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Packers Can't Afford to Stand Pat at Wide Receiver

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Packers Can't Afford to Stand Pat at Wide Receiver

Green Bay Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst has a lot of work to do in the coming weeks and months, but while the focus needs to be on the defense, one position that can’t be ignored is wide receiver.

Of course, this is nothing new. The debate about what needs to be done at wide receiver has raged among Packers fans for the past two months. The good news was that Green Bay locked up Davante Adams, but there is still work to do.

The two biggest questions looming are what to do with Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb? Both players have one year remaining on their deals and both will make more than $12 million dollars if they play out those deals this season.

While it’s hard to see both players getting cut, it’s hard to see both playing in Green Bay next season for a combined total that equals $25.2 million.

With Aaron Rodgers out for a good chunk of the season, both players averaged less than 10 yards a reception. Nelson didn’t catch a touchdown pass in the last 11 games. Cobb finished with just four.

Since signing his contract, Cobb has clearly been a disappointment. He has had some injury issues, but still caught 79, 60 and 66 passes over the past three seasons. However, he hasn’t reached 1,000 yards in the past three years and hasn’t lived up the contract he signed just before free agency in 2015.

Nelson, on the other hand, has been very productive. He has clearly lost a little something and is no longer the deep threat he once was, but in 2016, he led the NFL with 14 touchdown receptions. He also had more than 1,200 yards.

Who knows if Rodgers had been able to 16 games, maybe we wouldn’t be as worried about Nelson. His numbers probably wouldn’t have equaled 2016, but he likely would have caught double-digit touchdowns and eclipsed 1,000 yards.

The question is, with Rodgers back next season, can Jordy still be productive? And secondly, will that production be worth anything close to $12 million?

That’s a tough question to answer. But knowing Nelson’s team-first attitude, maybe he would be willing to re-work his deal. If he was willing to play two or three more seasons, maybe Green Bay could get him to sign a deal that averaged $7-8 million annually over 2-3 years.

On the other hand, Nelson has left plenty of money on the table in past negotiations and might not want to do so again. Cobb might be willing to do something similar, but it’s unlikely they will just agree to lower their base salaries in 2018. 

So how does Gutekunst navigate that? I doubt he wants to get rid of Nelson and Cobb in the same offseason. If he does, the Packers will essentially be left with Michael Clark, Trevor Davis and last season’s fifth-round draft pick DeAngelo Yancey. Although Ty Montgomery might also be thrown back into the mix.

Obviously, the Packers would add guys in the draft or free agency if they released Nelson and Cobb, but still, finding two starting caliber wide receivers isn’t going to be easy. Yet some combination of Adams, Clark, Davis and Montgomery won’t cut it either.

Getting anything done in free agency is going to be expensive. So would the Packers really save much money by cutting Nelson and/or Cobb and getting a free agent like Marquise Lee, Allen Robinson, Jarvis Landry, Sammy Watkins or Paul Richardson?

The other option is the draft. Green Bay has had success getting receivers in the second and third rounds in the past, but with needs at edge rusher, linebacker, secondary, tight end and the offensive line, it might be hard to justify an early-round pick on a pass catcher.

The one thing that’s true is that the Packers can’t afford to stand pat. They need more production from wide receivers. Whether it’s keeping Nelson and Cobb and adding a draft pick, or dumping both, moving Monty back to wide receiver and using the draft and free agency to replenish or some other combination of moves, Green Bay needs to do something.

In the NFL, you never stay the same. You are either getting better or worse and if the Packers don’t make some bold moves to address receiver, they will be getting worse and with Rodgers in the last few years of his prime, that doesn't seem very smart. 

__________________________

Chris is a sports journalist from Montana and has been blogging about the Packers since 2011. Chris has been a staff writer for CheeseheadTV since 2017 and looks forward to the day when Aaron Rodgers wins his second Super Bowl. Follow him @thepackersguru

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (121) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

Were screwed. I think we just have too many needs and i dont know if they can be solved in 1 year. Maybe 2 or 3 years if we make all the right moves and if players make a leap between last year and this year.

By then we better have another QB to get ready to take A. Rogers place.

Vrog's picture

Very upbeat, Doug.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

I live in a world of reality. Packer fans should have been picketing outside the stadium for the past 6 years to FIRE Dom Capers, but because the Packer fans stayed passive we have what we have right now a team now in rebuilding mode.

We WASTED 6 potentially GREAT years!

dobber's picture

We all choose our realities, Doug.

John Kirk's picture

We should still be picketing because the guy who defended him all those years is still our enabler, oops, HC. Dom doesn't have a job if MM doesn't say he does. Not only did MM get to stay on as HC, he got to sit in on the GM interviews. In what world does that happen?

Hard to have faith in an org who let Ted be Ted for so many years, only to move him to another role when a firing was more than called for years ago and then holding on to Capers for years too long and then retaining the HC who defended him all those years. All of these things under the blind eyes of Mark Murphy who now all of a sudden has everything and everyone under a microscope?

I watched a bunch of stuff on the SB win over Pittsburgh over the last couple of days. I remember what I thought back then. We were a sure dynasty in the making. Next season 15-1 and one and done in the playoffs. Never back to the show again. Just really really hard to swallow comparing what actually happened since, and what I believed back then.

Since '61's picture

I was there, where were you? Thanks, Since ‘61

John Kirk's picture

You were picketing outside 1265 or you were at the SB game?

I was less than an hour down the road from ATT stadium watching the SB in my living room saving 2k on nose bleed seats. Couldn't justify the money as a married guy with kids especially for the kind of seats I would've gotten.

As a single guy, I was there in back to back years for the NFC Championship games we won over Carolina and at SF the following year...got on TV, too, behind the Packers bench where a local TV station interviewed me about the Packers chances vs. Denver. I snuck down right behind the bench as the stadium was emptying of Niners fans. Had a long walk back to the hotel soaking wet in my #4 jersey...was afraid I was going to get beat up. Thankfully, it was SF and not Philly.

Turophile's picture

You are both right, and wrong, Doug. Suppose the Packers add a reasonable vet CB. Maybe a vet WR as well. Then end up with a draft like:

1) Edge Landry - Boston
2) WR Gallup - Colorado St.
3) TE Gesicki or Thomas
3c) CB M.J.Stewart N.Carolina (may have to trade up a bit, for him).

That goes a long way to fixing the obvious holes.

The bad news is you cannot expect too much from these guys in their rookie years, even if they do develop well. So while the Packers are not screwed, this draft will not solve much THIS YEAR. Rodgers coming back helps the team a huge amount, but second year jumps from the Packers picks in the first four rounds of 2017, King, Biegel, Montravius Adams, J.jones would be very welcome........so would Spriggs developing into a decent tackle.

Add it all together, Rodgers return plus the veteran additions, second year jumps, and at least some contribution from the rooks, the Packers could be good in 2018.............but they could be much better in 2019. Let's hope Gute is a draft guru.

John Kirk's picture

"That goes a long way to fixing the obvious holes."

Nobody knows how any draftee or FA is going to work out.

When you're as roster poor as we are, you're counting an awful lot on being right well above the average. It would take one miraculous offseason to allay Doug's concerns. Is that possible? Sure. LIkely? No.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

Thank you.

stockholder's picture

Turo- wasted Picks. Gallup is not a deep threat. 4.55. We already have good route runners.

stockholder's picture

D P.

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Nick Perry's picture

NO ONE FRICKEN CARES!!!!!!!!!!!

GLM's picture

Will the moderator please dispose of the Angela22 troll?

dobber's picture

The Saints went from a relatively roster poor position with an HOF QB and some serious cap issues/dead money to winning the best division in the NFL (and coming one stupid play from the NFCCG) in 2017 in one off-season. Is it easy to do? No. But it can happen, and when you've got the keystone position covered, that helps.

John Kirk's picture

Right...Saints...total outlier. Not a typical draft or offseason. Will be miraculous for us to do the same. 1st year GM. If he's sensational perhaps it's possible. A lot has to go right. That is unlikely but sure it's possible.

I understand being optimistic but fans tend to skew toward unrealistic ends all the time. Those who are more realistic are no friend to the typical mindset.

dobber's picture

There are radical shifts in W/L records every year, John, for any number of reasons. In this case, it looks like it wasn't lightning in a bottle for the Saints, and I would argue that even if they ditch Drew Brees this off-season, they're set to be competitive even with an average NFL starter under center. I'll thank you, though, for reaffirming my statement that a roster turnaround like this wouldn't be easy.

John Kirk's picture

Yeah, those radical swings come in the form of HC changes or personnel changes. Perhaps, our coordinator changes are enough. I'd certainly like more on the personnel side of things.

Saints showed that a couple of budding young stars can turn the entire fortunes of your franchise around. Lattimore and Kamara were two of them. It's crazier that the Saints had 7 picks last season and hauled in this first 5:

Marshon Lattimore
Ryan Ramczyk
Marcus Williams
Alvin Kamara
Alex Anzalone

I don't think we've gotten that much talent from the draft in the last 5 combined and certainly not the star power of Lattimore and Kamara. It's funny they lost Cooks who was playing for peanuts and replaced him with Ginn for a few million more and still had the turnaround they had.

Only had 12 picks over last two drafts...Rankins and Michael Thomas from two years ago with Ken Crawley as a non drafted guy.

Lphill's picture

I think Jordy stays he is a Packer , Cobb is younger and maybe takes the best deal available I would too . Unless he wants to stay for a title.

Chris Peterson's picture

My solution is to work out something with Jordy. Make the same offer to Cobb and cut him if not. Make Monty a slot guy again and add a free agent and a draft pick. Gonna need to add outside talent. That's the bottom line.

Bearmeat's picture

Agreed 100%. Jordy is not a #1 anymore, and Cobb is not a #2 anymore. Neither are worth even 5 million AAV, and both are getting up there. Green Bay NEEDS better separation out of their WRs and they can't spend as much as they have.

That means 1 has to go, the other has to take a paycut, and a faster boundary WR outside of the organization must be found - preferably (for me) in FA.

This also has the benefit of moving Monty back to a slot type role.

Turophile's picture

Maybe not worth $5m if it was the wages of five years ago Bearmeat, but these are not those days. Here are the scenarios.

Packers get a veteran flanker type WR and draft one in round 2 of this draft.
They can release Nelson this year and let the new draftee sub in and out with the newly acquired vet.

Alternatively they keep Jordy at a lesser salary (but maybe just a bit more than $5m) and sub the rookie in and out with Jordy. Jordy's contract ends after 2018, so he could stay one year on the lesser deal, before letting him go and taking the training wheels off of the rookie in his second year.

If Jordy is gone, Cobb has a greater value for one year (after which his contract expires). That means if you want to let him go after 2018, you need to get a new slot guy (that won't be Montgomery, he is much better at RB), so you have to plan for that. You cannot really afford two high picks at WR this year (too many other needs), so you might have to hope a higher WR pick again in 2019, can start fast in the slot.

I'm not sure that any veteran WR acquired this year would be better than Cobb in the slot, though they should be cheaper.

I wouldn't recommend getting rid of Cobb this year over Nelson, because he is 28 before the next regular season starts, while Nelson is 33. and that 5 year difference is huge.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

Cobb is done....I am positive that Jordy can put up 1000 yards next year and 800 the following year.
2 year for Jordy. Cobb bye bye. But we also need a free agent WR..

dobber's picture

Who are they going to get on the FA market to replace the production of Cobb/Nelson who won't cost more than those guys?

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I think there are several FAs who cost less than $9.5M that can completely replace Nelson's and/or Cobb's production. Richardson, Lee, maybe Moncrief, come to mind. In addition, I think Nelson can replace Cobb's production if moved to the slot, and I think Nelson would play for less than $9.5M by a couple of million anyway.

dobber's picture

My point is that people seem to be asserting that there are proven, high-end outside WR sitting around out there waiting to be gobbled up in FA at a much lower cap number than Cobb or Nelson command...and that the Packers can just snap their fingers and get them. I just don't see that in this year's FA WR class and the Packers don't have the resources to win bidding wars. Just as many questions as there are potential answers...

Fordham Ram's picture

My friend, you said in a few words, what I was trying to say in a meandering post you responded to the other day. What it boils down to for me is that I see Cobb and Nelson as original Packers, they never played for another team, whoever else we bring in will just be a hired gun in my mind. I'll have a hard time identifying with them whoever it is. Hopefully they work something out and then focus on the tight end position where the need really is.

Nick Perry's picture

BOOM...Simple and to the point. I think BM summed up EXACTLY what needs to happen, what should happen, and hopefully what does happen at 1265 Lombardi.

They also need to address the position early in the draft (no later than third round and not the comp pick either) as well.

Nick Perry's picture

I just watched the Seattle vs Houston game this weekend in a replay on NFL Network. WATCH Paul Richardson in that game, he was amazing! I've been on the Richardson bandwagon for about 6 months now. The Packers NEED to address the position in the draft, no doubt about it and BEFORE the 5th or 7th rounds. But adding a WR who's played in the NFL isn't going to take nearly as long to learn our system and NFL defenses.

Bearmeat's picture

That's why I'd be all about adding a FA WR with wheels (such as Richardson) and a FA CB who can do man to man well (such as Talib). Those positions take time to become good pros. Rooks are rarely game changers there like they are at OG, RB, OT, or ILB.

We don't have a 7 year window. We may not even have a 5 year window. We have to go for broke NOW. As in, we want to be really good for the next three years, before ARod gets too old.

Tundraboy's picture

Thank you Another key position that was danced around for multiple years, that is now a greater concern than it should have been. Window is now smaller with little if any margin for error. Time to make hay.

DD's picture

Agree. I feel both Cobb and Nelson must restructure. No choice, or get traded or released. They have Rodgers, and still can be productive. As far as other receivers, including our tight ends, other then Adams, and Ty maybe to slot I have some concerns with my eye test to date as far as value. May have to do some major housecleaning! Draft, FA, or hold an open Packers tryout day or two for receivers!

Coldworld's picture

I think that, if Nelson’s decline is real, and the coaches should know, then restructuring is only a good idea if there is no serviceable alternative with potential.

If Cobb leaves, then perhaps, but otherwise Nelson will only take playing time from somebody who may be on the up and need the snaps.

At this point, however, I don’t see anyone on the current roster who is a genuine boundary receiver opposite Adams or who is anything more than depth behind the top 3. Losing Cobb would be highly risky under such circumstances.

Therefore, even with Both Cobb and Nelson, we still need a boundary receiver with speed now. Rookie receivers rarely contribute heavily, so for me we have to go free agency if we are serious about a potent passing game.

For me, that makes keeping Nelson difficult not only on grounds of salary but because if we let Cobb escape we would be building from one proven receiver in the position they would be playing. I don’t think that is a good odds approach.

Packer Fan's picture

Totally agreed. Monty needs to be the hybrid slot receiver and running back. Nelson's best fit will be slot now. So we have three slot receivers. Either Nelson or Cobb. I would suggest to trade Cobb to a team that can take on his salary. Get a lower paid vet to fill one of the holes and maybe another draft choice. 2019 would be fine. Then get a fast guy like Richardson and draft a WR in the 2nd or 3rd round.

Turophile's picture

"I would suggest to trade Cobb to a team that can take on his salary."

I got a good laugh out of that one, Packer Fan.

Royalty Free GM's picture

I think drafting WR Ridley is the most important move Packers can make in this draft.
This offense would create points... a lot of points.
Make this happen;

Adams (25)
Ridley (23)
Nelson (32)
Richardson (25)

Even trade up couple spots to get Ridley.
Keep Nelson if he restructures... and cut Cobb, use those money to get FA Richardson.

Arod is not getting any younger. This combo of WRs (young and veteran) would give a good continuity to work with in years to come. I believe Nelson has two good years left in him and he would be a good role model to younger WRs.

We need to draft the best available WR now! If it takes some time a rookie WR to develop, it is more compelling reason to draft WR now.

This is our rare change to get the #1 WR of the draft. In coming years we are picking again closer to #30 spot than #14.
We don’t need to be TT-boring anymore, let’s do bold moves and give this team chance to win now!

Royalty Free GM's picture

... and Montgomery (25)
Hybrid WR/RB.

Since '61's picture

I know, let’s have another 5 or 6 articles this week discussing the Packers situation at WR. I realize it’s the off-season but we have a few other position groups on the team. ILB or OLB for a change of pace maybe. Yawn until September. Fortunately baseball season is on the horizon. Thanks, Since ‘61

flackcatcher's picture

I had a pretty tough response to Chris's post here. I deleted it. No need to be a flaming jerk. I understand this is the result of the massive change we are seeing in Packer world. The truth is we know nothing, and the answers we seek will not arrive till the beginning of the draft. As you suggest '61, perhaps the writers of cheesehead tv should expand their football horizons a bit. And the rest of us, to quote a certain quarterback "R-E-L-A-X".

Coldworld's picture

Well at least until FA starts .... One bad side effect of missing the playoffs is that we have run through all the positions and players that much earlier. Let’s not do that next year.

Royalty Free GM's picture

Since61: If you have to choose 2nd round pick from one of these positions; ILB, OLB or CB. Which one would you choose and who would you pick?

nigrivasilayesrej's picture

Stand pat with Jordy (better slot receiver right now than Cobb). Try to restructure Cobb, if unwilling to take a pay cut, bye bye. Draft Christian Kirk, DJ Moore, Court Sutton, or Deon Cain in the 2nd. Packers REALLY need a game changer at TE. Burton or Graham in FA would be an upgrade. I would also look at Goedert, Andrews, Hurst, or Gisecki as options in Rd2 or Rd3.

John Kirk's picture

Jordy in the slot is a terrible idea. He's not quick twitch/explosive or shifty. That's what you want from a slot guy. Jordy is a build up speed guy. A guy who can't separate quickly doesn't belong in the slot and that's not Jordy's strong suit at all.

If he can't be an effective outside guy anymore, the sentiment needs to go out the window and he needs to be moved on from. 2016 was a great year from him coming off the ACL when the common thinking is it takes 2 years to fully recover. Last year should've been a bigger year for him, in theory, but he had that weird injury at Atlanta. If it was the injury along with Hundley that slowed him, then keep him, but if last year had nothing to do with injury, he's got to go.

Montgomery is not a great natural catcher. He looked uncomfortable ala Janis on some deep balls earlier in his career. Those short quick hitters from the slot is where he belongs. He's strong and can get open quickly. If he doesn't work out from the slot, he'll be gone after this upcoming season. I hope he finds the magic this year as a slot guy.

If 88 is the answer at slot, there is no reason to keep RC18 for nearly 10 million. 88 is on his rookie deal for one more year and it'd be nice if could replace Randall at a significant cap savings. If he plays well, extend him sometime during the season for half of what Cobb was making.

Davante is not a #1 WR. I really worry about the offense putting those eggs in his basket but he's here for at least 3 more seasons. So, Davante, Jordy, and Montgomery with Cobb cut sounds to me like the 3 who are most likely to be here. Allison, Davis, Clark and Yancey (Yikes) are the 4 who'll be vying for the other roles. It's now or never for Davis. He rises or good bye. Allison is a good 5th WR. An okay 4th. who knows on Yancey or Clark? Odds aren't great on either being a huge contributor. Only one with any speed element is Davis and he's more of a build up type.

Just way too many questions at WR. As has been mentioned several times, outside help is a must. Speed is a must. Separation skills and great hands and route running a must.

My belief is Brian will not focus on the defense as much as many would assume and hope. I think they're going to count on Pettine and his aggressive mindset to solve a lot of the issues there.

WR is going to be the position of note to watch along with TE. RB might not be done with yet, either.

There have been way too many articles on the WR position but it's not like there's no reason to be talking about it. It's as critical as if not more than any other position group on this team.

I think you meant Courtland Sutton. Cam Sutton is a Steelers CB.

sonomaca's picture

The same discussion over and over. So boring.

nigrivasilayesrej's picture

Per PFF Jordy was ranked the 4th best WR, when playing in the slot, last year. Yeah, what a terrible idea. SMH. Step out of your little box, for once, & actually look at the data. Larry Fitz isn't a "twitchy/explosive" WR, but Arizona moved him to the slot as he got up in years, and it worked out very well for them. A slot WR that knows how to read DEF & get open against zone can make a big impact. Jordy IS the Packer's best slot option next year.
If you think DA isn't a #1 WR, you obviously didn't watch much football last year. DA is a top 10-15 WR in the NFL, which easily makes him a #1 in the league.
Who cares what direction Gute goes in the draft, as long as he picks the right players. Ted left more than enough holes to fill on this team.

John Kirk's picture

PFF said? Well, who can argue then. Did you watch Jordy last season?

The modern NFL, which is what we're in now, requires it's slot receiver to have certain attributes. Nelson doesn't belong there. He's old, injury prone, and would need to take big shots over the middle. Yes, let's put him there.

This is a good piece on slot receivers from old school thoughts from Vermeil to what is desired in the modern NFL...

http://www.post-gazette.com/sports/steelers/2014/09/21/Steelers-vs-Panth...

The allegation is I don't know football. Tell me the attributes you want from a slot receiver? There's a major difference between letting a guy play in the slot once in awhile and being a slot receiver. I know what is looked for in a slot receiver and that isn't Jordy. One of the requirements is to get blasted over the middle over and over. He's well past 30 and is oft injured. It's a good idea to put him in the slot full time and call him our slot receiver? "Fearless" is an attribute needed to play there full time. Google "NFL.com Super Bowl 45 box score"...watch the video that loads of the game, it will start immediately. Listen to Jordy Nelson on the sideline around the 3 minute mark into the highlights. He sure doesn't sound like a guy who belongs in the slot. I'd offer some real honest commentary of what I think of his words and our WR's coach but it's not needed or necessary.

Coldworld's picture

I agree, unfortunately, with the exception that I think Adams is a good outside starter. The problem is that he is not a fast receiver. We have no credible deep threat who will be under 34 in August—Davies is not likely to ever be a starter in my opinion.

Cobb and Adams should be good compliments still provided there is someone to stretch the D. That piece is missing.

John Kirk's picture

Davante is a very good WR2. He's no WR1.

The guy has never caught more than 75 balls nor has he eclipsed the 1000 yards marker in 4 years here, in our prolific offense.

What justified the money we gave him? It wasn't his numbers. That means he was paid on a projection. A projection where he was not counted on as THE WR1. You have to recall that he made up part of the slowest WR corps in the NFL last season. Cobb has the most speed of our former "Big 3". Separation and speed aren't Davante Adams strengths.

Here's some commentary from NFL.com's Matt Harmon based on Next Gen stats in Jan 2017: (this portion of the article was on WR2's and the amount of separation they created. Davante was the best, but hold your horses and get some context below)

With Nelson out of the picture in 2015 Adams had to take on the opposition's top corner with Randall Cobb being a strict slot receiver. He thrived in this year's rendition of the offense with an assignment that better fit his abilities.

It is important to note the wide gap between Adams' separation numbers when targeted out wide vs. the slot. His 2.46 number out wide is less than ideal and behind several other players on this list. (Remember, this is looking at him as a WR2, not a WR1 and he's behind several other WR2 outside) His slot targets boost his total. It's probably fair to say at this point in his career that we shouldn't expect Adams to ever be the premier separator. However, with his skills in contested situations, he has a counterpunch to mitigate that, especially with the NFL's best passer when throwing into tight windows behind center in Aaron Rodgers.

---Adams made hey in the slot? Hey, that's just like Jordy from PFF in 2018. Anyone advocate putting Adams in the slot? Again, big difference between playing from the slot and being a slot WR. The above Next Gen stats show that Davante is not only not a great separator as a WR1/outside WR2 he lacks speed and as Matt Harmon noted he did better when his assignment better fit his skills. WR2 not WR1.

carlos's picture

We can speculate all we want, but with a new OC and some restructuring of the offense, we may be able to utilize all our top receivers with some salary tweaking. Adams in the slot with a history of concussions could be risky. I would like to see every receiver line in the slot at times just to keep a defense guessing. For a speed guy I like John Brown who shouldn’t kill the cap. Running backs catching out of the backfield can give a defense fits also, as we all know. An obvious need is a field stretching TE with good hands, again as we all understand

dobber's picture

Who do the Saints have at TE? They've used their depth at RB in the passing game to account for the fact that their TEs are "meh", and they've done it very well. Last year's Falcons had very little of note at TE and did great with their RBs supporting the passing game. TEs are nice when you have them. When you don't, you need to make do somewhere else.

Richard Smith's picture

Jordy can play all over the field, including slot. That’s where aging boundary recievers go that run good routes, which is Nelson. Example is Larry Fitzgerald. 100% the same situation. Also, think about tight ends. Are they quick twitch? Probably not, but they line up in the slot quite often. Jordy is an excellent slot receiver.

nigrivasilayesrej's picture

Spot on. It's refreshing to read posts from others who know the game of football. Johnny Boy is obviously not one of them...

John Kirk's picture

Yes. Davante can too. Becoming strictly a slot guy who lines up there every down is different than lining up there on occasion and doing well.

The don't know football comments more aptly reflect you. You don't understand the difference from playing the slot on occasion to being moved to the slot as a slot WR (someone who lines up there every down). There's a whole layer that you've completely missed in this "debate".

sonomaca's picture

Here’s something new to discuss. Other wideouts currently on team:

Yancey
Pearson
Kumerow

Any potential here?

Bearmeat's picture

Not much.

Nick Perry's picture

Nope, not a bit. At least nothing to justify waiting even LONGER to address the need.

246toothpicks's picture

I'm excited to see what Yancy can do. I hope he impresses.

flackcatcher's picture

Janis is a free agent. Thought you folks would want to know. (JANIS !)

carlos's picture

Unfortunately I’m not excited about any backups on the 53.

sonomaca's picture

We know about Allison, Clark, and Davis already. Only intriguing one, IMHO, is Clark.

246toothpicks's picture

Agreed. Davis has never impressed me as a WR. Allison not so much either. I'd rather see Clark and Yancy. Along with drafting Anthony Miller.

Coldworld's picture

Clark is interesting but he does not project as a regular boundary receiver. He is a possession and red zone fade type.

Yancey might have some upside but can’t be sure so can’t rely on him coming through. Alison is a possession guy and Davis is a willowy speed type who I think would not hold up in regular duty for long even if he develops. Anyone else is a complete mystery.

Bure9620's picture

My mock from First-pick.com, I reccomend this site if you are a nerd like me and have some time on your hands. IMO, the best mock draft site.

I traded back to 16th in the first with Baltimore to pick up an extra 2nd rounder, also traded with Buffalo and Tennesse in the 4th and 5th rounds.

1) Marcus Davenport, EDGE, UTSA, love the upside
2) Auden Tate, WR Fla St., rare athleticism with that size
2) Carlton Davis, CB Auburn. Love this guy, 6-2, 200 with sub 4.4 speed
3) Armani Watts, FS Texas A&M, great value here
4) Dalton Shultz, TE Stanford, value here, day 2 talent
5) Bo Scarborough, RB Alabama
6) B.J Hill, DT NC St.
7) Austin Corbett, OL Nevada
7) Du'Vante Lumpkin, DT Oklahoma
7) Ray-Ray McCloud, WR Clemson

This was rated an A

sonomaca's picture

I think the trade back scenario is possible, although find partner is sometimes tough. If Lamar Jackson or Josh Allen still available at #14, becomes a possibility.

Also a possibility Packers move UP. Gute might want to make a splash. James, Nelson or Fitzpatrick.

246toothpicks's picture

Big fan of Austin Corbett here. But I don't think there is any way he is available in the 7th round. He is a 3rd to 4th rd. pick at the latest. He'd be a really good pick in that area. A versatile O lineman who has played all 5 positions on the line while at Nevada. A trait the Packers look for in their linemen.

stockholder's picture

A 2nd pick to move back two places? Not happening! So cross off Tate. Not enough OLs in your draft. Davenport is the better player for the edge. He's a player that has been as high as 8, and as low as 24. Possible. I believe a QB has to be in your draft.

Bure9620's picture

Yes I was contemplating Riley Ferguson from Memphis or Kurt Benkert from Viriginia, I really think they just sign a vet FA though.

sonomaca's picture

One thing to remember. Rodgers never trusts rookie receivers, which explains why the Pack never draft one in 1st. They will not take Ridley at #14. Might look at D.J. Moore in 2nd.

Cobb might draw some interest on trade market if team can restructure and extend him. FA receiver market is thin. Deal him for secondary or offensive line help, perhaps.

John Kirk's picture

We've talked about FA WR like Richardson, Moncrief, etc...

The potential draftees would be fun to get into. I've seen a little with Colin C in love with Anthony Miller. There's guys I like. Ridley...Sutton (curious to see his 40 time, and 3 cone)...Auden Tate (same thing...can't wait to see how he runs...big, big target)...Gallup...etc. There are tons of guys to get fired up about including Colin's Anthony Miller. I'd like to see two WR's drafted in Rounds 1-4.

sonomaca's picture

What typically happens is someone runs really fast at combine, and subsequently moves way up. It’s a mistake to fall into trap of drafting this guy high.

John Kirk's picture

Why? If you already really like a player and he happens to test really well at the combine that's more reason to draft him as opposed to really liking a guy and having him test poorly with a poor 40 time.

I agree you don't just draft a guy because he runs really fast but speed is important. Of course, running in shorts vs. with pads vs. competition is different. Need NextGen stats on some of these guys.

One player I was just reading up on that would be a huge risk but incredible upside is Antonio Callaway from Florida. He could be like a Tyreek Hill. A guy who has a checkered past but has undeniable talent who turned it around. 1st round talent. You watch his highlight reel and he's destroying guys in the SEC like Minkah Fitzpatrick. Someone is going to take him thinking they've got a Tyreek Hill scenario unfolding. Where do you take a guy like this? Hill went 5th round. I'd burn a 5th round comp pick on a guy like him even with all of his issues. He didn't punch a pregnant woman. Typical drug stuff...and a felony credit card fraud charge. Look into that guy. Quick twitch. Electric. We need that kind of player on the field.

Colin_C's picture

Agreed. FA's fun and all, but I find the draft much more fascinating, and could probably talk about it all day. Maybe the writers can do some player profiles soon.
Haha, you got that right. When I watch him, I see Antonio Brown 2.0 out there :-)

John Kirk's picture

I had to stop for a second when you dropped the AB reference. That's what some feel Antonio Callaway is. I love the draft, too. It's my favorite event in sports. I don't follow it quite as closely as I used to but I'm always into it somewhat.

Let's get Miller and Callaway and get Antonio Brown 2.0 and 3.0. That'd be good. :)

Colin_C's picture

That works for me! I've had a harder time finding tape on Callaway, so I don't know him as well as some other prospects. But from everything I've heard, he'd be in 1st-2nd consideration if not for some truly stupid off the field moves. I did hear that the Florida coaching staff likes him, but just doesn't trust him. That hopefully just means he's immature, but still coachable and can turn things around.

Angela22's picture

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Bure9620's picture

Hello Russian Bot

Kevin Ven's picture

At this point I would extend Jordy to lower the cap hit and move him to slot. Trade Cobb for a 2nd or 3rd (not sure what teams would be willing to give up), move Ty back to WR (between Williams and Jones we should be good there), and try to renegotiate Bulaga with incentives for a per game bonus (since he is hurt a LOT). That way we go after like a Trey Burton for TE, brown or moncrief for WRs, and look to add a CB to add to the group. Then we can focus on Edge, OL, Cb, and depth in draft. With how manyw picks we have we can move a bunch seeing as we don’t have enough roster spots for everyone.

worztik's picture

I am going to attempt to temper my thoughts and feelings until after the combine. It seems my comments get me in trouble at times and this time of the year, looking at what TT did to OUR team, makes me even more aggressive than I normally am... and more negative, as well!!! I was feeling bad and down and sad yesterday... so, instead of writing negative comments and being generally unpleasant... I went out and bought a new (‘17) Accord Sport!!! Now I have a new toy and my outlook will be great until it’s repossessed!!!!!! Just sayin’... try it, you’ll like it!!!!!!!

DD's picture

I agree with the article with restructuring Cobb and Nelson. But missed point is to also restructure Matthews and Baluga for sure too. This would free up big money for a possible FA. Failure to restucture means trade time, if any value possible, or release.

Royalty Free GM's picture

We pay way too much money to our mediocre WR and OLB players.

Matthews and Perry cap hits; both top 15 in the league!? #11 and #13. Not worth the money.
And as we know our WR corps is the most expensive in the whole league...

246toothpicks's picture

I think they should sign Paul Richardson in FA. Draft Anthony Miller, Memphis in the 3rd round if available. Bring back Jordy at a reduced salary. I think Cobb is let go. I think that would be a good start at re-stocking the WR position. I really like Miller. I think that kid is really going to be good. jmo.

Coldworld's picture

Keeping Nelson and letting a 29 year old leave is not a logical start to restructuring. Rather it risks deepening the need and upheaval over the next couple of years. The only reason we don’t all say that is because Nelson is, well, Nelson. It’s emotional not rational. If Cobb leaves, we may have no choice, but it’s not the option with the highest probability of improvement.

DD's picture

You're not correct. Offer restructure first for both at about 7 million each. They can be productive if MM used them in better schemes and route patterns! If they refuse then release of trade them. Also, money could be freed up big time with Matthews and Baluga. We still need that veteran leadership and connection. So make some offers to keep them, then decide.

sheppercheeser's picture

I wonder if AR were to settle for a measly $20-25M instead of $30-35M, if they could use the savings to keep both Nelson and Cobb, ala what Tom Brady did. He offered to agree to a lower salary if they used the savings to keep/acquire quality players.

dobber's picture

My initial thought is that ARod settling for less money doesn't make Nelson/Cobb better players or their contracts more palatable. Hard decisions need to be made there.

worztik's picture

YUP!!!

sonomaca's picture

Could let Rodgers play out his deal, then tag him twice. That would be 4 years. He’d be 39.

Meanwhile, I’d trade back from #14 in exchange for 2020 first rounder. I’d try to get three 2020 first rounders in order to land franchise QB that year (or 2021).

Oppy's picture

Am I the only guy who just doesn't think we have unsolvable problems or paper-thin depth at WR?

Yeah, Jordy/Cobb contracts need sorting. Other than that, whatever. I'm just not concerned.

I think we're fine at WR so long as we have a QB that gives them a chance.

You guys can all analyze that last statement how you want. This team isn't going to fall apart next season because of some supposed issue at WR.

Just my take.

Colin_C's picture

Agreed. Rodgers makes everyone better, especially at the WR position. It's just exciting to think what the offense could like like with an even better WR corps this year than last.

Oppy's picture

I actually think Rodgers limits the production of a number of WRs at his disposal as opposed to making them better.

Generally speaking, I'm a huge proponent of Rodgers-over-Favre, but one of the things I have been vocal about in the past is saying Aaron could learn a great deal from Favre in terms of giving ALL his WRs opportunities to make plays.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I am not really concerned about my car insurance rates. It is a good company, but lately the only time my captive agent contacts me is to send a letter telling me that my rates are increasing. There are other insurance companies that would give me better coverage for less money, but I just don't care to improve my position because there is a chance that the new insurer won't provide good service.

I, too, think we can get by with Nelson, Cobb and Adams, but I don't want to.

John Kirk's picture

I absolutely love these kind of replies. Painting a real life scenario that most of us deal with is fantastic.

Keep posting like this.

It's interesting to see that Adams contract. My belief is had Nelson been younger and as productive as he was in 2016, and Cobb was living up to his contract, there is no way we give Davante that contract. This was yet another scenario where we were backed into a corner and felt forced to pay due to the situation that we'd have nothing, so to have something pretty good we overpaid.

I never felt Greg Jennings was a true WR1 and I felt he was a much better WR than Davante.

Just a quick comp of Adams to Jennings:

Jennings after 4 seasons: 3957 yards 246 rec 28 TDs 16.0 AVG
Davante after 4 seasons: 2811 yards 237 rec 26 TDs 11.9 AVG

The difference in yards and avg is striking. Greg had over 1100 more yards in 4 seasons...Adams hasn't even hit 1000 yards in a season. Over 4 yards difference in average is unbelievable.

Finwiz's picture

The numbers tell it all.
Jennings was a far better receiver than Devonte.

John Kirk's picture

Even without the numbers, the old eyeball test comes into play. I've never thought of Davante Adams as special in any sense. The most excited I've ever been about him was the fake spike play at Miami a few years back. That was a big time heady play he made there.

Greg Jennings was better and I never felt Greg was a WR1 type. Yet, when you take the eyeball test into account and compare numbers there is no justification for the contract Adams just received. In 3 years, Adams will cost 16.6 million against our cap. Is he worth that? No. Not even close. It's possible that Rogers and Adams will cost a combined 50 million, together, in 3 seasons.

There has to be a better solution than Davante as a WR1 but I'm afraid they've paid their way into him being our WR1 where nobody here knows if he can actually perform even adequately in that role. My opinion is he won't. It'll be like paying Clay and Nick 20+ million and still having it be a huge need. We'll be paying all this money to Adams and the other two and WR will still be a huge need for us. I don't know how things ever got to the point it has with WR and several other position groups.

Oppy's picture

Re: Devante Adams, does anyone know if he can perform as a #1 WR

Uh, check the TDs, dude.

John Kirk's picture

I did. I posted Greg Jennings stats in his first 4 seasons vs. Davante's first 4 seasons. Greg had more. Greg was a better WR not because of the TD differential, he was just a better player.

Randall Cobb had 12 TD's a few seasons ago. Is he a #1? Is he better than Davante because Davante had 10 last season? We gave Cobb the big money after a 12 TD season just like Adams had last season.

In 2012 James Jones had 14 TD's... more than Adams has ever had in a single season. Was James Jones a WR1?

Oppy's picture

No wide receiver in the NFL has more regular season TD's than Davante Adams over the last two seasons.

So... You know.... I think that suggests he is capable of being the #1 WR for the Packers.... because... Ummmm... He kinda already is.

I'm really not interested in comparing him to James Jones in 2012 or Greg Jennings. I was quite specific about the comment I was referring to. Your reading comprehension sucks.

John Kirk's picture

You asked me to check the TDs. I already had.

If your view is based on TDs making a WR1 then you should be able to answer the simple questions I posed. You know the answers.

Julio has 9 TDs in the last two seasons. Davante has 22. Who would you rather have? Is Julio not a WR1 because of his 9 TDs in two seasons? Davante and Julio aren't remotely comparable. TDs mean diddly.

Oppy's picture

Reynoldo,

I was referencing our depth at WR specifically.

I think even if we lose either Jordy or Cobb (and I do believe either of them needs to have their $$$ dropped or creatively moved around), we have young WRs who will function just fine and fill in the void. I actually think we might get more mileage out of some of the young guys, to be completely honest.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Sorry, I was snarky. I just think the urgency needs to increase a lot in GB. When I see a post that sounds even arguably complacent, my adrenaline flows a bit.

Handsback's picture

I think they missed the point......yes the WRs could be better, but Hundley makes it a questionable issue. TEs are an issue with lack of quality and lack of numbers.

stockholder's picture

Well chris you said the obvious again to pour gasoline on a fire. Problem on the Horizon: Adams Contract! You know he isn't fast enough to play Nelsons position. You need a Alshon Jefferies! And where is our Burton,Ertz etc. ? You want Monty to be Cobb. And Monty is slower! Also, he can't return punts. And don't tell me you love Davis either. Yes they have a problem. But it's not the contracts. They'll be off the books next year. Your afraid for Adams and A-Rod. You want better Depth. And you won't get it taking a TE in the second rd., or a DE in the first. Were after Game Changers. And How this defense plays won't be about the starters. It's all about the Depth. And if Nelson and Cobb stay they will help this team more than anyone we could get. I said they were a year late in the decisions. If they make the wrong moves it gets MM fired! I see Hundley as a problem first. Next draft Wrs. But lets make sure they have the speed to replace what we have. And Finally get the TE you need in Fa. You have to many positions to fill first, before the trashing of the the Wrs.

4thand1's picture

Remember Greg Jennings? What a great WR he was............oh wait, AR was throwing him the ball. WR is the least of our worries unless Hundley is the QB. We have a running game, now get a TE.

stockholder's picture

Jenkins just turned down 2 years @ 8 mil. from jets. The Te market just grew. $$$

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Jennings was a really good WR. I'd be delighted if Davante equals Jennings' career, or has a decent overall career with even a single year as good as Jennings' 2008, 2009, or 2010 seasons.

Jennings put up 804 yards with Christian Ponder tossing the ball to him in 2013, while Adams put up 885 with AR throwing the ball to him for 5 games (57 yards per game), and Hundley for 9 games (67 yards per game). Well for Davante that he had BH throwing to him rather than that crappy AR. Hard to say, but Ponder probably was almost as bad as BH.

4thand1's picture

My point is Jennings turned into another WR diva. That's the one thing we don't have in GB right now and don't need one. After GB Jennings career all but ended, while Jordy's and Cobb's kept rolling. If TT would have gotten a good TE our WR's would have been even better.

David Aures's picture

IMO. Davante Adams is a number 1 WR. He has done nothing but improve every year. You dont need 4.1 speedster to be a # 1 WR. Now if we get a deep threat #2 WR(Richardson) with great speed and monty or jordy in slot. Our receiving core would be ideal. Also add a TE like Burton. If Rodgers and aaron jones stays healthy and we get are offensive line figured out we will be one tough offense to stop. Then with our high draft picks we can worry about defense.

David Aures's picture

IMO. Davante Adams is a number 1 WR. He has done nothing but improve every year. You dont need 4.1 speedster to be a # 1 WR. Now if we get a deep threat #2 WR(Richardson) with great speed and monty or jordy in slot. Our receiving core would be ideal. Also add a TE like Burton. If Rodgers and aaron jones stays healthy and we get are offensive line figured out we will be one tough offense to stop. Then with our high draft picks we can worry about defense.

Bure9620's picture

The is a very deep draft in the 2-5 rounds for skill positions, there will plenty of really good WR, CB and RB here with terrific value. It would not upset me to see an OT taken in round one if Orlando Brown or Connor Williams fall to the Packers, especially with the uncertainty of Bulaga and Spriggs being injured and not developing. Davenport and Arden Key seem like great prospects with a lot of boom bust potential. It would be nice to see Derwin James fall to us also.

mrtundra's picture

The Packers need a solid WR, or two, in this draft or in FA. I don't think they will go after Jarvis Landry in FA, There will be several rookies to choose from. Courtland Sutton and Calvin Ridley are legitimate First Rounders. Deon Cain, Dante Pettis, Antonio Callaway, DJ Chark, James Washington, Michael Gallup are all available, as well. A guy that is turning heads is DJ Moore from Maryland. He could be available to the Packers in the second round.
https://youtu.be/nC_I-ODggSQ

Spock's picture

I just feel there is too much fan-fueled "we have too much money tied up in our receivers". As has been said by others (RC and me for example) the total cap is really more important for the club. So what if Cobb and Jordy are overpaid for THIS YEAR in comparison to other teams?! We have RB's on rookie contracts, Monty is still being paid peanuts, etc. I wouldn't cut Cobb because when he becomes a free agent odds are we will get a high comp pick if he leaves and I personally don't think he's lost as much as many people here seem to think, and AR looks for him during the "scramble drill" quite often. He's got some of the best hands on the team. I think we're all focusing too much on the money and not looking at the bigger picture here. Paying a FA similar money and hoping for a seamless connection with AR seems to be all hope and no reality IMHO. I agree with many here that we need to start getting CHTV articles on other positions. These WR articles are already stale this early in the off season! I don't think anyone at this point is going to change their opinion on the WR's and we've pretty much heard everyone's two or three times now. Let's move on, please. I don't follow college football so most of the draft WR's are new to me. How about discussing some of those more in depth? We should be seeing some renegotiated contracts soon and much of this current discussion will be moot. Just my two cents. Go, Pack, Go!

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I gave you a thumbs up because I agree with the bulk of your comment. I do tend to use a completely subjective analysis: surplus value of each player. I agree that having a couple of WRs with net negative value isn't the end of the world for a year; I agree that we should look at the cap as a whole. Problem is that Cobb with a salary of $9.4M in 2017 would had a net negative value of about -$2 or -$3M in 2017 even if AR hadn't gotten hurt and figures to have a net negative value of -$3M in 2018 again. Jordy with a salary of $9.25M in 2017 probably would have had a small net negative had AR stayed healthy, or perhaps been just worth his pay.

I see surplus value from AR and Bakh, with less expected surplus in 2018 than in 2017 as their contracts increase. I see surplus from Williams and Jones, and hope for some from Monty. Probably get some surplus from RG, probably from McCray as a low end starter on a rookie deal. I expect Linsley, Taylor and Davis (for STs) to play = to their contracts. Negatives from Bulaga, Cobb, Nelson, Kendricks, Rip and Allison, and likely Spriggs due to injury. Probably a modest to good-sized negative from Davante, just because his effective cap hit for 2018 is $14.1M. 10 more guys mostly on rookie deals who don't figure to do much, but due to low pay won't be a big drain, and one or two might surprise.

On D, Clark, Martinez, King, Randall, and Lowry figure to provide surplus value, but only Clark's is really large, but we can hope to get significant surpluses from the rest of them. Daniels and Perry (if they stay healthy), Ryan (as a rotational contributor) and Marwin Evans (for STs) play = to their cost or provide a small surplus. CM3 if he stays healthy figures to have a noticeable net negative value, and if he misses games due to injury or plays hurt, a large net negative. If Perry gets hurt yet again, he's a net negative as well. No idea what to expect from Dix or Josh Jones. Fackrell, Brice and Rollins figure to be net negatives though Fackrell and Brice have ST value. I have hopes for Evans, Whitehead, Biegel, M. Adams, Gilbert and Odoms, but probably a small overall positive from this group.

Spock's picture

TGR,
I think I followed most of that. I just don't have the same way of looking at the numbers as you do. Always fascinates me when you explain how you view the players vs. contracts stuff. Thanks for the breakdown.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Thanks, Spock. Point that I see I never got to is that there aren't enough guys producing surplus value. On Offense, it is mostly AR and Bakh, plus the RBs. On D last year, probably just Clark and Burnett with big surpluses, and Martinez, Lowry with nice surpluses. For context:

Offense: $85.5M in cap space*, (50% of cap), 6th in NFL.
Offense: $104M by AAV, (57%), 3rd in NFL.
Offense: $92.5M by cash (52%), 5th in NFL.

Defense: $64.2M in cap space, (38%), 20th in the NFL.
Defense: $69M (38%) by AAV, 22nd in NFL.
Defense: $67.5M (38%) by cash, 23rd in NFL.

Specialists: $5.38, 3.18% by Cap number. No rank avail.
Specialists: $6.56M, 3.61% by AAV
Specialists: $4.13M (2.3%) by cash.

Dead: $11M (7.13% of cap) [That's super high for GB.]

RESULTS:
Offense: 21st/26 pts/yards (No AR = huge negative value)
Defense: 26th/22nd pts/yards (Get what you pay for.)

In a hard-capped league, the point is to get MORE than you paid for.

stormin's picture

I find this site to be entertaining , but you are all full of shit tossing comments around for your own amusement !

dobber's picture

Then, please, enlighten us...

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Nah, don't enlighten us, Stormin, just lurk if you like.

Duneslick's picture

Packer Greg says we really won't know much about the receivers until after the combine. He sees Davonte Adams as a possession receiver not a deep threat. Maybe be should label receivers based on the need to be double teamed or have a safety over the top as the 1wr. We don't have that so some of the db's can roam the secondary on pass plays. We need more speed to stretch the field and force the defense to have saftey's over the top so we can then open up areas underneath.

John Kirk's picture

I agree with the part about force fed targets. We don't have a singular talent set apart from the rest and haven't in many many years. We're a WR by committee approach. If Aaron had an OBJ or Julio you can bet things would be very different.

Davante was paid as a WR1, though, and that's my issue with him. He's a fine WR2, but you don't pay your #2 that kind of money especially when there is no #1 there to begin with. He's the 4th highest paid WR in the game. I forget who it was but he argued that it's like QB and Aaron Rodgers. Much lesser QB's were getting paid more than him because they were later to sign. I understand that but those orgs paid those guys because they felt they were franchise QB's or they wouldn't have paid it out. Davante is not a "franchise" WR. He's a nice player but not a star who keeps DC's concerned about how they're going to defend his greatness.

Oh, and I agree he won't have a repeat performance. Not because he spreads the ball around but because Adams will be seeing CB1's quite often and Aaron won't be able to get it to him. He wasn't even a top separator as a WR2 on the outside, but he's paid like a WR1, now?

Compare a 31 year old Jordy coming off ACL surgery to 3rd year Davante.

Nelson racked up 1257 yards on 95 receptions and 14 TD's with a 13.0 AVG
Adams racked up 997 yards on 75 receptions and 12 TD's with a 13.3 AVG

Two of the worst concussions the game has ever seen were also part of his season. How many more of those can he take? 1 or none?

Finwiz's picture

One more KO, and he'll be done, which was my fear with signing him to the long contract. I'd say it's about 60-70% he has another concussion, the only question is when, and how severe.

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