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Report: Packers Woking On New Deal With Burnett

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Report: Packers Woking On New Deal With Burnett

This makes sense.

From Jason LaCanfora:

Packers fans, and no doubt the Packers themselves, have been waiting for Burnett to blossom into a top-flight safety for awhile now. While he has yet to reach the level of play exhibited by Nick Collins, who Burnett will unfortunately always be compared to, he is coming off a solid 2012 campaign that saw him take every defensive snap.

The Packers are doing what they always do in identifying a young, core guy they can build around, most likely a bit under market value, prior to his reaching free agency - which Burnett is scheduled to do next summer.

Burnett is set to count $1.5 million against the Packers' 2013 salary cap.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (84) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Chris's picture

yesssss! was hoping he'd be the next extended

jmac34's picture

This will hopefully end up being a jordy nelso type deal where the packers lock him up long term and then he breaks out

RC Packer Fan's picture

That is exactly what my thinking/hope is.

THEMichaelRose's picture

I'm happy they're doing this.
Hopefully get him at a discount to what he would have made next offseason.

Bearmeat's picture

Sam Shields and BJ Raji just got more motivated.

cow42's picture

Other than where they were drafted, how is Burnett any different than Raji?

Both guys who play well once in awhile but disappear for long stretches.

Judging by his play to this point, I think I would have preferred that the Packers had waited out the year... I don't think Burnett's going to improve so much that he's going to price himself off the team.

Hopefully this gamble pays off and the Packer's don't get locked into a contract that exceeds Burnett's actual contributions on the field.

PackersRS's picture

Burnett, at the same time in their careers, has played better than what Collins did. The numbers back this up.

cow42's picture

I just hope this gamble doesn't end up locking the Packers into a contract that exceeds Burnett's actual play (see Finley, Hawk, Kuhn, Crosby, T. Williams, B. Jones).

Jamie's picture

STFU trolltard

cow42's picture

aren't you the winner who suggested i kill myself?


jeremy's picture

Safeties don't get big contracts so the risk is a lot lower than DL or CB.

RC Packer Fan's picture

I agree with you Cow. I like them locking him up before he would breakout. But what if he never does break out...
He has been solid and above average. But he hasn't been dynamic. My hope is this turns out to be something similar to Jordy Nelson's deal. lock him up before he has a big time year.

cow42's picture

Burnett is better than Collins, huh?

Chris's picture

He is saying that at this point in their respective careers he would be yes. Collins took a few years to blossom into the beast he was, he is implying that Burnett is on a similar trajectory. I would already take Mo over atleast two-thirds of the leagues safeties at this point and he is still young. smart move

Idiot Fan's picture

Come on Cow, you can read better than that...

JakeK's picture

What fans love to disregard when comparing Collins & Burnett is their flat out ability to run. ... NC ran a 4.36 in the 40 at the NFL Combine... Burnett ran a 4.51 at his Pro-Day. ... That's a huge difference. It's also why NC could cheat in coverage & still recover. ... I doubt Burnett's going to get any faster... But he can tackle.

PackerBacker's picture

Righhhhhht, their 40 times 4 years ago. We'll just base everything for their career arc on that stat. We can just ignore all the rest of the actual stats from how they play. Good call.

JakeK's picture

Don't be a fool. How fast an athlete can run determines a good portion of his success in any sport. NC had everything including speed. ... Burnett doesn't.

BTW ...Only uninformed fans thought it took 3 or 4 years for NC to evolve into a Pro-Bowler. Go back to 2005 & re-read the articles. He was an impact player from day 1 even without the gaudy numbers.

Mojo's picture

I knew Nick Collins was fast - but I didn't realize he was that fast. Damn.

Anyway, Casey Hayward had a very good rookie season without being a burner and Burnett can be effective too. I was wondering who was going to be next on the new deal radar.

MLecl0001's picture

Are you Al Davis reincarnated? How fast an athlete runs determines his success huh? Im pretty sure Al tried that in Oakland, how did that work out for them? There is a lot more than just athletic ability, which speed is a part of.

JakeK's picture

"How fast an athlete runs determines his success huh?" ... Except I didn't say this. Don't reword my post.

Try this ... "How fast an athlete can run determines a good portion of his success in any sport." ... This is an exact quote.

This has nothing to do with Al Davis & his draft issues.

Most of the best in the NFL today also happen to be fast. ... How good would Matthews be if he were a step slower?

ohenry78's picture

Just how often does a safety (or any position, for that matter) have to run straight, full steam ahead? Not often. Even when they are going in a straight line, a majority of the time they are reacting to the reciever/ball carrier and/or playing the ball in the air. The conditions that the player runs in during the 40 yard dash are almost never duplicated in-game.

Quickness is much better than speed -- accelleration, stop-and-go, whatever you want to call it. You only need to beat a guy in a foot race if they beat you deep, and if you're quick that's less likely to happen.

I'd be curious to see some of the other agility test scores between the two safeties to see who was quicker.

Skippy's picture

I think 40-yard times are just used as a baseline measurement by NFL teams. It is true, however, that the best players at just about every position are also the fastest at that position.

PackersRS's picture

Dashon Goldson ran a 4.61 in his combine, and he's a terrific safety. Jaryus Byrd, backup All-Pro and notorious ballhawk, ran 4.68. Eric Weddle, starting All-Pro, ran 4.48. Ed Reed ran a 4.45. Brian Dawkins reportedly (could only find this ran a 4.5.

First of all, 40 time =/= speed. 40 ime = how fast a player can run 40 yards in a staight line without pads.

Second of all, speed is important, but not nearly as important as positioning, reaction skills, reading ability, agility and toughness.

There's little correlation between a safety's 40 time and his production in the league.

Saying that Burnett won't reach Collins' level because his 40 time is .15 seconds slower is as big an assumption as there could be. And it's based on essentially nothing.

JakeK's picture

Speed doesn't matter all that much. (even straight-line)
I'm willing to bet there are 32 GMs & 32 HCs that would disagree with you.

No one's arguing that a complete player has only speed, but the very best usually are always fast.

Try this: Slow down both Matthews & Shields by a step and what have you got? ... Answer ... Totally different players from what you see today.

Stroh's picture

Quickness is far more important for a Safety than pure speed measured by a 40 time. It allows quicker reactions in relatively small areas. Quickness and instincts are by far the most important traits. Speed only makes a player POTENTIALLY better, but only if combined w/ Quicks and instincts.

Burnett is plenty fast to be as good as any safety in the game.

Outside CB, like Shield need to have top end speed. So the argument of Shields losing a step is different. Each position has different requirements. Safety doesn't need top speed, but must have quicks and instincts.

redlights's picture

I like it. IMO its also showing Shields where he could be sitting if he would have extended.

I bleed Green More's picture

I like it the kid can play.

ben's picture

Burnett is underrated. He doesn't have quite the freakish measureables as collins but is a little bit more of a ball hawk and maybe a little more consistant reading the o. He is probowl bound this year so it would be wise to sign him now. It would also be wise not to sign raji or shields to long term deals. They both have a hard time staying motivated.

FITZCORE 1252'S EVO's picture

More of a ball hawk? I don't think I can buy that at this point.

Stroh's picture

Shields has played extremely well for the Packers. His rookie year, he was sheltered and only asked to play man coverage. His 2nd season when he didn't perform as well the Packers admitted they put way too much on his plate and he wasn't ready for it. Remember, he had very little experience playing CB before arriving in GB. So they sheltered him as a rookie, caused his sophomore slump by putting too much responsibility than he was ready for. This past year, he started slow in training camp, but once healthy and on the field he was outstanding. I don't think theres any consistency issue w/ him at all. Raji I can agree a little, but he's always been forced to play far too many snaps. So again that's kinda on the Packers. Huge DL/NT like Raji need to be rotated to keep them fresh and productive. I can't completely blame Raji for being forced to play too many snaps!

PackersRS's picture

Very true.

I'd say Shields is the best cornerback in the entire league playing off man coverage.

He struggles playing bump (has progressed significantly since his rookie year) and zone, but he can completely negate speedy receivers. In today's game that invaluable.

Stroh's picture

I agree Shields struggles in zone. I don't see any issue in off or press man. Put him on a WR and he can run w/ anyone. When Tramon hurt his shoulder in '11 Shields was forced to plan a lot of zone, which he had never done. Which partly explains his sophomore slump.

He's gonna get every dime of Tramon's money if not more. IMO this is Tramon's last season in GB and Shields will get that money.

PackersRS's picture

I remember more than once Shields trying to place his hands in the receiver at the LOS but failing and allowing the WR to get a jump start, resulting in a TD.

But I can't precise when that happened, so...

Stroh's picture

Maybe Burnett was more of a ballhawk in college, altho that's debatable. But till he has stepped up to the level Collins was at, you can't say Burnett is a better ballhawk than Collins. His stats aren't that much better in the 1st 3 yrs as Collins to really make that argument. He has to start proving it this year and the next few before you could make that claim.

Evan's picture

For what it's worth, I can remember about 3-4 "easy" picks that Burnett didn't pull in last season.

FITZCORE 1252'S EVO's picture


Stroh's picture

I seem to remember Collins having issues w drop early in his career to. Collins became a turnover machine yr4. All I'm sayin is Burnett needs to do the same to say he's better in that regard

Evan's picture

Oh, yeah, I'm not saying Burnett is a ballhawk or more of one than Collins was, just that he has, so far at least, gotten his hands on a lot of balls. He needs to do a better job of holding onto them.

RC Packer Fan's picture

I agree... I like Burnett. But he is not the same player as Collins. Collins was an impactful type of safety. He was on the verge of being included with Ed Reed and Troy Polomalu.
The biggest thing everyone forgets about the Packers defense was how much better it was when Collins was playing. His speed made up for a lot of other deficiency's on the defense.
Burnett is a good player but Collins was a great player.
Again I like them signing Burnett but Collins was a more impactful player.

I will say though that I believe Burnett has been hurt by the lack of another safety, however Collins didn't have anyone to play beside either.

PackersRS's picture

Only if you're talking about 4+ years Collins.

I'll reaffirm what I've said earlier.

At the same points in their careers, Burnett is a BETTER player than what Collins was. Both in terms of play AND statistics.

Did you know that, in his entire career, Collins only registered 1 sack, and never had more than 84 combined tackles?

Burnett, in 3 years, has 3 sacks (2 last year), and has surpassed 100 tackles twice.

Not to mention that they play different roles. Collins had always been used as a deep safety, whereas Burnett comes down the LOS much more often.

JakeK's picture

You need a few more facts to evaluate Burnett adequately.
Different teams with different defenses. Makes a difference.

Try this:

PackersRS's picture

No I don't. You sure like to tell people what to try.

Try this: Read what I've written before you reply.

You say different teams with different defenses, but then you link an article talking about ranking in yards given, which is as generic and meaningless as there is.

Not to mention that there's nothing in your post or on that link talking about Collins, not by himself, not in comparison with Burnett (which was the point of my post to begin with).

So here's the same stats used by the article in Collins' first 3 years in GB.

2005: 7th total, 10th in rushing. Collins had his best season tackling-wise, with 84 combined.
2006: 21st total, 13th in rushing. Collins had 80 combined tackles.
2007: 11th total, 14th in rushing. Collins had 43 tackles, in 13 games.

See a trend? No? Me neither, because there isn't any. In Collins' best year as a tackler, the defense had it's best performance in both cathegories.

Because yards is as meaningless a stat as there is. Just as the 40 yard dash is as meaningless an exam as there is.

The article contradicts itself in their rankings. They say it's a trend that leading tackles in the deep secondary are a result of bad defenses.

But how exactly is an 11th ranked defense a bad defense? It just doesn't add up.

Even if you're talking about being bad against the run, in Collins' best tackling year the D was 10th against the run.

The ammount of tackles Burnett amassed has nothing to do with how the defense performed.

Try this: Green Bay was THE SECOND BEST unit in missed tackles, with only 35 plays with a broken tackle out of 1026, or a 3,4% of plays with a broken tackle.

So much for that theory...

JakeK's picture

No matter how you want to straw man this discussion, Burnett will never reach the same level of play as Collins.... Has to do with the physical side of the equation, not 3 years of cherry picked statistics.

ben's picture

Neal is next and maybe last in line for an extension.

ben's picture

I'd like to see a sign and trade with shields while letting raji walk. Hopefully there's a good nose tackle class in next years draft or even free agency. I'd give pickett a 2 year extension before I'd give raji big money.

Evan's picture

A sign and trade? This isn't the NBA.

redlights's picture

Shields could play out of his mind and the Pack would still have a good deal by tagging him.

Tag and trade? No. After the tagged year, he'd walk; but it won't come to that.

Evan's picture

Zach just tweeted: "Spotrac predicts #Packers S Morgan Burnett will receive a four-year, $32.1M extension with $16.6M guaranteed"

4 years, $32 mil...that strikes me as awfully high.

Evan's picture

Here is a link to the breakdown - an interesting read.

PackerBacker's picture

Wonder if they got those numbers from his agent. Sound optimistic to me. Especially with a year left on his contract. The only reason he signs now is to get some peace of mind. If he wants a lot of money he would wait until his contract is up.

Evan's picture

Read the whole breakdown - it's a compelling case against other comparable safeties and their recent deals.

(Also, I'm not exactly sure if it would technically be $32 over 5 years since he still has a year left. That'd be more reasonable, I think.)

Stroh's picture

You can be pretty sure the Packers will come in under that projection. Wouldnt surprise if he was 7M or less.

Lou's picture

Burnett's progress has been off schedule because of an ACL, having to move from strong to free safety, and playing with below average and inexperienced safety partners. His overall athletic ability is unquestioned because he started day one in the NFL on a very good defensive unit. It remains to be seen if he can get to Collin's level of play but Collin's was a late bloomer who was questioned for a couple years about not being able to make the big play in the secondary. The numbers discussed on the contract do seem high but he has so much leverage as the only proven starter in the group of safeties. Rajii has the same kind of leverage like Burnett because of his age, lots of starting time, and in a defensive line group that is below average.

Lucky953's picture


Jon's picture

I had to stop reading, too much to respond to.

First off I personally will never compare the guys as a first response when thinking of Burnett; as this article and many suggest. They were a tandum. A tandum that would have really come together had the great Nick Collins stayed healthy. It's not like they competed for a spot. Burnetts a good FS but he would have been a great SS with Collins behind him.

As far as how good Nick was without looking it up I distinctly remember Nick having a lot of 'Ahmad Carroll' problems. Either making young player mental errors like blowing a coverage or gambling due to his speed. Nick was one of my favorite players ever, but to my memory he had quite a few in game disappointments early on. Either rookie or sophmore. F the stats, most of us have watched every game intensively for years, anyone recall the same plays?

Jamie's picture

Yes...year four was when it finally clicked for Nick. I remember everyone saying Nick would never be as good as Sharper, and that was after Sharper mailed it in his last two season's in GB.

I agree with someone earlier who said Burnett's ahead of where Collins was after three seasons, and that's including Burnett missing most of his first year.

Idiot Fan's picture

I was a NC fan from day one, and I always thought he was underrated in his early years. But he definitely had a problem holding on to interceptions the first few years. I remember several easy drops on his part.

Evan's picture

Burnett has had a similar issue bringing in balls.

Skippy's picture

It's hard to believe most of what's posted here. No one supplies any facts or links. You remember things a certain way? So what. Most people can't remember the exact things in a game after only a few days. But many of you think you can remember from many years ago. I call that BS.

How about a little evidence? A few links to video and articles would help. It's just hard to believe without some kind of support.

jeremy's picture

If you want it then go get it yourself, you know where google is...

Jon's picture

How about you shove it. It not fault you lack long term memory. F your facts. Although I do understand statistical people as it is numerical evidence. However, poor play is barely recorded. So let me get this straight; you want me to pull data on bad decision making especially if its away from the ball. Go watch some old school game film bandwagon.

Skippy's picture

"It not fault you lack long term memory."
Ever take an English Class? Try again.

If you had solid evidence of whatever point you are trying to make, you would present it. That's the problem. You are just expressing an opinion based on pretty much nothing.

Glad you have nothing to do with running the Pack. Some advise. Look for the door and give everyone a break.

PackersRS's picture

His opinion has just been backed by the Packers' front office, who've just re-signed Burnett...

Jon's picture

Apologies if I offended anyone else besides him.

The TKstinator's picture

What I consider interesting is that it is Burnett that's being discussed here rather than Raji. I had expected Raji to be the next one "up" but I'm glad it's Burnett instead.

If Raji is "only" a run stuffer, is it necessary to spend a high draft pick/lots of money on that? His pass rush has been very inconsistent, IMHO, and I also understand that sacks alone are not the only way to measure this (hurries, pressures, or even tying up blockers while another player makes the sack, etc)

I keep coming back to the same point: you either trust that Ted and the coaches know what they are doing in these matters (more often than not) or you don't.

Anybody can say "this is a bad move" and be right some of the time. Hell, TT will admit no GM gets it right every time. It's a projection, like the stock market or interest rates. Educated guessing, if you will, although coaches etc have more input and "control", rather than just blind luck.

Discussing this stuff is fun. Disagreeing and then immediately getting personal is getting a little old, once again, IMHO.

Evan's picture

Shut up, idiot.

Evan's picture

Totally kidding, btw.

The TKstinator's picture


Stroh's picture

Your IMHO doesn't fit what the Packers say. They have no reason to lie after a season is played, since saying he played poorly would be a motivator. The Coaches said this was one of Raji's best seasons as a pass rusher. Going simply by stats/sacks it doesn't look that way, but the coaches said it was one of his best seasons, if not the best, even tho he didn't get the stats. PFF also backed it up and gave Raji a strong grade for pass rush.

I'm fine w/ doing Burnett first. I don't really worry too much since the guys that are coming up for extensions will all be motivated to perform well. Burnett's as deserving as anyone. Hope he breaks out this year like Collins did, but even if he doesn't he's a top end Safety.

The TKstinator's picture

If GB knows Raji is a good pass rusher that's good enough for me and he desreves the $. I don't think run stuffers get paid but pass rushers sure do.

I just thought Raji was "discussed" more as far as the next player GB was going to extend. Or not!

Stroh's picture

Run stuffing NT get paid quite well too. When Pickett got extended last he got franchise NT dollars or close. But generally your right that the pass rushers generally get higher dollars.

The TKstinator's picture

Yeah I was surprised to see Wilfork up so high on the $ list and Raji is currently tenth highest paid among DT's, from what I could find.

I'm thinking it's much harder (and thus more expensive) to find DT's who excel vs both run and pass. My thought is that if all GB needed was a run stuffer it wouldn't be so hard to find.

I believe GB knows what they've got and that's good enough for me. I'm not going to pretend to know more than the coaches and mgt.

Although hashing thru it is kinda fun.

Evan's picture

The often overlooked part is Raji is already making a good chunk of money with a healthy cap number ($4.5 mil base, $6.6 mil cap). Any extension shouldn't raise either figure prohibitively (and can easily come from a reduction in Pickett's salary).

Stroh's picture

Evan... I've been sayin that for months or a year. Raji won't cost much more than he's already on the books for. Same is true of Finley.

Cap savings can come from Tramon and Hawk. That's probably 12M+. Along w/ the 13M we currently have. I don't see any major issues signing whoever they decide to keep. Maybe even all of them.

Point Packer's picture

Its always a guessing game no matter what player it is, but I'm assuming TT sees Burnett as a long-term anchor at safety and is gambling that the economics of tying him up right now are a whole lot less than they will be in the future.

Only time will tell, but I'm optimistic.

buster's picture


All will be Packers beyond their rookie contracts. The order means little except who pays for dinner.

Jon's picture

All you did was point out a typo and then ramble. Moron.

I agree with the last two opinions and "expressing an opinion based on pretty much nothing," aka using my short term memory, I would assess Rajis last year as a solid, dirty job season. He ate up blockers and got good penetration. I'm sure someone has stats on it so feel free to check :)

Honestly if we get a solid pass rush from someone along with Clay then that would be enough to have us talking about how good Rahi is and put us in a 'must sign' situation. Agree?

Stroh's picture


Point Packer's picture


Cole's picture

Collins would've had ten picks a season if he had better hands. He dropped so many int's. Even when he was a pro-bowler he dropped tons of them. He was going to the hall of fame.

Losing a hall of famer and someone who was goign to be a pro-bowler (bishop)to injury is huge. Injuries have crippled the Pack the last two years.

Praying for a healthy season. So pumped!

TXBadger's picture

It's usually only after a guy has left that you hear all the details about how focused and motivated a guy was. While a guy is still on the team, the coaches and GM are always very complimentary. Even as a guy is leaving, everything you hear is very positive. And, there is no reason not to be positive. I've finished projects where a co-worker or project manager was mostly incompetent, but all I said at the end was "thanks, this was a really good project". It meant nothing, but there was no reason to burn bridges. I loved Bishop, but it doesn't seem like the coaches and GM were ever as excited about him as I was. In that case an most others, the coaches were always positive, and deflected any issues to themselves, but in the end, they didn't show a lot of love to Desmond. I'd put Corey Williams in the same boat. They do the same with most of the other players, including Shields and Raji. Only at some point in the future will you hear things about the player from a coach or former teammate that lets you say "oh, that's why". More often, it's the player himself who says in an interview that they weren't very focused or professional early in their career. Lang and Dietrich-Smith are good examples of that. What the coaches say right now may or may not be true. Money talks. In this case it's saying that Burnett is a professional who has improved. He has upside that is worth a lot of money, and that he'll keep working hard even after he's paid.

DraftHobbyist's picture

I'll get excited when I see the numbers. $6mm/year is what I think he's worth. Less than that and I'll be ecstatic. More than that and I'll be pretty upset.

Stroh's picture

Apparently you didn't read the link Evan provided. Here it is again...

I would be more than happy w/ something under 7M.

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