Friday, March 29, 2013

Will Aaron Rodgers Receive A New Contract Because The Packers Miss Out On Free Agents?

ESPN reported that the Green Bay Packers are on the verge of paying QB Aaron Rodgers an obscene amount of money. Unfortunately that's not a big surprise, I've been expecting it all offseason. So I didn't have anything to say about it until I read this article from Rob Demovsky:
Without having anyone confirm it on record, his speculation is that the Packers probably met with Rodgers's agent, David Dunn, who was at the NFL annual meetings at the same time as the rest of the Packers' front office, and they probably made some progress on negotiations. That's a lot of speculation, but it certainly sounds possible.

What his article got me thinking about was whether the Packers lack of success in re-signing WR Greg Jennings has opened the door to more salary cap room for Rodgers in 2013. If the Packers had re-signed Jennings, and even TE Tom Crabtree, I think they could have pitched the idea to Rodgers that they've spent so much on free agents that now don't have enough room over the next couple years to extend him. Since free agency was a bust, they started talking to David Dunn about an extension for Rodgers last week.

There was some talk a couple weeks ago about making Rodgers play out the remainder of his contract, which is something other teams with elite quarterbacks have been willing to do (Drew Brees and the Saints, Peyton Manning and the Colts). But usually the Packers have re-worked contracts when players were underpaid based on their performance, such as when they extended Charles Woodson and increased his base salary after he was named defensive player of the year in 2009.

It seems like the Packers put themselves in a good position. If they had made some moves in free agency, then Rodgers would have probably been content with a lesser salary over the next couple years. But when it didn't work out, they can now take care of their best player by giving him a new contract.

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