sho nuff

2016 Green Bay Packers thread

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Anyone have a rough idea of where they sit now in terms of cap space?

I think google does.

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Well Hawk was just released

http://fox6now.com/2015/02/25/a-j-hawk-released-after-nine-seasons-with-the-green-bay-packers/

“I spent nine great years in Green Bay. I had awesome teammates and coaches and a great medical staff and equipment staff. Many of them have become my closest friends. We won a ton of games, as well as a Super Bowl, and I loved everything about playing for one of the greatest franchises in all of sports. The fans in Green Bay are incredible. Between playing at Lambeau Field as well as seeing them on the road, they always supported us. I am looking forward to my next opportunity in the NFL, but I’ll always cherish my years as a Green Bay Packer.”

what to do with my AJ Hawk jersey now... hmmm....

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I like the release of Hawk. Clearly he never played to his expectations for draft position, but worse, he never played to his contract value. Not a bad player, but a bad business decision. The money is better spent elsewhere if one wants bang for the buck, and today's NFL is all about having your cap dollars produce maximum bang for the buck. Good luck to him.

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Good post. The Packers probably have money for both Cobb and Beluga now. Could focus their draft picks on defense now.

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The glaring weakness at ILB just became a black hole. The Packers are going to have to make multiple moves to fill the ILB positions. I would not be surprised if they drafted multiple and added one free agency. They are not going to waste Matthews' talent playing ILB rotations all year.

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Following a team that rarely makes desperate or stupid offseason moves can sure be boring, but this is about as crazy as things get in Green Bay.

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Following a team that rarely makes desperate or stupid offseason moves can sure be boring, but this is about as crazy as things get in Green Bay.

Not all that crazy of a move and was pretty much expected.

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Following a team that rarely makes desperate or stupid offseason moves can sure be boring, but this is about as crazy as things get in Green Bay.

Not all that crazy of a move and was pretty much expected.

The whole "Matthews inside" thing was the writing on the wall. Ted knew mid-year that Hawk would be released after the season.

The part that sucks is he's cut instead of playing out his contract - so he won't count for compensatory picks if he's signed by another team. Even a free 6th would have been nice... Ted has found contributors that late.

I am now 99% certain that Cobb, Bulaga will both be re-signed soon, and Hayward will likely receive an extension at some point before the end of next season.

Edited by Phenomena

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Following a team that rarely makes desperate or stupid offseason moves can sure be boring, but this is about as crazy as things get in Green Bay.

Not all that crazy of a move and was pretty much expected.

The whole "Matthews inside" thing was the writing on the wall. Ted knew mid-year that Hawk would be released after the season.

The part that sucks is he's cut instead of playing out his contract - so he won't count for compensatory picks if he's signed by another team. Even a free 6th would have been nice... Ted has found contributors that late.

I am now 99% certain that Cobb, Bulaga will both be re-signed soon, and Hayward will likely receive an extension at some point before the end of next season.

The last statement is what this is about.

Saves $3.5 mil and they need to try and sign Cobb and Bulaga and sign House or tramon as well.

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Any potential for him getting resigned for a more reasonable amount?

Hopefully not, he simply isn't athletic enough to be in the league anymore.

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Following a team that rarely makes desperate or stupid offseason moves can sure be boring, but this is about as crazy as things get in Green Bay.

Not all that crazy of a move and was pretty much expected.

The whole "Matthews inside" thing was the writing on the wall. Ted knew mid-year that Hawk would be released after the season.

The part that sucks is he's cut instead of playing out his contract - so he won't count for compensatory picks if he's signed by another team. Even a free 6th would have been nice... Ted has found contributors that late.

I am now 99% certain that Cobb, Bulaga will both be re-signed soon, and Hayward will likely receive an extension at some point before the end of next season.

This news has literally no effect on my expectations for Conn or Bulaga. Hawk was always going to be cut - this isn't news, it isn't just confirmation of what everyone knew would happen.

The cut of Hawk, the cut of Jones, the $23M of cap space, the extra $7.5M carried over from last year.....this was all part of the math behind why TT would keep Cobb and Bulaga (if feasibl - there is always the chance either one has absurd contract demands).

Extending Hayward is a possibility, but frankly he isn't a slam dunk. He has to prove he can stay healthy and contribute as more than a slot DB. I'm a fan, but my guess is Ted makes him play this year before extending him.

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The Hawk release came about 3 years to late.

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Randall Cobb rumors: Packers to let WR test NFL free agency

http://www.bigcatcountry.com/2015/2/26/8114385/randall-cobb-rumors-contract-packers-nfl-free-agent-jaguars

I can't say I blame them - Cobb must not be relenting from his asking price, and $9M is a LOT to pay for a second WR. On one hand, I don't see why a team with the best QB in the league would pay the most for a WR core - Rodgers can make it work with just about anyone. On the other hand, Ron Wolf said he didn't do enough to surround Favre with a solid supporting cast, mainly including the WRs ... so maybe it's worth it to splurge a bit on the offensive weapons.

But if they don't re-sign him, what the heck are they doing with $32M in cap space? Only ~$8M is needed for the draft class. Another $6-8M for Bulaga... still leaves $16M unspent, and not many other ways to spend it. Hayward isn't up for an extension yet, House isn't going to cost much to retain (if they even want to retain him), and there's not many free agents that fit the Packers needs.

I think they are hoping that players like Dez hit free agency so the market is saturated with WRs and Cobb's asking price is lowered, then they'll re-sign him for less than $8M. Seems like a dangerous game to play over ~$1-2M per year for one of the most explosive players the Packers have had play for them the last decade.

Edited by Phenomena

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Randall Cobb rumors: Packers to let WR test NFL free agency

http://www.bigcatcountry.com/2015/2/26/8114385/randall-cobb-rumors-contract-packers-nfl-free-agent-jaguars

I can't say I blame them - Cobb must not be relenting from his asking price, and $9M is a LOT to pay for a second WR. On one hand, I don't see why a team with the best QB in the league would pay the most for a WR core - Rodgers can make it work with just about anyone. On the other hand, Ron Wolf said he didn't do enough to surround Favre with a solid supporting cast, mainly including the WRs ... so maybe it's worth it to splurge a bit on the offensive weapons.

But if they don't re-sign him, what the heck are they doing with $32M in cap space? Only ~$8M is needed for the draft class. Another $6-8M for Bulaga... still leaves $16M unspent.

As said in the other thread on him...does anyone think this is anything more than posturing, likely be his agent?

It started as a small bullet point in LaC's free agent tidbits and will blow up. Seems typical for this time of year.

Just like Shields was gone...FA was about to start and no way the Packers would si....oh wait, they signed him.

The Jags? If he goes there for a little more than GB would offer him, he is a moron.

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Randall Cobb rumors: Packers to let WR test NFL free agency

http://www.bigcatcountry.com/2015/2/26/8114385/randall-cobb-rumors-contract-packers-nfl-free-agent-jaguars

I can't say I blame them - Cobb must not be relenting from his asking price, and $9M is a LOT to pay for a second WR. On one hand, I don't see why a team with the best QB in the league would pay the most for a WR core - Rodgers can make it work with just about anyone. On the other hand, Ron Wolf said he didn't do enough to surround Favre with a solid supporting cast, mainly including the WRs ... so maybe it's worth it to splurge a bit on the offensive weapons.

But if they don't re-sign him, what the heck are they doing with $32M in cap space? Only ~$8M is needed for the draft class. Another $6-8M for Bulaga... still leaves $16M unspent.

As said in the other thread on him...does anyone think this is anything more than posturing, likely be his agent?

It started as a small bullet point in LaC's free agent tidbits and will blow up. Seems typical for this time of year.

Just like Shields was gone...FA was about to start and no way the Packers would si....oh wait, they signed him.

The Jags? If he goes there for a little more than GB would offer him, he is a moron.

You are right .. we shouldn't worry care about all these teasers. It's probably posturing from both sides.

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Randall Cobb rumors: Packers to let WR test NFL free agency

http://www.bigcatcountry.com/2015/2/26/8114385/randall-cobb-rumors-contract-packers-nfl-free-agent-jaguars

I can't say I blame them - Cobb must not be relenting from his asking price, and $9M is a LOT to pay for a second WR. On one hand, I don't see why a team with the best QB in the league would pay the most for a WR core - Rodgers can make it work with just about anyone. On the other hand, Ron Wolf said he didn't do enough to surround Favre with a solid supporting cast, mainly including the WRs ... so maybe it's worth it to splurge a bit on the offensive weapons.

But if they don't re-sign him, what the heck are they doing with $32M in cap space? Only ~$8M is needed for the draft class. Another $6-8M for Bulaga... still leaves $16M unspent.

As said in the other thread on him...does anyone think this is anything more than posturing, likely be his agent?

It started as a small bullet point in LaC's free agent tidbits and will blow up. Seems typical for this time of year.

Just like Shields was gone...FA was about to start and no way the Packers would si....oh wait, they signed him.

The Jags? If he goes there for a little more than GB would offer him, he is a moron.

You are right .. we shouldn't worry care about all these teasers. It's probably posturing from both sides.

I think there is always a bit of worry when it comes to a talented guy like Cobb.

But when i hear Jax or Oak going after him...I almost laugh.

They better blow GB's offer completely out of the water (or what GB has stated is their range)

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The glaring weakness at ILB just became a black hole. The Packers are going to have to make multiple moves to fill the ILB positions. I would not be surprised if they drafted multiple and added one free agency. They are not going to waste Matthews' talent playing ILB rotations all year.

To be fair, we've had a glaring hole at ILB for several seasons now.

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Yeah Hawk just never got better than his rookie season.

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Yeah Hawk just never got better than his rookie season.

Just not a good linebacker. It is a cut that will actually make the defense better.

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Not sure about my thoughts on possibly re-signing Cobb. Guy is awesome, but he is going to command a ton of money and Packers already gave Jordy a big contract. With Davonte Adams showing flashes of being a ridiculous player I that offense, I think they have to let Cobb walk.

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Yeah Hawk just never got better than his rookie season.

Just not a good linebacker. It is a cut that will actually make the defense better.

Do guys who are not good start on contending NFL teams for 9 years?

Look, the guy was not great. Did not live up to being a top 5 pick.

But he was assignment sounds, called the defense, had the trust of the coaches and was well liked by anyone who knew him.

And started for 9 years.

To claim he was never better than his rookie year, or he was just not a good linebacker is complete crap.

The guy was a good, but not great player. Solid, but not spectacular. He is always judged by being a top 5 pick.

But regardless of what pick...how was it not a good investment in a draft pick.

How many other picks even in that first round have lasted as starters for 9 years?

How many other first round picks the Packers have had will be starters for 9 years? Rodgers...thats it...(unless they sign Bulaga...but he has missed more time than Hawk in a shorter career than Hawk ever did).

I think too many people judge him on the expectations of a top 5 pick...ratther than realizing several years in that when he was drafted didn't matter anymore.

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I judge him on his performance, which has been very bad the last several years. He was not good. Not disparaging him as a person, he appears to be well respected. And one has to wonder if that is why TT couldn't pull the trigger and cut him 3 years ago.

pack just cut 2 inside linebackers. And the linebacker play will be improved next year.

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Yeah Hawk just never got better than his rookie season.

Just not a good linebacker. It is a cut that will actually make the defense better.

Do guys who are not good start on contending NFL teams for 9 years?

Look, the guy was not great. Did not live up to being a top 5 pick.

But he was assignment sounds, called the defense, had the trust of the coaches and was well liked by anyone who knew him.

And started for 9 years.

To claim he was never better than his rookie year, or he was just not a good linebacker is complete crap.

The guy was a good, but not great player. Solid, but not spectacular. He is always judged by being a top 5 pick.

But regardless of what pick...how was it not a good investment in a draft pick.

How many other picks even in that first round have lasted as starters for 9 years?

How many other first round picks the Packers have had will be starters for 9 years? Rodgers...thats it...(unless they sign Bulaga...but he has missed more time than Hawk in a shorter career than Hawk ever did).

I think too many people judge him on the expectations of a top 5 pick...ratther than realizing several years in that when he was drafted didn't matter anymore.

I'm not judging based on draft status but Hawk was never what I would consider to be a good LB. I feel he was adequate at best. He consistent ranked in the bottom half of MLBs and went almost 2 full seasons without a forced turnover...something unheard of from an every week starter at that position. He was durable, I'll give him that but I won't give him credit for calling the defense which, for the most part wasn't very good over his 9 years here. Guy built up tackle numbers due to the nature of his position and being on a bad defense that was on the field a lot during his tenure. He just didn't make very many impact plays. I'm not saying he's terrible but he wasn't good either. To me he is the very definition of just a guy. Edited by Pipes
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Yeah Hawk just never got better than his rookie season.

Just not a good linebacker. It is a cut that will actually make the defense better.

Do guys who are not good start on contending NFL teams for 9 years?

Look, the guy was not great. Did not live up to being a top 5 pick.

But he was assignment sounds, called the defense, had the trust of the coaches and was well liked by anyone who knew him.

And started for 9 years.

To claim he was never better than his rookie year, or he was just not a good linebacker is complete crap.

The guy was a good, but not great player. Solid, but not spectacular. He is always judged by being a top 5 pick.

But regardless of what pick...how was it not a good investment in a draft pick.

How many other picks even in that first round have lasted as starters for 9 years?

How many other first round picks the Packers have had will be starters for 9 years? Rodgers...thats it...(unless they sign Bulaga...but he has missed more time than Hawk in a shorter career than Hawk ever did).

I think too many people judge him on the expectations of a top 5 pick...ratther than realizing several years in that when he was drafted didn't matter anymore.

He shouldn't have started more than 5-6 years. Thus, I don't really put any stock in him being a 9-year starter.

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Hawk was a sound player. Made the tackles that were asked of him to make. He didn't create the fumbles that were "expected" or the pressure on the QB but I don't think he was ever asked to cause pressure either.

He was a solid pick and played well. He was not flashy nor was he a trouble maker. Green Bay and their fans should appreciate that.

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Yeah Hawk just never got better than his rookie season.

Just not a good linebacker. It is a cut that will actually make the defense better.

Hawk was a good Packer. Frustratingly Un-Athletic (compared to other NFL caliber LB's) but he was in ona boatload of tackles and he called the D plays. He'll probably play a couple more years then get into coaching. Packer Fans Wish Him well.

If you were Ted, who would you try to plug in that spot? Can you imagine if CJ Mosely would have fallen just a bit farther? FN Ozzie!

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We need a 260 pound animal in the middle. Tired of seeing the Pack run on.

Wee need a true NT...260 lb animal would be greT, til we see another TE running wide open in the middle of the field.

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Yeah Hawk just never got better than his rookie season.

Just not a good linebacker. It is a cut that will actually make the defense better.

Hawk was a good Packer. Frustratingly Un-Athletic (compared to other NFL caliber LB's) but he was in ona boatload of tackles and he called the D plays. He'll probably play a couple more years then get into coaching. Packer Fans Wish Him well.

If you were Ted, who would you try to plug in that spot? Can you imagine if CJ Mosely would have fallen just a bit farther? FN Ozzie!

Mosely's good but I'm happy with the Ha Ha pick. I think their safety play in 2013 was worse than the inside LB play of 2014 or any year for that matter.

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We need a 260 pound animal in the middle. Tired of seeing the Pack run on.

Wee need a true NT...260 lb animal would be greT, til we see another TE running wide open in the middle of the field.
Wilfork types are harder to come by than MLBs, but that works too.

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A pretty good look at where the Packers stand regarding their free agents and the salary cap:

http://www.packersnews.com/story/sports/nfl/packers/dougherty/2015/02/26/could-cobb-become-too-pricey-for-packers/24092457/

Could Cobb become too pricey for Packers?
1403621079000-Pete-Dougherty.jpg Pete Dougherty, Press-Gazette Media 9:22 p.m. EST February 26, 2015

The reports on upcoming free agency are trickling in and suggesting the Green Bay Packers could have a problem re-signing Randall Cobb.

Bill Williamson of ESPN.com says the Oakland Raiders, with salary-cap room galore, are expected to make a run at the 24-year-old receiver who will hit the free agent market in about two weeks. Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com reported the Packers think that Cobb's market could get "out of hand" and are prepared to move on if that's the case.

Such difficulties would be a surprise and could drastically alter the Packers' plans for March and April, because going into the offseason Cobb appeared to be their highest priority to re-sign. His departure would move receiver to or near the top of the draft needs list. It also would improve the chances the Packers would re-sign right tackle Bryan Bulaga.

But it's not a given Cobb's market will blow up. And regardless, general manager Ted Thompson will have the cap room and cash to re-sign Cobb and Bulaga, several other of his own free agents and a player or two from another team as well. That's if he chooses, though, because Thompson also places a premium on maintaining the team's salary hierarchy and sticking with his assigned value to players when deciding how far to go in negotiations.

Last week the NFLPA projected this year's salary cap to be at least $143 million, so we now know how much cap room Thompson has to work with this offseason. After cutting A.J. Hawk on Wednesday, the Packers have about $32 million in cap room, according to data obtained from sources with access to NFL salary information. According to OverTheCap.com, that puts the Packers at Nos. 7 or 8 for most cap room in the league.

They also have 11 unrestricted free agents and three restricted free agents, plus their 2015 draft class, and any players they might sign from other teams when free agency opens in March. Yes, Thompson is a good bet to dip into free agency this year, at least for a mid- to low-level inside linebacker to compete for a starting job with the player or players he drafts at that position.

Thompson's list of free agents includes four who will command high salaries: Cobb, Bulaga and cornerbacks Davon House and Tramon Williams. It's hard to see the GM re-signing more than three of them, at most, and to estimate how much money he'll have to work with on those deals it's instructive to go through some of his other impending cap costs.

We'll start with the other free agents Thompson is likely to re-sign.

Last year, he retained defensive lineman B.J. Raji for $4 million, and after Raji missed all last season because of a torn biceps, the best guess is the Packers can get him even cheaper on a one-year deal this season. Perhaps for around $2 million.

Defensive lineman Letroy Guion's recent marijuana arrest kills his value on the open market, so he's probably a minimum-salary player now, which means the Packers probably can re-sign him for the seven-year veteran minimum of $870,000. With the veteran's minimum salary benefit, he'd count only $515,000 against the cap, with up to $80,000 in signing bonus allowed as well, though he might not even have the leverage for a bonus.

Same for fullback John Kuhn and defensive back Jarrett Bush, who are eligible for the $870,000 salary and up to $80,000 bonus but would count only $515,000 plus the bonus against the cap.

Backup quarterbacks Scott Tolzien and Matt Flynn will be minimum-salary type players also, though it's unclear whether the Packers will re-sign both. If so, Tolzien ($745,000 plus bonus) and Flynn ($870,000 but with the veteran minimum benefit of $515,000 cap charge plus bonus) combined still will cost less than $1.5 million on this year's cap. And if the Packers sign only one, it will be half that.

Of the Packers' three restricted free agents, offensive lineman Don Barclay and safety Sean Richardson probably will get the low tender, which is projected to be about $1.5 million. That would give the Packers the right to match any deal they sign with another team. It's hard to see receiver Jarrett Boykin getting a tender after the drop-off in his play last season, but the Packers could re-sign him for the fourth-year minimum of $660,000.

So just for the sake of argument, let's assume the Packers re-sign Guion, Kuhn and Bush for minimum deals ($515,000 cap charge) plus both backup quarterbacks at a combined $1.5 million cap charge, and handle the restricted tenders as suggested ($3.66 million combined). That's a combined $6.7 million, lowering their cap room to around $25.3 million.

Their rookie class will cost another $4.5 million, though for the offseason only the top 51 salaries count on the cap, and only the first four picks probably will rank among the top 51 when they sign. So the rookie class will count only about $3 million more.

That lowers the cap room to about $22.3 million for Thompson and his cap manager, team vice president Russ Ball, to re-sign Cobb, Bulaga, Williams and House, and any free agents from other teams.

As for guessing who's back and who's not among those four, I still think the Packers will get something done with Cobb before free agency starts, and they'll retain Bulaga as well. But La Canfora's report on Cobb gives pause.

House and Williams are even tougher predictions. House is the younger of the two (26 in July), and the Packers like him. But I'm not convinced they like him $5 million to $7 million a year, which he just might command on the open market.

Williams probably can be had for less than that – maybe $3.5 million a year or so – though the worry there is he turns 32 next month, and at that age his play could slip dramatically in one offseason. I'm inclined to think he has some Donald Driver in him, which means enough springiness in his legs for another good season or two. But that's not a given.

My guess is Williams is back and House signs a big contract with another team. If both leave, then Casey Hayward becomes an outside cornerback, Micah Hyde the full-time nickel back, and cornerback shoots way up the draft priority list.

Re-signing Cobb and Bulaga will be much more expensive.

With Cobb, the contract to look at is Jordy Nelson's. Last August, Nelson signed a new deal that by NFLPA calculations averages $9.762 million. But that's counting only the new money and four years added to the one year he had left his deal. In reality, Nelson signed a new five-year contract that averages $8.51 million and included an $11.5 million signing bonus and $13.5 million in first-year pay.

Though Nelson is more important to the Packers' offense because of his ability to make plays down field, Cobb has a good chance of topping that deal. In fact, Thompson should be willing to pay Cobb a little more without worry of locker-room fallout.

Nelson opted for the security of a contract extension — you can't blame him for that — rather than risking serious injury by playing out the season. If Cobb surpasses him on the Packers' pay scale because he has more leverage after taking the risk, well, that's the price Nelson paid. He should have no beef.

Cobb probably would be worth re-signing in the range of $9 million a year because he's uncommonly young (24) for a free agent and a big part of the Packers' offense, even if his size (5-10, 192 pounds) leaves him susceptible to injury. If the price gets much higher than that, though, I suspect Thompson would drop out.

But even if he re-signs Cobb in the $9 million range, Thompson could do it without taking that big a bite from the $22.3 million we're projecting he has in cap room. He could structure the deal similar to Nelson's, which pays $16.55 million in '14 and '15 combined, yet counted only $5.925 million on the '14 cap and $4.6 million on the '15 cap.

Bulaga is the best right tackle on the open market, so he'll likely become one of and maybe the highest-paid right tackle in the league. That player for now is Indianapolis' Gosder Cherilus, whose five-year deal averages $7 million a year and included $15.5 million guaranteed. One longtime agent I talked to at the NFL scouting combine last week predicted Bulaga's average will top Cherilus, but that the guarantee will be less because of Bulaga's season-ending injuries (hip, knee) in '12 and '13

With the cap projected to rise from at least $143 million this year to as high as $160 million in 2016, according to a report on ProFootballTalk.com, Thompson could opt for light cap charges this season with Cobb, Bulaga or both, and still have $12 million to $15 million in cap room for his dealings with Williams or House and any free agents he'd pursue at, say, inside linebacker.

The Packers' don't have any other obvious candidates for cap relief now that they've cut Hawk and Brad Jones. If Thompson needs more cap room, he could convert some of the 2015 pay for Aaron Rodgers, Clay Matthews or Julius Peppers into a prorated signing bonus.

But that doesn't appear likely. Thompson and Ball like to pay as they go, and they should have the cap room this year and in the near future to stay on that path.

— pdougher@pressgazettemedia.com and follow him on Twitter @PeteDougherty.

Edited by KingPrawn

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We need a 260 pound animal in the middle. Tired of seeing the Pack run on.

Wee need a true NT...260 lb animal would be greT, til we see another TE running wide open in the middle of the field.
Wilfork types are harder to come by than MLBs, but that works too.

True...just worried that we are so vulnerable covering the middle...if we had a 260lb bruiser MLB that would not improve.

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That article states the Packers retained Raji. Didn't they let him hit the market, and he found it cool and returned? I guess technically that is retaining a player but kind of misleading.

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When the Packers selected Hawk I very much approved of the pick. I was wrong. While he was a solid citizen and a reliable guy, things not to be taken for granted, far too many of his tackles occurred 5 yards to 9 yards down field, and far too few occurred within 2 yards of the line of scrimmage, or in the offensive backfield. Thanks for the service, and the citizenship, and good luck in your future.

Edited by Ditkaless Wonders

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Would rather Pack spend money on a defender like Dan Williams than resigning Cobb for more than 8 mil per.

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I hope that pack stay away from Julius Thomas if denver doesn't sign him. Some not so nice things being reported about him from teammates.

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