What's Next for the Packers?

What's next, a successor, more high priced free agents, a big draft day trade, here are my thoughts about what's next for the Packers.  

I'm sure this will be a pretty hollow week for the Packers as they will undoubtably think about what could have been in 2020.  Anytime you make it to the Conference Championship round, even if it is an unexpected run, it becomes a bitter disappointment when you don't get the job done.  

When the year started most realistic prognosticators were hopeful this rebuild would be a 2 year process and the Packers would see a 2-4 game improvement in year 1.  Well, the Packers improved their win total by 8 games, going from 6-9-1 in 2018-19 to 14-4 in 2019-20 and hit on all of the major free agents they brought in during the offseason.  Now, it is safe to say that the rebuild has been cut in half and the Packers will hopefully look to go all in during free agency and the draft in order to get back to the NFC Championship game again next year and come away with a much different result.  

The question now becomes, how do the Packers go all in for 2020?

The answer to this question can be reflected in many different ways, one of those maybe to kick the preverbal can down the road just one more time.  Yes, that means draft according to need and put off drafting Aaron's successor.  The reality is that the Packers will not be able to find an impact inside linebacker, elite receiver, and depth on the defensive line and still draft Rodgers eventual replacement.  The chances of finding Tom Brady in the 6th round is a generational anomaly and you can't bank on that happening in the 4th-7th rounds of the draft.

The next question becomes what does going all in look like?

Personally, I think it starts with releasing Jimmy Graham (or hoping he retires) and Lane Taylor.  Those two transactions (according to over the cap) would give the Packers almost $45 million in cap space in free agency.  After allocating funds for draft picks and retaining guys like Clark (extend), Bulaga, Crosby, Tramon and others, the Packers will probably have 20-25 million in cap space to sign one or two elite free agents (depending on Russ Ball's wizardry).  

1. Cory Littleton 5 years, $85 Million (Yes, I'd give him Mosely money)

2. Emmanuel Sanders/ Robby Anderson 4 years $38 million (year 1 cap hit given in bonuses to free up a little extra space)

3. Jared Cook/Eric Ebron/Hunter Henry 3 years $15 million

Draft:

After landing Littleton in my Packers utopian dream, I am doubling down and drafting Patrick Queen with a premium pick.

Round 1/2: Patrick Queen MLB/ILB (game changer, stock still up and down)

Round 1/2: Doubling either drafting a wide receiver, tight end (Moss), or an IDL to compliment Clark and Lowry

Round 3: Secondary help or Bulaga's replacement.

Rounds 4-7: Best available for depth and areas not drafted in early rounds

I think going 14-4 and making the NFC Championship game changed the way the Packers should approach this offseason.  Being so close to another Super Bowl definitely makes you think twice about drafting a quarterback in the first round. The only way I see Rodgers successor being brought into the building is if Tua or Herbert's stock falls (if an Aaron Rodgers situation happens again).   The next two years should be dedicated to winning one more ring at any cost.  Gutekunst and LaFleur put the Packers back into the conversation, now it's time to make one more big move or two to get them over the top.  

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David Michalski is a staff writer for Cheesehead TV. He can be found on Twitter @kilbas27dave 

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Comments (98)

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CAG123's picture

January 27, 2020 at 11:32 am

The Packers could definitely save some bucks and go after Joe Schobert instead he offers the play making ability that Blake lacked and he's reliable only missing 3 games plus he played at Wisconsin so win win. Then I would like to see them go after Javon Hargrave a DT from the Steelers he offers a good blend of run stopper and pass rusher. After bringing back Lewis a Hunter Henry or Austin Hooper would be a nice addition for the offense I lean more toward Hooper because Henry stays hurt.

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mamasboy's picture

January 25, 2020 at 06:09 pm

Schobert would be great, but how old is he?

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dobber's picture

January 25, 2020 at 07:23 pm

26. Came out same year as Martinez.

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Guam's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:45 am

Completely agree on the DL CAG. The author of the article wants to double down on the ILB position and largely ignore the DL and I think that is backwards. I think the Pack needs at least one if not two additions to the DL and one ILB. Schobert and Hargrove would be great additions to our defense and probably affordable within the $20-25 million available. Then draft a D-lineman at #1 or #2.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 26, 2020 at 01:27 pm

They need to replace three ILBs.

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Guam's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:04 am

Not really since Greene and Campbell will both be available to play the hybrid safety / ILB position that Pettine seems to prefer. In Pettine's current scheme you only need two true ILBs.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 27, 2020 at 01:14 pm

The so-called "hybrid", big safety as rover is a joke. How effective was it in stopping TEs and slot WRs from decimating this defense? Maybe if you have Derwin James on board in lieu of second tier players? Get rid of this desperation defense and secure real LBs that move. You go light, you get annihilated as in the 49rs debacles, the Redskin game, the Denver game, the Vikings with Cook,etc.

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HankScorpio's picture

January 27, 2020 at 07:56 pm

I'm with you. Draft LBs that can play football and do it very fast. Burks and Summers are very fast but they need to work on the playing football part to be NFL starters. It's rare to have that kind of size and speed. So you need to take advantage when the opportunity presents itself.

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Thegravedigger's picture

January 26, 2020 at 07:35 pm

They need bigger dudes up front to free up the ilbs. That's what the 3 4 is supposed to be.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 27, 2020 at 01:19 pm

That is Not Pettine's philosophy or those people would be on board.

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HankScorpio's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:00 pm

Pettine needs to adjust his philosophy. I'm not saying abandon it. It is still far more important to stop the pass than the run, overall.

But you need to do better than 285 yards allowed on the ground 100% of the time. His exact philosophy at present does not met that standard. So adjustments are in order.

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CoachDino's picture

February 01, 2020 at 11:44 pm

Give it time. Montravius Adams was given another year - he failed the Team (dude was a beast in College - what happened) - , plus there were bigger needs with better options that the Packers did fill on D. I agree that you need to address it and there are affordable NT 1 thru 3 Tech FA and draft options.

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PeteK's picture

January 26, 2020 at 12:25 pm

Yes, Hargrove or Reader from Houston.

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optimisticfan's picture

January 27, 2020 at 09:26 am

I agree with CAG123 above about FAs: getting both a DL who can stop the run & pass and ILB. Those are the 2 biggest needs. If we are “going all in” for a SB the next 1-2 years we should be looking for at least 1 proven player at each those positions who are ready to be starters now, not banking on only rookies and current suboptimal players at those positions. If the packers only have money to sign 2 FAs, then taking the risk of not getting a WR in FA and instead drafting a round 1 WR and hoping MVS, EQ etc develop further is the better way to go.

Cut: Graham and Taylor
Lost in FA: Martinez
Resign: all other major contributors this year (including Lewis, Tramon Williams and Veldheer to one year low cost deals)

DL: with Clark, Lowry, new FA, Z Smith (on passing downs), Lancaster, and an improved Keke, doubling down on D line in round 1 hopefully is not essential.

Draft:
Round 1) WR, complementary ILB, or DL if immediate starter level player falls. Or move down if the Giants, Chargers, Panthers, Cardinals etc want to move up from their 2nd round for whatever the going rate would be
Round 2) ? WR, ILB, or OT depending on value of players available
Round 3-7) BPA onward at relative positions of need (? DL, WR, backup QB, blocking TE, OT, RB etc)

So draft could be:
1) WR
2) OT
3) ILB
4) backup QB
5) WR or blocking TE
6) RB
7) who knows

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4zone's picture

January 28, 2020 at 08:13 am

You won't get an upgrade at ILB in Rd 3. You will have to get him in Rd 1, maybe Rd 2. WR is deep enough to grab in Rd 2. Everyhing else should simply be BPA. Go for DL and ILB in FA. A top shelf RB may fall to us to add to Jones in Rd 1 or a starting OL. I expect deep runs at WR and QB in Rd 1 which could open up an unexpected player of day 1 value. This will be an interesting off season for sure.

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optimisticfan's picture

January 29, 2020 at 01:06 pm

4zone,
If they grab a good FA ILB then I don’t think they need to get another huge upgrade ILB. Having 2 “superb” ILBs is not the greatest need on the team. A great DE and quality WR2 is way more important than the 2nd ILB (who may not get that much playing time in Pettine’s system). I don’t think a quality speedy WR will fall to the bottom of round 2 and it may be wise to grab a WR in round 1. Also the top 3 ILBs in this years’ draft seem like the most capable and may all be gone before #30. The drop off to other ILBs seems to be large and many after are only worth a 3rd round pick. Which again would be fine if Packers already picked up a quality ILB and DE in FA. Have to make trade offs somewhere.

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murf7777's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:29 am

According to Spotrac Hargrave MV is 15M. They didn’t show shobert but it is probably around Martinez 16M estimate so adding both wouldn’t be possible if those numbers are any where near accurate.

I think you go after someone like Jordan Phillips from Buffalo who just had a break out year with 9.5 sacks. MV = 6M which seems way too low but that is what they list. He rotated with Ed Oliver. He is 350lb NT/DT so that would mean rotating with Clark unless one them can play DE. I believe Buffalo is a 4-3 so some homework would need to be done by the Pack.

If you get him you can get another FA but your probably not going to be able to afford two big name FA this year.

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CAG123's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:52 am

No way either of those guys is getting Bobby Wagner money neither on of them is close to his level this isn't like the RBs resetting the market with multiple guys breaking almost every year after Wags, Luke and Kendricks the fall off is quite steep. Both Luke (who is retired now) and Kendricks were making 12 and 10 million a year they can definitely get Schoebert in that range. Phillips is tricky after a breakout year but I think he was on a prove it deal with the Bills so I doubt he'll play for that number after a breakout season too bad he waited until his 6th season Packers should stay away from him.

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murf7777's picture

January 27, 2020 at 09:08 am

Cag, I agree they won’t get that money but it will be 10+ and with Hargrove that would be too expensive with the spending from last year. I agree with getting Hargrave it’s just if you get him you’re probably not signing another 10+ multiple year contract in addition. I’m fine with that. There are other ways to fix the Mlb position IE: trade, lessor FA and/or draft.

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CAG123's picture

January 27, 2020 at 11:29 am

Trading just means taking another players contract and they’re trying to get rid of the “lesser FA” that still litter this roster I think they can get it done no more JAGs or bottom tier players like Goodson and Schobert isn’t this elite LB either but he’s more complete than Blake and offers the same leadership and availability.This is what happens when you neglect a position like the LB for so long TT thought he could just put anyone back there now they’re scrambling either having to hit on a FA or a draft pick.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 27, 2020 at 01:24 pm

Clark can play three tech or five. There are big bodies in the draft also. Phillips is a good player. Base 3-4 has to be able to transform to some 4-3 looks if you want to be successful shutting down multi-faceted offenses. If Pettine shows up with the same dated schemes, there will be trouble moving on in the playoffs, 2020.

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Tundraboy's picture

January 27, 2020 at 07:57 pm

"If Pettine shows up with the same dated schemes, there will be trouble...."

That's for sure.

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Dzehren's picture

January 25, 2020 at 12:23 pm

The strength of the 2020 draft is WR and OL. This aligns with GB”s needs. Time to focus on offense with premium picks this year.

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NickPerry's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:15 am

Excellent point... With an abundance of WR and O-Linemen in this draft and the fact they both are needs of the GB Packers, I'd say drafting for a need and getting the BPA might actually line up for them this year and they do both.

The Packers have four very specific needs to fill in the draft, some might say 5 if you count TE. While I like Sternberger and IMO will be one of those "2nd year jumps" who actually makes the jump, I understand why people feel TE in a need.

When FA hits and Gute makes his move, we'll know exactly where he's going in the draft a month later providing he gets his man or two in Free Agency. I'll say it again...I CAN'T WAIT till next season already because this team is going to be really good.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 26, 2020 at 10:01 am

Run more and throw less. That’s the focus.

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Ferrari-Driver's picture

January 25, 2020 at 12:45 pm

I gave you a thumbs up, but I think wide receiver has to be in the talk for the 2nd or 3rd round.

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Dzehren's picture

January 25, 2020 at 08:52 pm

GB could also trade back a few spots from pick 30 like we did with Jordy Nelson then select WR, OL & TE . DL & ILB round 4 or 5.

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dobber's picture

January 26, 2020 at 04:07 pm

Given the desirability of 5th year options, #30 could be a hot spot on draft night.

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murf7777's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:36 am

Unless Pack sees a can’t miss prospect at 30 I love the idea of trading back and get 2 seconds and 2 third rounders. The depth of the draft coordinates with their needs. . I think #1 need is DL, but there is a lack of depth in the draft, so I’m hoping they handle that need in FA.

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stockholder's picture

January 25, 2020 at 01:58 pm

Wars are won in theTrench. Prority one is the DL. Forget the draft Here. Spend the money here! Money for a FA WR is also the wrong move. Remember that you want Rodgers replacement. Why spend the money for a wr then. You must draft Here/ rd 1. Somebody to go opposite Adams. That won't be cancer. That will be the future! Forget the TE. I trust Jace. And there are going to be bargains at TE. So ILB is the big picture. pettine is borderline to be brought back. This defense will change. And you must get players that can change with it. Littleton or Schobert are fine. But the money is on Martinez.(ugh) //// Goodson is gone! Draft Bargains here. Your signing of a new ILB will solve the signings of Bulaga and Martinez. So it's a win win. Then draft the OL instead.

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HankScorpio's picture

January 25, 2020 at 02:44 pm

I'm with you, Stockholder. Adding OL/DL in FA seems like a little bit safer bet than spending on ILB and WR for my tastes. Better value and better predictability.

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PeteK's picture

January 26, 2020 at 12:31 pm

Sanders is going into his 10 season( maybe on a very low guarantee) and Anderson is a head case.

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dobber's picture

January 26, 2020 at 03:17 pm

Sanders has had a couple major leg injuries, but has come back quickly each time and has shown that he can still run. Still, at 30, you have to wonder if the next season will be his "Jimmy Graham" season when he goes from being fast and quick to being pedestrian. Still, he's a competitor who can stretch the field and has shown the ability to have big games.

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Thegravedigger's picture

January 26, 2020 at 09:52 pm

I think hes 33. But he can still move. Rodgers needs a trusty vet that can actually run

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Leatherhead's picture

January 27, 2020 at 09:39 am

Does he improve our defense? Does he improve our running game? Is he a better blocker than Lazard? Does he protect our QB from injury?

Run more. Throw less. Keep your QB healthy all season. Keep your defense off the field.

Improve the run game, improve the defense. Our defense improved from #22 to #9 in scoring defense. Add some talent and improve our run game and we’ll be the team that throws 10 passes in a championship game.

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CAG123's picture

January 27, 2020 at 03:45 pm

Your whole run more throw less philosophy is only validated if the 49ers win the SB. If they lose they’ll just be another running team that didn’t win it joining the Hawks, Ravens, Bills, Titans. The 49ers were afforded the luxury of throwing 8 times because the Packers had a glaring weakness and they exploited it that’s not a recipe for success. They can’t hide Jimmy G forever.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 27, 2020 at 04:16 pm

No. The fact that 80% of the top rushing teams make the playoffs validates that. It exposed your QB to fewer hits. It keeps your defense off the field. Those are facts

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CAG123's picture

January 27, 2020 at 05:22 pm

I mean is it about making the playoffs or winning a SB? BB telling his Giants to let Thurman Thomas rush for 100 yards makes being a run based team a hard sell and he did that in 91. The Chiefs and 49ers show you can get their either way the Packers should continue their balanced attack and get better on the defensive side of the ball. Playing keep away without a strong def isn't going to work out.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:28 pm

It’s always about winning the division, because if you win the division, you get a home playoff game and a chance to advance in the playoffs. That’s success in the NFL.

You are correct about needing a strong defense, and we improved substantially to be a top ten defense in scoring, in the red zone, in takeaways, and opposing passer rating. If we could add a couple guys we might be even better next year.

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CAG123's picture

January 27, 2020 at 09:26 pm

Yeah after looking up Pettine's work without Rex those are usually the stats that get improved on he doesn't seem to care about the gawdy stats but that run defense needs work the Pack needs a second big body next to KC that can clog running lanes and help collapse the pocket the LBs need help too.

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dblbogey's picture

January 25, 2020 at 04:41 pm

Pettine is coming back.

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stockholder's picture

January 25, 2020 at 05:26 pm

Yes I heard that. Old News. Buttttt- He was rumored to be leaving FOR A New Head Coach Job. (before SF) With so many thinking LeFluer would consider other options How Long does Pettine have? HOW LONG??????

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mamasboy's picture

January 25, 2020 at 06:13 pm

We've gotta keep Bulaga! He's tough as hell. I think he's only 30, too. My guess is the Vikings would scoop him up in a heart beat.

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dobber's picture

January 25, 2020 at 07:26 pm

With what cap space? They have virtually none and players of their own to sign..

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Dzehren's picture

January 25, 2020 at 08:33 pm

The Vikings are totally cap strapped. They won’t be active in free agency due to cap issues.

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dobber's picture

January 25, 2020 at 09:12 pm

If you decide you don't want a player, you cut ties and let the chips fall. You can't make personnel decisions of this type based on trying to play keepaway. It's different midseason with waiver claims on cheap players.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 26, 2020 at 02:59 pm

Without Bulaga, we have 8 offensive linemen under contract for 2020 and I don’t think that happened by accident. I also believe Turner was acquired.....at substantial cost.....to move to RT this season. Bulaga has a market value of around $10 million per season.

If the plan is to run more and throw less, spending resources on a WR seems unwise. If the plan is to throw more and expose our QB to more potential hits, then it makes a lot of sense.

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dobber's picture

January 26, 2020 at 03:33 pm

People keep pointing to Turner's salary and say it's high for a G, but he's firmly around #15 (so in the top quarter) for OG salary cap hits in 2020 and 2021. The top 10 G all have cap hits at or above $10M. He's around $8M. His cap hit would actually place him HIGHER in rank as a RT than as a G. As players sign over the next couple years, he's going to look more and more affordable assuming he finds his stride.

As for the run more/throw less economics, I tend to agree with you. If that's what the current regime wants to do, it makes sense to invest your resources in positions that make you more effective in that regard. Still, if you can find players the clearly improve your front liners at any position without derailing your long-term goals, you'd be foolish not to do it.

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HankScorpio's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:06 am

The best thing they can do for the run game is give opposing defenses something to worry about in the pass game. If a DC has to think twice about rolling a Safety up to the LoS or putting an extra DB on the field instead of DL/LB, it will help them run more effectively. Right now, an opposing DC has to worry about Adams and probably figures his guys can handle everyone else just fine. And they are right to think that.

It's a passing league. 30 years of rule changes in that direction say so. They must get better there first and foremost. If they do, it will help the effectiveness of the run game and even allow them to run more often.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 27, 2020 at 04:12 pm

I don’t think your assertion bears scrutiny. Are you saying that SF ran over us because we had to respect their passing ability? That Ezekiel Elliott gets all his yards because teams are worried about Dak Prescott? Or Cook gets his because of the threat of Cousins?

Here is the deal: Good running teams go to the playoffs and bad running teams usually don’t. We were around 13th in attempts and yards. We should be trying to improve that.

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stockholder's picture

January 26, 2020 at 05:02 pm

Sorry - But 10 mil. for part time work, is like paying Graham. Then most want to sign the guy that backed up Bulaga. Thats money this team can't afford at RT. There is No guarantee Gute drafts a Wr rd. 1. The game changers could be gone and he'll take defense again. Even a CB.

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PeteK's picture

January 26, 2020 at 12:29 pm

I thought it was a definite that Pettine was back.

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HankScorpio's picture

January 25, 2020 at 02:35 pm

They might need to cut Linsley to do all that. Adding him to the list of cuts brings them up to $50 mil and makes such an ambitious agenda more doable, IMO.

The article says they Packers will have between 20-25 mil available for free agents and then advocates $31 mil in average value on 3 contracts. That also assumes rookies, extending Clark, re-signing Bulaga, Crosby, Tramon and others happens within 17-22 mil in cap space. That might be a little ambitious, too. Especially considering you need to keep some cap space in the pocket for practice squad and injury replacements.

Of course, Russ Ball is a big fan of low yr 1 cap hits that ramp up dramatically as a contract matures. So maybe Ball can make those numbers work.

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Lare's picture

January 25, 2020 at 03:35 pm

IMO, they should let Graham, Taylor, Bulaga & Martinez go.

DL- Sign a FA and draft one fairly early.

ILB- Sign a FA and draft one fairly early.

WR- Sign a FA and draft one fairly early.

TE- sign a FA and draft one.

OL- Sign Veldheer and draft one.

QB- Sign a veteran FA or draft one for backup.

K- Sign Crosby and some consistent competition for Scott.

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Tundraboy's picture

January 25, 2020 at 10:50 pm

Ok.

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CAG123's picture

January 25, 2020 at 11:27 pm

Jesus how much cap space do you think they have? 6 FA and an entire draft class unless they can find some FA in the garbage these guys are going to want to be at LEAST respectably paid,

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Lphill's picture

January 25, 2020 at 04:10 pm

Hargrove DT from the Steelers and linebacker Kwitakowski from the Bears should be affordable and improve the run D right away.

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dobber's picture

January 26, 2020 at 03:37 pm

I would argue that the only thing Kwiatkowski gives you over Martinez is a lower cap number. I think he's really only a run-down ILB. Bringing him in means you need to bring in another ILB just to cover passing downs.

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NickPerry's picture

January 27, 2020 at 06:40 am

Affordable AND an upgrade at both positions...I like it!

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murf7777's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:50 am

Hargrove is a big name FA and would for them to go and get him, but wouldn’t leave much for another, except fringe FA. I’m ok with that as I think the DL is most important. Address other positions in the draft or a trade.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 27, 2020 at 01:33 pm

The money goes to the offense this year. It still comes down to scoring more points and Pressure on the opponents Defense. The power running game for this offense has to be established and they must bag a RT and WR high in this draft to survive the competition. Ted time is over. Players, not Plays.

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packergal's picture

January 27, 2020 at 10:10 am

Lphill,

Agree with you.
I mentioned N. Kwiatkowski in a different post as the best ILB option and got many thumbs down.

However, he is better than Schobert and even better than Danny Trevathan (who he replaced).

Hope Gute looks hard at Nick K. since he could be very affordable and will provide immediate, side to side coverage/ upgrade.

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Leatherhead's picture

January 25, 2020 at 04:16 pm

Run more, pass less, build the defense. Get a TE who can block his man. Get a short-yardage bull to help Jones/Williams. Replace Burks or Summers. Add a hog to the DLine.

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Tundraboy's picture

January 25, 2020 at 10:50 pm

Ok here as well.

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4zone's picture

January 25, 2020 at 05:39 pm

I may be an outlier here but I'm seeing this past year as a fluke. Not a harbinger of future success. We won more games probably just from circumstance than skill (see KC game).

I like our position and think we can take another step forward but lets hold off on the acolades for the time being and put a little bit of 'reasonable' back into the conversation.

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PackfanNY's picture

January 25, 2020 at 06:33 pm

Trying to predict next year is an absolute exercise in futility as well as completely meaningless.

Just as a point of reference at this time last year we didn’t have a coach, we hadn’t sign the 4 free agents and hadn’t had the draft yet. Last year at this time If I said the Packers would be 13-3 and a Win within the SB I would have been excoriated by the “experts” on this board.
“Why, they were 6-9-1 last year. No way what are you a fanboy.”No one and I mean no one has any idea what is going to happen. It could be 4-12 or 14-2. You have no idea. NONE.

Many of the same posters were here predicting doom and gloom last year and now have selected amnesia. The new mantra is they were “lucky” to be 13-3 so now obviously they won’t win 8 games next year. Some of the dumbest things I’ve ever read on here.

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4zone's picture

January 25, 2020 at 08:39 pm

You go to the other extreme. Luck is a part of every season, sone good, sone bad. Play this season over from the beginning, we could easily have won only ten games.

What this means is we can't simply expect the rest of the NFL to roll over because of last year's record. It is an ever changing landscape, Niners went from 4 wins to the SB, any given team can suffer the opposite any given year.

All I am saying is take nothing for granted. If we want to win 14+ games next year, we are going to have to play better and more consistant than this past year.

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PackfanNY's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:48 am

“We could easily have won only ten games”...If candies and nuts....

I am not expecting the rest of the NFL to roll over either. However, as I pointed out I expect Gute will have a good draft, he will be somewhat active on the FA market. Lots of changes coming for all teams including the Packers. Trying to guess next year’s record is impossible.

I agree nothing should be taken for granted. However, this past year is done. Next year is a whole new year. Last years team will have very little to do with the 2020 Packers.

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jannes bjornson's picture

January 26, 2020 at 01:40 pm

It means having PLAYMAKERS gives you a Better chance of winning the close games. That pushes a 6-9-1 team to 13-3 when you have the franchise guy at QB. Reload and attack. Get rid of the Fans stuck in 2011-18. Send them to Dullass. See where Gutedkunst wants to put his cash in free agency. There are bargins to fill gaps in the depth department. Some of the Players have been exposed, especially in the run stop phase of defense. Get rid of them and bring in some bad asses. OT WRs, ILBs DE, RB FB in the draft.

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Tundraboy's picture

January 25, 2020 at 10:53 pm

"It could be 4-12 or 14-2. You have no idea. NONE.

I could be happy with either as long as the team was improving and I wouldn't mind a top 5 pick.

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Packer_Fan's picture

January 25, 2020 at 07:32 pm

Here is where I am at.

1) Release Graham and Taylor. Restructure Rodgers to get some more relief.
2) Big FA signings for DL and ILB
3) Lessor FA signings for veteran OL and receiver. I would also bring back Williams for the right price. He was not a liability this year in the slot. No more TE FA signings. They have not panned out for three straight years.
4) Draft DL or ILB in first round and WR in second round. Rounds 3-7 is fill in. The whole thing about the draft is to hit on first year starters. SF got three huge ones and some good contributors. GB got two and not much beyond that.

And more,.. Pettine has to be able to stop the run better. I don't know if it was a lack of practice time, but the pursuit looked terrible against SF. The defense was not prepared to control the edge and prevent cutbacks. And yes, I am not over the loss yet.

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4zone's picture

January 25, 2020 at 08:38 pm

Would be nice, but we can probably only afford one top shelf FA signing and then some depth players.

I think we can get two starters in the draft unless we land a mid to late round sleeper as well. That gets us three new starters and then whoever is currently on the roster who makes a significant leap up in the off season.

I am intersted to see the CFL WR we signed to a futures contract to see if he can step right in and be a weapon.

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Tundraboy's picture

January 25, 2020 at 10:55 pm

Love this!

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The_Justicar's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:00 am

They restructured Rodgers several weeks ago. That is why they have the current cap space that they do. Can’t restructure him again this year.

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Jonathan Spader's picture

January 27, 2020 at 09:40 am

1. Rodgers cap hit was already restructured.
2. Like who?
3. Lewis has been a good TE signing for the $$$. Cook was a great signing. Bennett and Graham weren't. Do to TE what you did at OLB get ascending players. Hunter Henry could have a breakout year in 2020 if he finally stays healthy.

For Pettine to stop the run better we need better tackling. The leading tackler BY FAR is the guy Packer fans are screaming to be cut Martinez.

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AgrippaLII's picture

January 26, 2020 at 03:47 am

I look for Gurekunst to identify a position of need and do what he did last year during free agency. By that I mean looking for players who are free agents for the first time and have steadily improved each year...and then throwing a long term contract at them early in the draft. I think DT looks especially good this year.

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4zone's picture

January 28, 2020 at 08:29 am

I think if we could do for our DL what we did at OLB last year in FA this team would instantly have a top 10 defense. We probably can only land 1 though and possible an ILB. I could live with that. Then go heavy on the offensive weapons in the first three rounds of the draft.

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dobber's picture

January 26, 2020 at 03:45 pm

One thing that I felt BG did a nice job of during the off-season last year was using FA to create flexibility in the draft to take advantage of opportunities in the draft or to augment those positions that will be harder to fill with good players (i.e. signing players at positions where the draft is weak). While some here will argue over whether or not the decisions the Packers made draftwise constituted opportunities, I think that BG and his staff would argue they did. I expect more of the same this off-season: I'm hoping they're working on determining where they can balance FA acquisitions with draft pool strength and weaknesses. Until FA kicks in and until the Combine passes, projecting draft picks might be fun...but nothing more than that.

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ShooterMcGee's picture

January 26, 2020 at 05:01 pm

I agree with you. I have read that the draft is strong at wr and weak at LB. It would make sense to addresss LB in FA with a player such as Schobert or Kwiatowski. Then wait to draft a wr, perhaps multiple. Mims or KJ Hill make sense in the 2nd, Collin or Tyler Johnson in the 3rd, then take a flyer in the later rounds on a guy like Rambo from OK.

The d-line still perplexes me. Why didn't we draft Wilkens or Lawrence last year at 12 when we had already signed 2 OLBs? We may have been able to stop the run better. It wouldn't be a need this year if we had.

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Thegravedigger's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:23 pm

I dont think they thought z and p smith would both have such good seasons. P smith only had 4 sacks last year. My boy is a skinz fan and he said he took alot of plays off. But still i was thinking the same thing you were, especially about Dexter Lawrence. He is a huge dude. Perfect for the 3 4.

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dobber's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:28 pm

Remember, too, that in April they didn't know that Daniels was going to come to camp injured and out of shape. I still think they saw Gary as an opportunity they couldn't pass up.

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optimisticfan's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:41 pm

I wish I could add more than one like to Dobber’s comment about about getting FA to open up opportunities during the draft and having a complex big board comparison between the FAs and draft players available.

Spot on. However we like to guess otherwise we wouldn’t be reading this....

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ShooterMcGee's picture

January 26, 2020 at 04:41 pm

QB is a definite draft need. If Eason or Love are still available at 30 we should take a chance. #12 looks done.

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mamasboy's picture

January 26, 2020 at 04:41 pm

Littleton ran a 4.73 at the combine. That's Goodson speed at about 20 pounds less.

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dobber's picture

January 26, 2020 at 08:38 pm

Silverstein in JSOnline reports him as good in coverage but a liability against the run.

https://www.jsonline.com/story/sports/nfl/packers/dougherty/2020/01/25/d...

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Thegravedigger's picture

January 27, 2020 at 03:53 pm

I would like to see dj swearinger in that rover role. He has some issues but he tackles and can run with tight ends.

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Lphill's picture

January 26, 2020 at 04:53 pm

DT Hargrove from the Steelers and Kwitnikowski LB from Bears would be affordable free agents to round out the defense.

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MarkinMadison's picture

January 27, 2020 at 07:23 am

Littleton is not worth $85M. He's not even my first choice. Let Martinez walk. Get Schobert. Add another ILB in the draft.

There is good value in FA on the DL this year.

Why on earth would you give a 32-year-old WR a four year contract? At over $9M a year? Yes, the Packers need weapons. Yes, they need to go all-in for the next 2-3 years. No, let's not get stupid. Get Hollister or Hooper. Get another RB to complement Jones. News flash: this is a running league again. #12's ticket to another Super Bowl will be punched the same way that John Elway's ticket was punched.

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HankScorpio's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:41 am

Littleton ran a 4.73 in pre-draft work compared to Martinez's 4.71. I don't watch the Rams enough to know if his play speed is significantly better. But I know the reason I wouldn't re-sign Martinez for more than $2-3 mil/yr is that he cannot run fast enough to get the job done.

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murf7777's picture

January 27, 2020 at 09:03 am

Mark, the rules have changed to become a passing league. I believe what you are seeing with some running teams having great success this year is an anomaly. The SB has a great passing game in KC and SF a great running. I think SF wins thou not because of its run game, but more because of its great D. Build the DL and add weapons for Arod is my wish list.

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MarkinMadison's picture

January 27, 2020 at 07:41 pm

I think what we are seeing is everybody and their brother built a defense that is designed to stop the pass, so offenses that emphasize the run are having a field day.

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Handsback's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:25 am

Here's what I think....
Green Bay needs an anchor on the outside of the Dline. A DE that can stop the run and keep blockers off the LBs. See this as a FA.

Second the Packers need a run-stopper at ILB to team with a chaser. Is Martinez a chaser or a thumper? I think he's a chaser and his run stopper partner needs an upgrade. Two problems in this case...if Martinez wants a lot of money, Green Bay will have to replace two guys in that position to get it right. Maybe Bolton is the chaser solution and they get a rookie to partner with him. Either way starting over in that position will be painful. -Could be multiple draft picks here or FA and draft pick.

Third, is Alexander the rookie we saw or the CB we saw last year? I ask this because his performance dropped off this past season. When the Packers draft, will they pass on a very talented corner or go elsewhere? I could see another high pick being a CB. Can never have enough of those guys.- This is a draft piece.

Green Bay needs to draft a slot receiver. Not take a player and plug them in. They need a quick guy that catches the ball over the middle for those first downs.-Draft one WR and one TE

Draft an OT that has potential as well as an OG. Could see two picks here.

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albert999's picture

January 27, 2020 at 08:40 am

We need a fast slot We need a fast receiver We need a fast ILB We need an OL man We need A run stuffer
They all need to be TUFF
Coaches need to be smarter
Rodgers needs to be smarter

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Rob43's picture

January 27, 2020 at 01:19 pm

Cleveland Browns have finally found their new general manager and no it is not Eliot Wolf. Do you think he will return back to green bay

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

January 27, 2020 at 05:14 pm

Also, let go of:
1. M.Lewis
2. G. Allison
3. J. Kumerow
4. Vitale
5. Montravious Adam's
6. Tyrone Williams
7. Josh Jackson (Maybe)
8. Blake Martinez (Unless pay cut)
9 Jimmy Graham
10. Lane Taylors
11. Jason Spriggs
12. K. Fackerall

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

January 27, 2020 at 05:17 pm

1. WR needs to be the Packers 1st pick unless something is done in Free Agency.

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

January 27, 2020 at 06:41 pm

It's like I have said in end it comes down to 1 on 1 matchups. You have to have the talent. You have to have the better team. Player for player the Packers did not match up and we knew they didn't match up. We are going to HAVE to cut a lot of players and use Free Agency once again to sign at least minimum 3-4 Quality veteran players.

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Doug Niemczynski's picture

January 27, 2020 at 06:44 pm

One game away from Super Bowl contention we have to go ALL IN !!!! Max out the $$$$$
or trade Rodger's. I say $$$$ all in.

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