24

February

Surviving Sunday: Packers News, Notes and Links for the Football Deprived

Surviving Sundays With No Packers Football

Surviving Sundays With No Packers Football

The only thing you need to survive this Sunday without Packers football is Tom Silverstein’s story in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel on the Packers front office and scouting operation.

Once again, the Packers were shorthanded at the NFL combine thanks to the departure of John Dorsey for Kansas City. In 2011, John Schneider left for Seattle and Reggie McKenzie departed for Oakland in 2012. All three of Ted Thompson’s right-hand men took general manager jobs.

You want your favorite NFL team to have as much talent as possible, both on the field and in the front office. It’s never a good thing to lose a talented player, just like it’s never a good thing to lose a talented executive. Silverstein’s story does a nice job of showing just how much of a team sport scouting, player evaluation and draft day can be.

However, every team has a star. On the field, the Packers have Aaron Rodgers. In the front office, they have Thompson.

As long as Rodgers is playing, the Packers should be good. As long as Thompson is the general manager, the front office should be fine.

I don’t get overly worried when Packers executives start making their annual exit from Green Bay for opportunities elsewhere. As long as Thompson is around, the Packers should remain on the right track. He’s the star. He’s the one that makes everything go.

Yes, Thompson has been fortunate to have talented current and former staff members, but he’s the one who makes the final call on everything personnel related. Thompson is the man who deserves the credit when a personnel move works out. He’s also the one to blame if something backfires. The Packers front office sinks or swims based on Thompson’s decisions.

Every team, and every front office, needs depth. You can never have too much talent. But as long as your main guys are around — Rodgers on the field, Thompson in the front office — things should be OK in Green Bay.

Packers News and Notes

  • $14 million per year for Greg Jennings? All it takes is one team, but I don’t see it happening. Jennings should be happy to get $14-17 million guaranteed over the life of a deal instead of $14 million per season in addition to any type of signing bonus.
23

February

Green Bay Packers: Risk in Franchise Tagging QB Matt Flynn?

Matt Flynn

Could the Packers tag-and-trade free agent QB Matt Flynn?

Now that the Green Bay Packers have re-signed tight end Jermichael Finley to a two-year, $15 million deal Wednesday, the focus has shifted from what could have been a messy franchise-tag dispute on Finley to whether or not the Packers will tag-and-trade free agent quarterback Matt Flynn.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel beat writer Tom Silverstein thinks the Packers will likely franchise tag Flynn and attempt to trade him away for a high draft pick or two. Sports Illustrated’s Peter King also speculated that Finley’s deal makes it more likely that the Packers would franchise tag Flynn.

Naturally, the increase in compensation from a tag-and-trade with Flynn—which could be a draft pick one to two rounds higher than the compensatory pick the Packers would likely get if he walked in free agency—makes this option very appealing. The Packers would also be receiving a pick or two in the 2012 NFL draft, not a 2013 pick like if Flynn walked.

But there would also seem to be a big risk in going down this path with Flynn.

For one, the Packers would have to clear cap space to fit in the $14.4 million a franchise tag would cost on Flynn. By most estimates, the Packers are currently at around $10-11 million in cap space.

Letting go or completely re-structuring the deals of both Donald Driver and Chad Clifton would get the Packers plenty clear of the $14.4 million mark.

If the Packers did tag Flynn, he would almost certainly sign the offer sheet—putting the Packers on the hook for the $14.4 million and forcing them to find a trade partner. If no team bit on Flynn, the Packers would be stuck with a backup quarterback making considerably more than their NFL MVP starter, Aaron Rodgers. Re-signing center Scott Wells and special teamer Jarrett Bush would also become tricky under the cap.

But here’s the kicker in the whole deal: The Packers won’t even ponder franchise tagging Flynn unless they have a handshake deal in place with another team on both the parameters of a trade and a re-structrured deal for Flynn—the two necessary components for a tag-and-trade scenario to successfully play out.