Wednesday, March 12, 2014

2014 NFL Free Agency: Packers Sitting By The Sidelines (Which Is A Good Thing)

There were some huge contracts handed out to offensive lineman and safeties on the first day of free agency, which is the Dumbest Day of the NFL Year, so it's probably a good idea that the Packers stayed away. They did their part earlier by overpaying for CB Sam Shields. They need to make some moves in free agency, but hopefully it'll be after the prices have gone down. There are still a lot of good free agents available and here's the ever updating list to prove it.

Anyway, onto what the Packers actually did:
I was a little surprised the Packers didn't tender a contract to Jennings because they usually make an offer to all of their restricted free agents. It's a clear sign they didn't even think he was worth a million bucks and proof positive that he had zero chance of starting next season. In some way his signing by Bears makes a lot of sense because Jennings sometimes played the wrong coverage (which sometimes led to his benching) and the Bears' defensive backs all played the wrong coverage on the game losing touchdown pass to WR Randall Cobb, so the Bears seem to have a fondness for defensive backs who aren't sure what play was called (sarcasm). The Packers need a solution at safety and Jennings wasn't it.

However, I was surprised that they did tender a contract to LB Jamari Lattimore. It's a low one, but probably good enough to keep him in Green Bay. I doubt another team would negotiate a contract with him knowing the Packers would match it. I'm glad to see him return, but I didn't think the Packers would want to pay him $1.431 million to be a backup. He's now clearly in the mix for a starting job in 2014.

TE Jermichael Finley and C Evan Dietrich-Smith are making visits to Seattle and Tampa, respectively, but nothing appears eminent. The Bears might be interested in DE/LB Mike Neal. Meanwhile the Jets might be interested in WR James Jones. I do like TE Owen Daniels, who's expected to visit with the Packers, but I doubt he'd come cheap.

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