So much happened in free agency this year (and maybe more will happen – we can update this if it does) and there is no shortage of opinions on things we should have done differently. Let’s pull together all the good stuff from free agency so we can look back a year from now and see how right we were about everything.
TJ Lang left for Detroit for a huge deal that many thought the Packers should have matched, citing continuity on the line and the fact that the replacement is a big unknown. Some fans wondered if Nick Mangold could be signed and moved from center to guard to fill the gap.
Although everyone really thought Jared Cook was coming back, talks broke down and Ted uncharacteristically signed a big name replacement in Martellus Bennett. Most people seem to think Bennett is going to be even better. Some thought Cook could still come back to form an unstoppable two tight end set, but that was quickly squelched when the Packers signed Lance Kendricks the next day.
Julius Peppers left, but no one really fussed. He went back home to Carolina. We’re all happy for him. However, Eddie Lacy went to Seattle (with a lot of discussion over his weight and weight-based bonuses), Micah Hyde went to Buffalo, and JC Tretter went to Cleveland and there was much teeth gnashing. They all seemed to get above-market contracts, but the fans wanted and expected everyone to be re-signed.
Stephon Gilmore and AJ Bouye were the top free agent corners. Given that the Packers struggled at that position last year, a lot of people were clamoring for that. Both got gigantic contracts with very un-Packer-like salaries.
Darrelle Revis recently had his charges dropped and is hanging around. A lot of people would like it if we signed him since cornerback was such a sore subject.
Davon House was signed, which a lot of people wanted. Some think he will be an outside starter playing press man, others thinks he’s just veteran depth. No one thinks he’s a savior of the secondary.
There’s a discussion continuing to rage on about Adrian Peterson and Jamaal Charles. I, personally, am not interested in two 30 year-old backs with multiple knee surgeries, but I seem to be in the minority. More recently, Charles seems to have inched ahead of AP in popularity and fit with the Packers
Connor Barwin was looking like a potential Packer candidate long before he was actually released and, even though the Packers were widely reported to have interest, he signed with the Rams.
Dont’a Hightower was another linebacker that fans seemed to want, but was never paired with the Packers in any reports.
Despite some big name receivers like Alshon Jeffery and Terrelle Pryor being available, not a lot of fans seemed to long for them. Same for the safety position, where Duron Harmon and Tony Jefferson were available.
I really wanted Dontari Poe, but no one listens to me. He signed with Atlanta and I expect him to be a problem for us.
We’ll whip this out next year and see what we should have done. Maybe we’ll learn something… nah, even if none of these guys pan out, next year will be different