For the second consecutive season, the Green Bay Packers were sent home just one game short of reaching the Super Bowl. Once again, GM Brian Gutekunst, head coach Matt LaFleur and the rest of the Packers brass are looking into the abyss of an offseason where they’ll need to go back to the drawing board to formulate a plan that can help the club get over the hump in 2021.
First and foremost, the club will need to address a number of key free agents hitting the open market while also clearing the necessary cap space to get under the diminished salary cap for this coming season. That’s a balancing act that could prove to be quite the challenge. After that, they’ll put their eyes toward the NFL Draft where they’ll be picking No. 29 overall in the first round.
As we wait for all that to unfold, you can check in on the latest happenings in Green Bay in our offseason hub. Here you’ll find every piece of information you’ll need to stay caught up with the club’s comings and goings including the latest rumors and news along with some dates that you’ll want to circle on your calendar.
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Key upcoming datesApril 5: Clubs that hired a new head coach after the end of the 2020 regular season may begin offseason workout programs.April 19: Clubs with returning head coaches may begin offseason workout programs.April: 23: Deadline for restricted free agents to sign.April 28: Deadline for restricted free agents to sign offer sheets.April 29 – May 1: 2021 NFL Draft (Cleveland)
*All dates and times are tentative and subject to change.
2021 regular-season opponents
*The actual 2021 schedule will be released later this offseason.
2021 NFL Draft picksFirst round (29th overall)Second round (62nd overall)Third round (92nd overall)Fourth round (135th overall)Fourth round (142nd overall) — compensatory pickFifth round (173rd overall)Fifth round (178th overall) — compensatory pickSixth round (214th overall)Sixth round (220th overall) — Compensatory pickSeventh round (256th overall)Pending in-house free agents
Restricted free agents:
Green Bay has placed a second-round tender on tight end Robert Tonyan. That ensures that either the club has the ability to match any offer sheet that comes Tonyan’s way and if they elect to not do so they’ll get a second-round pick as compensation. If Tonyan plays on the tender, he’ll earn $3.384 million.
Unrestricted free agents:
Free agent scorecard
Free agents the Packers retained:
Aaron Jones, running backMalik Taylor, wide receiver (ERFA tender)Yosh Nijman, offensive tackle (ERFA tender)Randy Ramsey, outside linebacker (ERFA tender)Allen Lazard, wide receiver (ERFA tender)
Free agents the Packers signed from another team:
Free agents the Packers lost to another team:
Corey Linsley, center (Chargers)Tim Boyle, quarterback (Lions)Jamaal Williams, running back (Lions) Christian Kirksey, linebacker (Texans)
Players the Packers signed who were cut by another team:
*It’s important to differentiate between the players signed as unrestricted free agents and those signed after being cut by another team. This is true because players who are signed after being released by another team do not count in the compensatory draft-pick formula for the team that signs them.
Rumors, reports, updates
March 17: According to Field Yates of ESPN, the Packers have restructured edge rusher Za’Darius Smith’s contract that creates $7.38 million space for the franchise.
March 17: Running back Jamaal Williams isn’t returning to the Packers but is remaining in the NFC North, signing a two-year deal with the Detroit Lions. According to Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network, the deal is worth $7.5 million and Williams will now join a backfield with rising second-year runner D’Andre Swift.
March 16: The Packers have placed a second-round tender on restricted free agent tight end Robert Tonyan. This sets the organization up rather nicely as they’ll either get Tonyan on a one-year deal that’ll pay him just $3.384 million or the club will get a second-round pick if he signs an offer sheet with another team and the Packers elect not to match it. Green Bay also tendered defensive back Chandon Sullivan with the right of first refusal level. That’ll simply give the Packers the ability to match any offer that Sullivan may sign. If he plays on the tender, it’ll pay him a $2.133 million salary.
March 16: The Packers extended tenders on all four of their exclusive rights free agents. That means receivers Allen Lazard and Malik Taylor, offensive tackle Yosh Nijman and outside linebacker Randy Ramsey will all return in 2021 on one-year tenders. Of course, Lazard is the heavy-hitter in this group after becoming a key piece in Green Bay’s passing attack.
March 15: Star center Corey Linsley’s tenure in Green Bay has officially come to a close on Monday as he has inked a five-year deal with the Los Angeles Chargers. With a $62.5 million deal, Linsley becomes the NFL’s highest-paid player at his position and will now block for Justin Herbert.
March 15: Free agent running back Jamaal Williams announced on his social media channels that he will not be re-signing with the Packers. This fate was assumed once Aaron Jones re-signed with Green Bay prior to the start of the legal tampering period and now Williams will look for a new home.
March 14: According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, the Packers have come to terms with Aaron Jones on a four-year, $48 million contract that includes a $13 million signing bonus.
“Aaron would have signed for more in free agency but wanted to stay in Green Bay,” Jones’ agent, Drew Rosenhaus, said of his client. The Packers declined to franchise tag Jones but were able to sign him to a new deal before the start of free agency.
March 9: The Packers elected to not use the franchise tag on star running back Aaron Jones. This means the 2020 Pro Bowl back will be able to enter unrestricted free agency and be free to sign with whichever team will have him. One of those teams could be the Dolphin as Michael Giardi of the NFL Network says he expected Miami to be heavily involved in Jones once the new league year begins.
March 9: According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, wide receiver Devin Funchess took roughly a $750K pay cut to remain with the Packers after opting out last season.
March 2: GM Brian Gutekunst has essentially admitted that it will be extremely difficult for the Packers to retain All-Pro center Corey Linsley, who is set to hit unrestricted free agency this offseason.
“There’s a lot of pieces to this puzzle we’re trying to put together,” Gutekunst said. “Finding a way to bring him back would be ideal, but at the level of compensation he’s at, he’s earned that.”
March 2: With the franchise-tag deadline looming, the clock is ticking for the Packers on whether or not they’ll be placing it on running back Aaron Jones. While speaking to reporters via videoconference, Gutekunst said that the team “certainly could” tag Jones and it’s “something we’re working through.”
“I do think there’s usually better ways to go about it, but if that becomes what is in the best interest of the Packers, I think we’ll do that,” he said.
The franchise-tag deadline is March 9.
Published: 2021-03-20 18:33:13
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