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Packers Re-Sign Finley

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Packers Re-Sign Finley

From Pro Football Talk:

Per league source, Packers agree to terms on two-year contract with TE Jermichael Finley. Details coming at PFT.

$5.75 million in '12 and $8.25 million in '13 for Finley.
Obviously, this is a compromise by both sides. Finley wants to prove he is worth a Vernon Davis-type contract with a big hunk of guaranteed money up front, and the Packers get an important part of their offense for two more years while not breaking the bank and seeing if they can trust a maturing young player. Finley's age makes the deal especially intriguing from his end as he'll still only be 26 the next time he's ready to hit free agency.
The Packers did a similar deal with Greg Jennings when they signed him for three years two offseasons ago.
Attention will now no doubt turn to the Packers' Franchise Tag and the possibility of placing it on quarterback Matt Flynn with a look to trade him for a premium draft pick.
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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (52) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Mojo's picture

Good news if you ask me. Now they have a little more flexibility. Possibly tag Flynn?

Kparis99's picture

Sorry if I don't understand the franchise tag. But if they franchise Flynn for 14 mil, is that cap space lost for the year even if they trade him. If so, then wouldn't that also mean no Wells, or anyone else for that matter?

Evan's picture

No. The money comes off the books once he's traded. But since the number is so high, there's no way they'll tag him without a deal already in place.

Kparis99's picture

That's good, I was reading some things on twitter that made me believe they would be stuck with that cap hit for the year, even if he was traded. Then I'm all for it. Go wheel and deal Ted!

PackersRS's picture

Tag Wells.

CSS's picture

They average the entire offensive line, not just centers. I believe that would be a one-year cap hit of about $9 million or more since you're averaging tackle and guard money, too.

I don't have a solution, but that's a big hit.

Jeremy's picture

Thank God! Now sign Wells please...

ebongreen's picture

Smart compromise by both sides. Finley gets paid and the Packers get time to see if he's really as good (and as irreplaceable) as he thinks he can be.

Nononsense's picture

Very nice work TT and Co. that was a must. 7.5 is a little steep but not over the top. Couldn't just let Finley get away and they have more time to determine his worth long term.

Things just got a bit more interesting in Packerland. Miami, we will give you Matt Flynn and AJ Hawk for Cameron Wake straight up. :-)

mark's picture

7.5 for Big Fin in his very prime is an absolute heist!

Bearmeat's picture

Dude - Cameron Wake!!!!

That. Would. Be. Awesome.

Packers Fan in Atlanta's picture

Wake is 30. Doubtful.

Maek's picture

Cliff Avril from the Lions is 26 perhaps the packers make a play at him and snatch him from Detriot.

cole's picture

That would be a dream come true. They are switching to a 4-3...

maxginsberg's picture

Is there anyone else you would want running your franchise than Ted Thompson? The man is good at what he does.

I could be completely wrong (I usually am when it comes to guessing what Thompson will do), but I am starting to think that the Packers won't be using their Franchise Tag this year.

Evan's picture

With the Browns having 2 first round picks, they're the favorites to trade up to take Robert Griffin III, which would leave the Dolphins and Redskins screwed out of the top QB prospects in the draft.

If I were a betting man, I'd place some money on the Packers tagging and trading Flynn to the Dolphins.

CSS's picture

I wouldn't bet on it. Mike Sherman has really talked up Ryan Tannehill, his former QB and likely 1st round pick coming out of Texas A&M this year. The kid has a lot of talent and Sherman as the Dolphins offensive coordinator will have some influence in the decision making process.

The Dolphins are a few years away, so don't be surprised if they draft and develop with less cap ramification than tagging and paying for Flynn while they wouldn't even complete with him the 1st year or two.

PackersRS's picture

Maybe it's the games I saw, but Tannenhil is no franchise QB. Neither is Cousins for that matter.

CSS's picture

Right now, I agree. But Tannehill has better upside than either Gabbert or Ponder and I don't think it's close. Teams reached for them, who knows what influence Sherman will have?

CSS's picture

RS, Here's an interesting breakdown of his pocket presence:

http://mattwaldmanrsp.com/2012/02/11/managing-the-pocket-part-ii-texas-a...

Interesting.

Evan's picture

I'd argue that the QB the head coach personally coached for the last 4 years trumps the QB the OC coached in college.

Seahawks are another possibility, with the Schneider connection.

MarkinMadison's picture

The Browns could also afford to trade away one of those first rounders for Flynn. Holmgren had a lot of success in Seattle when the Seahawks traded for Hasselbeck. The Browns have gambled twice on high pick quarterbacks in the draft and are 0-2. Maybe they will think it is time to try a different approach. Flynn is not guaranteed, but at least you have two good NFL games out of him in two years. That's better tape than Luck has to show.

jeremy's picture

Unless it's to get trade value back when a player goes elsewhere, I think franchising a player is kind of like an admission by the GM that they haven't done their job as well as they could have.

cow42's picture

If you're implying that TT has not "done his job" as it pertains to Flynn, I strongly disagree.

The Packers knew full well what the situation was heading into this year. They understood that Flynn would want a chance to be a starter somewhere else when his contract was up (so he wouldn't sign an extension here). They also knew that to hold onto him (and not trade him) for the season would mean they would most likely lose him to free agency without compensation (aside from the comp. pick).

They took all that info and decided that, with the team they had, it was still in their best interest to keep Flynn as their backup in case Rodgers went down. They felt they could win with (and possibly contend with) Flynn as their QB. Judging by how he played - I'd say they were right.

If they can tag and trade him - great.
If they can't - hey, it is what it is. Picking a guy in R7 having him start a total of 2 games in 3 years. getting a 3rd round comp. pick when he leaves... not the worst scenario in the world.

In fact - it would be AWESOME if they could do the same with every one of their 7th round picks.

GBPFL's picture

+1 on this comment, I totally agree. Go Uncle Ted Go !!!!!!

jeremy's picture

I'm not implying that at all. I'm giving TT credit for how he handled the Corey Williams situation, and also his lack of needing tags in general and subsequently overpaying.

MarkinMadison's picture

It's a great deal. If Finley disappoints then the Packers can cut bait. In the mean time they can tag and trade Flynn (maybe, if they clear enough cap space, which they can, probably). I would not hold my breath about Wells being back.

brando's picture

nice. what was it, last week, stories were coming out saying they hadn't even talked?

Jay's picture

Can someone explain this to me: Silverstein reported here (http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/sports/138497134.html) that we're 6.7 mil under the cap.

Yet here:(http://www.jsonline.com/sports/packers/finleyearly22212-140081103.html ) he claims that by doing nothing we have about 10 mil under, before we talk about cutting people. Did I miss something here?

Bearmeat's picture

Cap figures change really quickly before the new league year starts. Teams are cutting players or resigning them or restructuring deals daily right now in order to be in the best possible financial shape before March hits.

Kevin Seifert said something to this effect on the ESPN NFCN blog last week. It's a good read - look it up.

pkrNboro's picture

I'm sorta surprised... seems like both sides were reasonable. Glad that's in the past.

Now on to the Center position.

Two years ago, in preseason, I saw a guy "whiff" on his first play at LT when playing KC, BUT he went on to have a pretty good game -- that guy was Marshall Newhouse.

Last year I saw a guy in preseason that held his own when the rest of the rookie line was collapsing -- that guy was Sampson Genus.

Genus is one inch shorter than Wells (the width of my thumb -- big deal!), but he outweighs him by 20 pounds. Both guys have shorter than average arm length, but that didn't keep Wells from playing well for years. Genus has played C since peewee, and has won weightlifting awards. He's also smart.

I really think this guy is getting the short shrift. I thought he was a fireplug. Our center may already be on the team! More picks and bucks for defense, IMO.

With an offseason, this guy might develop !

MarkinMadison's picture

+1

jack in jersey city's picture

this is GREAT news! now let's hope we get something in return for flynn

JJB's picture

I can see Wells leaving and Peter Konz drafted to replace him. If Knoz makes it to 28th pick.

jeremy's picture

A fist round interior Olineman is not really TT's style.

IowaPackFan's picture

I will assume this is sarcasm.

Evan's picture

"Interior"

jeremy's picture

You should practice reading and understanding a comment before jumping to conclusions.

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

Don't see it at 28.

cow42's picture

I don't care if Konz ends up being a hall of famer. I HATE the idea of having to use an early round pick on a center. There are just too many holes to fill on the defense.

If you can sign Wells for a reasonable price - great.

If you think EDS or Genus can do the job - I trust you (though I have my doubts).

If you are going to go out and sign one of the many FA centers - cool (though I'd be SHOCKED).

But PLEASE don't put the team in a situation where they have to use an early pick on this position.

Evan's picture

Totally agree (for once ;) )

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

Wow, seems like a very palatable number Ted got him for. This is good.

GBP 4 LIFE

CSS's picture

Finley will continue to drag a linebacker and safety over the top. Jennings will get the #1 corner and Nelson will get more than just the dime this year.

Randall Cobb is going to be a fantasy steal in fantasy football next year. There will be a lot of running room in the middle third next year. His yards per catch will be crazy even if he doesn't get as many targets as the above receivers.

cow42's picture

As you all probably know - I am not a Finley fan. It has nothing to do with how he carries himself. I could care less if guys tweet and dance. I just don't think he's that good. It's been three years. He's a tease.

He has undeniable physical gifts... but with some players there's always "something" every year. I just see Finley as one of those players.

That being said, I think this is a great signing by the Packers. The price is fair. If Finley performs at a high level during year 1 of his contract he'll get a new contract before year 2 even kicks in.

Also - I have been one who thought there was zero chance of tagging and trading Flynn. The timing of this Finley signing changes my opinion on that. There is no reason why the team and Finley had to come to an agreement so early (before FA even starts). There might be a glimmer of a chance that the Packers are getting everything else around Flynn "lined up" thus giving themselves options.

I still think chances are slim... but I do think there's a chance.

As for Wells - they'll do with him what they did with Clifton. The Packers aren't going to bid against themselves. They'll let Wells shop himself around. The market will determine his value. That's when the Packers will decide if his price is right.

Church42's picture

Agree with pretty much everything, especially on Wells and the Packers not bidding against themselves...they did the same last year with James Jones last year as well.

That said, I still don't want JJ on the roster, nor JMike. At least the $ and years are manageable on JMike's contract. JJ I think they could cut, along with DD & Hawk. JJ and DD are essentially interchangeable 4th/5th WRs and I think Gurley or Borel could fill these roles for a lower price. That said, they'll keep JJ anyway, but I think he'll be the 5th WR by the end of the year, surpassed by Borel or Gurley.

CSS's picture

Couldn't disagree with you more on Driver and Jones being interchangeable. Jones is the only receiver on the roster you can't press at the line of scrimmage (he's too physical) and he still commands a nickle corner in coverage. Driver's game was never physical to begin with and he can't break the line of scrimmage when pressed. Driver can be covered now with a linebacker. You can't cover Jones with a linebacker or safety. Driver's only saving grace at this point: he's a savvy veteran that understand zones and knows where to settle. That's it.

Jones is a very good #3 on any team and his production would be higher with more targets. His contract is cheap, he's a physical specimen and he knows the system. You need 5 receivers in this offense. Neither Jones is far more physical than Borel and faster than Gurley, neither have taken a meaningful professional snap.

pkrNboro's picture

I agree.

Just don't see the value of JJ at $3 mil / year. Does he play ST? I don't recall anything memorable.

I question his effort because I've never seen him lay-out for a ball, or dive to the ground to make a catch. This may be unfair; he simply may not be athletic enough to do so. But it seems like the passes have to be perfect for him.

A team can only have so many pass catchers; I wonder if Finley's signing spells the end for DD. With Cobb coming on, a lower-tier WR has to play ST. Also, the SB disguised a problem with Driver: he's slower to heal, at his age. He was in a boot for weeks after the game.

-----

During a chat with Kareem, I asked about the cap hit with Hawk -- it would be $6.55 mil in 2012.

God, I hate that guy:
(1) tackles high, runners churn extra yards
(2) takes on oLinemen, instead of shedding them
(3) plays too far off LOS, doesn't attack gap quickly
(4) no lateral movement in coverage
(5) blitzes into dLineman's back

I could live with DJ Smith.

BrianD's picture

I'll never forget James Jones' TD against Philly in last year's playoffs. It's one of the most memorable catches in recent history IMO (it's the first TD catch in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JcAe1KIcA3c).

If you cut Hawk you're left with an unknown in Smith. Last year Smith had one each of the best and worst games at MLB for the Packers and possibly for the entire NFL. You don't know what you're getting with Smith yet and we could be left with a Jenkins -> Neal-like transition that stings just a little less.

As far as the Finley contract is concerned, I'm glad he listened to reason and decided to play for a championship contender in his prime while getting well paid. It's a win-win deal.

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

Seattle sports radio is talking -as i type this- about how this affects their chances to land Flynn... Lots of people out here want him.

GBP 4 LIFE

NoWayJose's picture

One thing that I haven't heard anyone mention yet -- I think this is a very SNEAKY signing by TT.

The reason? TT now gets two years to preview the THREE prospects he has at TE as potential Finley replacements - Quarless, Williams, and Taylor.

If Finley ends up being an all-pro? Fine, re-sign him.

If he remains about the same (pretty good, not great), but the younger guys are blossoming? Let someone else pay that top-of-the-market price tag.

packsmack25's picture

Jose, you read my mind.

RedLine's picture

Interesting that Finley's agent made the conceding proposal to really move the negotiation. That says something about Finley, too. I don't see a concession happening with Wells, but maybe McGinn's take influenced me too much. I see TT letting Wells hit the market and then negotiate with him. No way TT tags Flynn.

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