cut the players who seem to be injured most of the time and cut the underachievers. Once the season is over then it will be time to clean house.

dobber's picture

"I think the Packers should have signed an edge rusher instead of Danny Vitale. Or signed a decent OLB or Safety instead. "

Like who? Any "decent" pass rusher is on someone's roster and likely playing.

I would argue that teams that are selling at this point don't want players, they want draft picks. That means the Packers, who won't be getting any compensatory picks this offseason, will have to part with limited draft capital to fill holes. I don't think they'll do that for 1-year rentals, and if they're going to take a flier on a younger guy who hasn't panned out somewhere else, the question is: do you part with much to get that player knowing that you may need to extend him before you know what you have?

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Well said. For example, Devante Parker has a 5th-year option at $9.3M. We'd get a look at him over the next 10 games, but I have to wonder how much of a look we'd get? Who is losing snaps so we can look at Parker?
We'd have to decide in early March to cut him (last year the deadline was March 14) or his $9.3M base salary becomes guaranteed. Besides, we'd have two Devante (spelled slightly differently), so that's the clincher. DeSean Jackson fits the bill, but I'd have to have someone tell me if he is AR's kind of receiver.

I am unconvinced that GB should be sellers. However, PApackfan, if you want to build through the draft, a team needs draft picks. I've no idea what Cobb, CM3 or HHCD would fetch, and only Gute has an idea whether we'll get comp picks eventually if we let them walk, but I am open to the possibility of not getting any comp picks even if all 5 name guys (Breeland and Wilkerson) walk.

PAPackerbacker's picture

I don't know the answer to your question. I agree any good player is on another roster now. That's my point. Why trade your starters in mid season? Should have been done before the season started. Even a veteran will say they need time to learn a new system. So trading a starter in mid season makes little sense. Unless of course you can get a decent draft choice for next year. I have no idea what kind of pick the Packers could get for Matthews, Cobb, or Clinton-Dix. But for sure there isn't much on the roster to choose from to fill the need this season had they traded any of them. Signing a LB or Safety would have made more sense than another FB.

Turophile's picture

Quote from James "I find it difficult to make the argument that we should keep Player X and just take the compensatory pick:"

I presume you meant to say 'lose', instead of keep. I am curious why you do not think letting players go (and getting the compensatory) is necessarily a bad idea. To me, it's like a final gift from players you are moving on from.

Obviously this is a move that only takes place if you intend to replace a player anyway, with a better, often cheaper alternative (sometimes both)..........but those comp picks are quite valuable in filling out the roster depth.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I trimmed verbiage in editing since the article was pretty long. "I find it difficult to make the argument that we should keep Player X [for the remainder of the season to make Player X eligible for the compensatory pick formula later, then let X walk] and just take the comp pick."

The reason is that I expect Gute so spend $30M in FA next offseason, thereby canceling all of the comp picks GB would have gotten for Cobb, CM3, HHCD, and Breeland. Maybe we pick up a 6th or a 7th round comp pick for Wilkerson, Bell, Monty, or Kendricks, but there is a decent chance all of them sign for very little or re-sign with GB.

Only Gute has an idea about how active he intends to be in FA or in re-signing our own given he should have up to $40M to spend. Of course, he might make offers but get outbid by some other teams with massive cap space, or some of his targets might get signed prior to the beginning of FA.

bodei1newbie1's picture

i look at it like this either try to win now or (i hate to say this tank) and don't give cobb ,matthews and contract and maybe get into the free ageny market next year
ps
rodgers isn't getting any younger so you have to shore up the o-line and the defensives line ,mcarthy will be fired by then and get somebody who is more innovative with play calling

The TKstinator's picture

Again with the play calling.

Listen to the TV commentators after a play gains a bundle: “What a well designed play!” Honest to god, is there such a thing as a poorly designed play?? Or, when the same play that gained yards earlier fails to work, did it miraculously go from being “well designed” to “poorly designed”, “predictable”, “stale”, etc?

More likely it comes down to execution and the particular defensive scheme/matchup on any given play.

Do we REALLY think that the guys who’ve done this their whole lives and do it for a living know LESS about all this than WE do???

Oh sure we get frustrated by lack of results but to think it’s because the coaches are DUMBER than us is, well,...dumb.

Daren726's picture

While we could use help at interior OL and safety, and I could see upgrading there I wouldn’t go too much farther this year. If MM isn’t here next year they may have an entirely different coaching staff and scheme. The types of players they are looking for could change dramatically.

flackcatcher's picture

Thanks James. This gives us a good idea of what Gute will have to work with cap wise going into next season. I think the roster is set for the rest of the season. Their one major weakness as they saw it was covered by the Breland signing. Packers have always been very careful in signing players during the season. We saw the chaos that can cause in the offensive line last year. But, I wonder about McCray. That shoulder must be pretty bad to keep him on the sideline. Outside of Spriggs who is pretty beat up himself, that leaves what? Patrick. They have no choice but to play Bell. Overall, he has been OK. Packers must have looked long and hard, before deciding to go with what they had. Who would have thought, QB and OT, the two toughest positions to fill in the NFL.

dobber's picture

"But, I wonder about McCray. That shoulder must be pretty bad to keep him on the sideline."

I think it's that the whole package wasn't very good.

flackcatcher's picture

Could be, but he's played one half this year and that's it. My thinking is he was not completely heal up and rip something else on that side. Whatever is going on, it seems the Packers have only one healthy OL backup right now.

John Galt's picture

This season is so over. Trade declining players to contending teams for future draft picks.

Use next year's (2) no.1 picks to get a QB.

The TKstinator's picture

Nothing is over until WE say it’s over!!

Since '61's picture

Exactly. "Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?"
Thanks, Since '61

The TKstinator's picture

Classic!
I was lobbing it in there HOPING someone would knock it out of the park.
Well done, 61!

dobber's picture

HELL NO!!!

John Galt's picture

You must have have been brainwashed in a public school. The Japs
bombed Pearl Harbor 12/7. We then declared war on them- 12/8. The Nazis then declared war on us 12/11.

Back to your comic books and cartoon shows.

Anyway, this season is finished. Get over it.

dobber's picture

youtube.com/watch?v=V8lT1o0sDwI

The TKstinator's picture

@JG: Lighten up, Francis, it’s from Animal House.

(And Francis is from Stripes.)

dobber's picture

...or Pee Wee's Big Adventure.

The TKstinator's picture

Either way, the light of heart shall inherit the earth.

(I think that’s from Pulp Fiction.)

Bearmeat's picture

Unreal. I was just talking about Pee Wee Herman with my students this afternoon. That dude freaked me out as a kid - well before the exposing himself to patrons of an X-Rated theater thing....

The TKstinator's picture

Tequila!

RCPackerFan's picture

I don't think the Packers make any trades.

Now that being said IF they were to make a trade it should be for an OLB. They need to improve the pass rush. So on this list I would be looking at Jerry Hughes, Shaquil Barrett, and Dante Fowler.
If they can get any of these guys for a late round pick. I would probably do it.

Hughes is the most experienced and productive of the 3 and his salary cap isn't that bad. He would be my choice.

stockholder's picture

Every player has peaks and valleys. They must get more from Perry and CMIII. Thats just the way it Is. The problem is you still have to pay these guys. Gute can't make cap mistakes. The sacks/pressures are poor when you pay them so much. But how much have the refs calls against CMIII cost us. Most avalible players are over hyped. BUYER BEWARE!

RCPackerFan's picture

The problem right now, is that they don't have another option. Fackrell while I will admit has been a little better then nothing, doesn't provide much and Gilbert really has done nothing.

Hughes would be my top pick. His salary isn't bad. He has 4.5 sacks on the year.
Packers have 2 players that lead the team with 3 sacks each. Who would have guess that our sack leaders would be Blake Martinez and Kyler Fackrell.
Our top pass rushers have 1.5 each. To be fair Mathews had one taken away on a crap penalty. Gilbert also has 1.5.

Hughes could have an impact on the defense. For a 4-6th round pick, I would take that!

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Those three edge guys also fit under the cap without having to disturb other contracts. Hughes provides the most immediate help and his cap # is fine for 2019 (but he might want an extension). Not sure how to handle Fowler and Barret since they are 10 game rentals.

If you think about it, Harrison was available for almost exactly the same price Wilkerson cost, well plus a 5th rounder, and he's under reasonable cap #s for two more seasons with no dead money. Detroit got a deal. I've read that GB has split Daniels out wider lately, and I wonder if Clark could play some 3 Technique with Harrison at nose. That's a stout line when all 3 are on the field together, or one with good rotation with Lowry available. Oh well, he is 30 and it's a moot point.

stockholder's picture

I wonder if Clark could play some 3 Technique with Harrison at nose. Thats what I keep seeing! I don't believe the packers were that impressed with Wilkerson. I believe they draft another DL in rd 1. Wilkins or Davis in the 3 Tech. Move Clark? or draft a NT again. Lowrey plays better over the RT.

dobber's picture

Harrison's already off the chart...been traded to the Lions.

The TKstinator's picture

As have the Snacks.

RCPackerFan's picture

Completely agree. Thats why those 3 would be my choice.

To help this year Hughes is my pick. I explained a little more above why. But to me that would be the reason why I would go for him.

Now who knows the Bills may want a 2nd round pick for him. For that no.

I do think the Lions got a good deal on Harrison.

dobber's picture

Harrison was potentially a steal.

PAPackerbacker's picture

I agree, IF they make a trade it should be for aa OLB. I guess there are players that could fill the Packers needs now. That would answer the question as to who is available. Looks like a pretty good list to pick from. Better than choosing a FB.

jeepingmakooi's picture

I see bell house Ryan Kendricks toomer Lewis and Matthews possibly retire this year. I know everyone hates on Cobb but I see him staying one a cheaper deal. Bell has no worth besides depth and that is showing right now... House is garbage and I couldn't believe they brought him back again.. Ryan isn't fantastic and with Morrison and Burks playing I don't see them keeping him around..Kendricks .. I don't even know what he does that tonyon can't do? Toomer has had a couple nice plays.. but his age is his downside. And Matthews I don't see many teams picking up a 33 year old Goldie locks pass rusher ... Esp in the golden age of young and powerful and fast olb

LambeauPlain's picture

If Gute could get Shane Ray for less than $1 mil and a 5th or 6th for the remaining season to "kick the tires" and see if he is then answer for 2019 at OLB...do it.

His wrist injury is behind him but he did tweak an ankle in practice and missed last Thursday's game.

There are some other interesting EDGE players too that could help fill a large hole on the D.

jeepingmakooi's picture

I still like Fowler better the. Ray.

jeepingmakooi's picture

Then*

Oppy's picture

**Than

;)

The TKstinator's picture

“Your welcome”
;)

jeepingmakooi's picture

I hate the internet. Lol

stockholder's picture

Trade- Ok try this. Packers/Saints first round trade goes to Ny Giants for Oliver Vernon and Lorenzo Carter. These guys will be OLBs. Both should be able to play the 3-4-4

stockholder's picture

: )

cpheph1's picture

I realize you posted this blog on Oct. 24 and I'm late to the party so to speak but so what...anyway, love reading your cap related blogs, mainly because it's something I used to do...but I digress. Anyway, nice blog and excellent graphics. My comments are JMO and no offense intended. Also, I've had one more game to evaluate the state-of-the Pack seeing that you wrote the blog prior to the Rams game.

I liked all the options/scenarios regarding player acquisition...there's still time left to make a deal. I'm also hoping that the Packers don't trade HHCD...but I'm in the minority but that's ok.

I wouldn't trade HaHa Clinton-Dix under any circumstance unless they got somebody like Landon Collins as a replacement. I'm leaning towards resigning HHCD…but I'm in the minority. I'd also prefer to resign CM3 but I'm in the minority there too…trading him isn't an option IMO. I'd offer both players a reasonable/fair offer based on similar player level contracts and my projections/expectations of their future play. CM3 is still an above average LB who offers versatility on where he plays/is used. He still hustles and that still counts IMO.

Trading any Packers players in 2018 will have poor optics unless they can get significant trade value (i.e., more than the players' projected compensatory value you provided in your 2nd graphic). I don't have Jon Gruden's mentality so I wouldn't trade good players unless they negatively affected the locker-room. Acquiring players would have good optics…only a few hours left…we know Gute can make a player-for-player trade…but if he values draft picks as much as Ted did then there's no chance he'll make a trade. It's also very likely we'll never know how serious any trade talks were.

You make a reasonable assumption regarding Gute's potential to spend $30m on UFA or resigning current players based on the potential pending cap space they'll have ($40+M).

Based on your graphic depicting pending UFAs that Gute has to appraise it appears that "Fair Market Value" is an annual average. I won't quibble with the numbers because your WAG is as good as any.

I've said it before so I'll say it again, I'd really like to resign both CM3 and HHCD. I think the numbers you project are also reasonable. One option they can do with HHCD is the franchise or transition tag…just another option to consider. I wouldn't franchise CM3. Bell is ok at RG so he's definitely a consideration to resign but I'd look to do better in FA. I'd give Wilkerson another shot even if the potential cost is what they gave him in 2018; they need a fourth DL player / more depth because I'm not sold on Montravious Adams.

TE will be a big need because I think they need to replace Kendricks and Lewis hasn't shown much as a blocker that I can remember. I wouldn't resign Cobb or Montgomery. Ryan, House, and Toomer are JAGs and not needed.

Still haven't seen what Breeland has to show in Pettine's defense. 9 games left to evaluate him… Pettine likes CBs and you can never have too many especially when teams play four and five WR or can play five guys that are good receivers regardless of position…means coverage guys are premium.

Kentrell Brice will be an RFA...at this point I wouldn't give him a tender.

Have to get an Edge rusher / pass rusher in FA and the draft.

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