The Increasing Salary Cap Won't Fix The Packers Budget Problems

The salary cap increased dramatically this year and will continue to rise thanks to the new TV deals. But it won't be enough to save the Packers from their aggressive spending over the last two years. 

The Packers have been more aggressive than ever this offseason and pushed out a lot of future cap hits to try for a Super Bowl now.

They are clearly in win-now mode. We don't know if it will work, but we do know that the Packers are gonna be in a world of hurt when the cap hits catch up with them. 

There's two ways of looking at this.

The first is simply their relative standing among their league peers.

The Packers are pushing more cap hits out into the future than any other team. That means that when the time comes for the Packers to re-sign guys like Rashan Gary, Darnell Savage, Elgton Jenkins, Eric Stokes, and (maybe) Jordan Love, that every other team in the team league will have more money than the Packers do to try to sign them.

And no, they can't keep just pushing more and more money out. Once money is moved, it can't be moved again, so you will hit a limit where you run out of moves (or money).

Don't bet on everyone taking a hometown discount to stay in Green Bay, either - just ask Davante Adams

The Packers have made a choice to value a chance at winning now over the ability to compete in bidding wars in the future.

The second way of looking at how the Packers will be hurting is to view it from an inflationary perspective.

Just look at the contract Dolphins cornerback Xavien Howard signed yesterday.

Prior to that deal, the three highest-paid cornerbacks in the league - Jalen Ramsey ($20M), Marshon Lattimore ($19.52M), and Marlon Humphrey ($19.5M) - were all making within $500k of each other.

Howard's new deal will pay him an average of $25.345M per year, creating the largest pay gap between the highest and second-highest paid cornerbacks ever.

Why such a huge gap?

Is Xavien Howard really 27% better than any other cornerback in the league?

No.

The deals that Ramsey, Lattimore, and Humphrey signed were all negotiated before the unveiling of the news that the NFL TV deal will make the cap explode (for more information on how the salary cap is set and how it works, I recommend this book - I'm a big fan of the author).

With the salary cap increasing by $25.7M this year (which is larger than any two year increase in the history of the NFL salary cap), and more increases on the way, players want bigger deals. Jaire Alexander isn't gonna sign for $21M just because it would have made him the highest-paid cornerback before the cap went up - he's gonna wanna get paid at the new wage scale, too.

A lot of fans seemed to think that the cap increase would just let the Packers "catch up" after pushing contracts into the future. The idea being that if the Packers pushed a bunch of money out into future caps, that the increase in future caps will make up for it. But that line of thinking ignores one key factor: those cap increases are just going to make contracts grow ever faster... and the Packers will be in an even bigger hole.

We got to see how fast the markets catch up in the wide receiver arena recently, too. DeAndre Hopkins had a silly, market-wrecking contract making $27.5M when no other receiver was even making $21M. Then, the Raiders made a big trade for Davante Adams and paid him $28M per year. Days later, the Dolphins traded for Tyreek Hill and paid him $30M per year.

Suddenly, Hopkins's market anomaly contract looks quaint. And just wait until guys like Justin Jefferson and Ja'Marr Chase start looking for new deals.

Contracts are going to be skyrocketing at an unforeseen rate across the board. Cornerbacks and Wide Receivers are already getting more. The other positions will blow up soon enough. It will take more and more money to re-sign key players or even think of bringing a free agent in from the outside.

And the Packers will be at a self-imposed disadvantage. 

 

Bruce Irons has played, coached, and studied football for decades. Best-selling author of books such as A Fan's Guide To Understanding The NFL Draft, A Fan's Guide To Understanding The NFL Salary Cap, and A Fan's Guide To NFL Free Agency Hits And Misses, Bruce contributes to CheeseHeadTV and PackersForTheWin.com.

Follow Bruce Irons on Twitter at @BruceIronsNFL.

 

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6 points

Comments (90)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 03, 2022 at 07:19 am

TJ Watt got $28M AAV, and his are real numbers. Gary is not quite in Watt territory, but he is probably pushing $20M AAV at present.

I had been thinking GB would pay Jaire $22.5M AAV, but unless Xavien Howard's agent exaggerated the numbers (supposedly $25M AAV), that seems like halcyon days now.

FWIW, I had Davante's real AAV at $22.3M and Tyreek Hills at $24.17M. Maybe Davante will be worth $35M in 2024 and 2025 if the cap skyrockets and he remains elite since he has little in the way of dead money and no guaranteed money left in those years. Hill had $40M cash in the last year of this deal to push the AAV higher.

The cap did increase from $182.5M to $208.2M, a $25.7M increase. I don't think that was due to the TV deals. We have not seen too much of that effect yet. The cap was $198M in 2020, and had been increasing $10M each season. So a $208M cap in 2021 (instead of the $182.5M we got) and a $218M cap for this year (2022) seemed foreseeable.

The cap went back up mostly because there were fans back in the seats, and in part due to the extra regular season game and extra playoff game. There should be a nice increase in 2023 (OTC estimates $225M) and a big increase for the 2024 season. The increases are being suppressed because the owners are being paid back for the loan to the salary cap made for the 2020 season (cap probably should have been $150M or so). So, probably $10M per year less in 2022, 2023 and 2024 than that would have been.

If OTC is correct about the cap being $225M in 2023, that would be a $17M increase. Those who read my cap tracker know that the Packers pushed a little over $17M in cap into 2023 already. All of that may not be technically "dead money" since some of the players will still be on the team, but it is cap for service in 2022.

So, the effective cap increase will be slight. The market will be up. Sounds like my salary increase versus current inflation.

Edit: Most teams push cap into future years. It isn't unusual, except to the extent that the Packers did it in consecutive years. And yes, big increases in the cap will take the sting out of things. Relative to the rest of the league, not so much, but large increases will allow a smart GM with tons of draft picks to navigate the shoals.

10 points
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wildbill's picture

April 03, 2022 at 01:55 pm

Very nice breakdown, thanks once again

2 points
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GTPack's picture

April 03, 2022 at 06:56 am

Reading this article reinforces the practice of having more players on their first contracts because good veterans and especially elite players at skill positions will require most of the cap space. The Packers probably need to keep all of their draft choices for this year for this reason. I could see them signing and trading Jaire Alexander now that they’ve signed Douglas. A team can’t have too many players paid at or near the top of the league as it’s not sustainable with the cap.

9 points
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BruceIrons's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:09 am

Drafting well is more important than ever when free agent salaries continue to skyrocket.

4 points
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murf7777's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:16 am

Bruce, I'm not sure that is true. Are FA's getting any more of the pie than before? Since FA started in the 90's and the Packers signed one of the first BIG ones in Reggie White I'd be curious if the %'s are really that much different.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 04, 2022 at 01:43 am

IIRC, White signed for 4 years, $17M, or $4.25M when the salary cap was $34.608M, so that is 12.28% of the cap. 12.28% of $208.2M is $25.57M AAV in today's cap dollars. Myles Garrett is at $25M, Bosa at $27M and Watt at $28M.

However, he signed in April of 1993, and there was no cap limit, so I cited the cap limit for 1994. Another way to look at it is $4.25M made him the 3rd highest paid player in the NFL behind Elway ($4.75M) and Marino ($4.43M).

Two final points. 1993 was White's age 32 season. Watt, Garrett and Bosa are all in the prime, mid-twenties. Also, White got 53% of the total value of his contract in the first year. Even Aaron Rodgers only got 49% back in 2018, albeit, the numbers were so much higher at $66M of $134M. Anyway, White's deal had a fantastic cash flow for the times.

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DocHoliday's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:37 am

Good point.
It explains why Belichek stockpiled draft picks and would sign vets near end of career at discounts.

2 points
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LLCHESTY's picture

April 03, 2022 at 11:34 am

The years he had all those picks weren't SB winning ones for the most part. He had a streak of some pretty bad drafting in there.

3 points
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GTPack's picture

April 03, 2022 at 06:56 am

Reading this article reinforces the practice of having more players on their first contracts because good veterans and especially elite players at skill positions will require most of the cap space. The Packers probably need to keep all of their draft choices for this year for this reason. I could see them signing and trading Jaire Alexander now that they’ve signed Douglas. A team can’t have too many players paid at or near the top of the league as it’s not sustainable with the cap.

1 points
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GTPack's picture

April 03, 2022 at 06:56 am

Reading this article reinforces the practice of having more players on their first contracts because good veterans and especially elite players at skill positions will require most of the cap space. The Packers probably need to keep all of their draft choices for this year for this reason. I could see them signing and trading Jaire Alexander now that they’ve signed Douglas. A team can’t have too many players paid at or near the top of the league as it’s not sustainable with the cap.

1 points
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GTPack's picture

April 03, 2022 at 06:56 am

Reading this article reinforces the practice of having more players on their first contracts because good veterans and especially elite players at skill positions will require most of the cap space. The Packers probably need to keep all of their draft choices for this year for this reason. I could see them signing and trading Jaire Alexander now that they’ve signed Douglas. A team can’t have too many players paid at or near the top of the league as it’s not sustainable with the cap.

-1 points
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Johnblood27's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:31 am

You can sure say that again...

10 points
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PatrickGB's picture

April 03, 2022 at 07:23 am

So what is the better alternative?

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 03, 2022 at 07:52 am

TL/DR: There isn't really one. This is the reality. Now, you don't need me to expand, but my long-winded response is below.

Being smart with their draft choices. When they do bring in a player (UFA) be sure to hit on that player. No Kirkseys, more Campbells, Wagners, and Douglases'.

A big increase would help, if not relatively. But at least Gute could look a tier above the bargain bin if needed and move around some. Otherwise, when AR retires, there will be a re-tooling and maybe a rebuild with a fire sale. That was largely decided when they extended AR.

2 points
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BruceIrons's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:12 am

It's just about choices.

Ted Thompson chose to keep the budget balanced year to year. Brian Gutekunst is choosing to push money out to sign more guys in the short term.

Ted won a Super Bowl with his approach. Gutekunst hasn't won one yet, but I think he's put together multiple teams that were more than capable. If the team does win one, everyone will agree it was worth it. If they don't win one before Rodgers leaves, it will be looked at as a massive failure.

Either way, the pain is coming and the tv deal won't save them.

7 points
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stockholder's picture

April 03, 2022 at 07:33 am

Save money at the Pump. We're over pumping the value of are own. Unless they produce the awards. Stretching of the dollar is what we need. The average Salary of the position must be enforced. Money won't stop players from leaving. And the draft is the way out of this. TT knew that. Cheap Ted! He let guards go in their prime. Saving the pennies for that football player. Who he could build around. Youth brings game changers. They're the calvary for an aging team. And the next building block for the future. We panic if we lose a player. We over -pay the position. And when they get hurt. The money just went down the drain. This shouldn't be a popularity contest. TT wouldn't over- pay the OL. And if you wanted to be the highest paid guy. He didn't need you. Because he knew you could get hurt. He hated injuries. He wouldn't draft them. He wanted the packers to get their moneys worth. If you keep putting money in it. You'll never afford the upgrade. Gutey needs to draft the calvary.

-3 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:29 am

And yet he drafted injury prone Justin Harrell with his first pick in 2007. He was good with the salary cap I will give you that.

Just curious who you think Gute overpaid for? His free agent signings have been solid and he has let expensive players like Bulaga, Lindsey,MVS, Z Smith walk.

He got great value for Adams all things considered.

I hope he does not trade draft picks for an expensive WR. This draft will determine how painful the eventual salary cap rebuild will be in a few years IMO.

2 points
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stockholder's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:54 am

Bahk! He over paid for Bahk. TT would have moved on. Spriggs became the Bust. (But TT was sick.) Adams return was the best thing Gute's done! ( Since his first trade down with NO.). But would have Rodgers returned ? Probably not. Still he should have waited! I want Watson, Burks, or Tolbert. If Gutey wants out of Cap hell. He'll go for McBride. (Which means a trade down.) Because Tonyan, wants money. Degura can't catch above his Head. And McBride will be just as good as Hockenson.

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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:22 am

Gute has done a nice job the last couple of drafts so let's see what he does with all his draft capital this year.

I expect a lot of maneuvering by Gute this in the early rounds to get players he wants.

3 points
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BirdDogUni's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:32 am

"I expect a lot of maneuvering by Gute this in the early rounds to get players he wants."

That's my biggest fear. He moves around and wastes draft capitol on the guys he wants, instead of being patient and taking the BPA.

If Gutey does a lot of maneuvering, it better be down and adding draft capitol instead of wasting it to move up, IMHO.

If Gutey can get a team to move up to 22 and we were to get a high 2nd round pick plus some, I would be all for it.

I just hate it when he wastes picks to move up.

4 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:59 am

Ignoring the Love pick that every fan seems to hate, I don't know he has had a couple of good drafts the last couple of years so I trust his judgement.

I think you can actually have too many picks as it is tough to keep 11 rookies on your roster so trading a few to improve his draft postion for a player he loves is not a bad strategy I think.

5 points
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LLCHESTY's picture

April 03, 2022 at 11:37 am

How many years have we been saying? You'd think he'd listen by now. At least trade the 3rds instead of 4ths!

2 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:18 am

Not sure I agree he overpaid for Bahk as elite and arguably the best pass blocking LT in the NFL. Elite LT's are rare and command big money in the NFL. If Bahk had been allowed to go FA teams would have been tripping over themselves to pay him what GB did.

Just ask Joe Burrows about not having an elite LT or OL in general to protect him. Jonas Williams is decent but he allowed 8 sacks last year and Burrows was the most Sacked QB in the NFL. Look at all the $$$ Cincy spent this off season to remake their OL.

If any OL position deserves big money it is an elite LT.

4 points
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jannes bjornson's picture

April 03, 2022 at 02:35 pm

Preach it !

0 points
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croatpackfan's picture

April 03, 2022 at 04:20 pm

Packers overpaid Aaron Rodgers and that overpaid is huge. He had 11 years to go back to SB and what Packers fans has. Just theit hearts broken at least 5 times if not more. Only common in all those 11 years was and is Aaron Rodgers.

Packers gave him $50 mill per year for his role in braking fans hearts.

They overpaid David Bakhtiari because of Crying Diva, they brought WR who should be retired, they brought him super teams and what he did. He choked in every of those 11 years in post season. He might be gifted like no QB ever, but he did not know how to use that God given talent.

Take of that $50 mill (and by liar and choker that is team friendly deal) Packers suddenly have very nice future.

1 points
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dblbogey's picture

April 03, 2022 at 06:04 pm

Ouch!
Disagree about Bakh but I kind of hoped they'd trade Rodgers. Imagine the draft capital this year and next, a couple of 1's and a 2 at least, along with the 1 and 2 for Davante, along with the cap savings. It might make for an ugly 2022 season, but a quick rebuild. It would have been interesting.

1 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:40 pm

No one forced the Packers to give Rodgers his current contract or his prior contract. They have chosen to go all in for the next 2-3 seasons. Can't take that approach without Rodgers.

The choice was go all in with Rodgers for the next 2-3 seasons or trade Rodgers and go into an uncertain future.
Murphy has decided to go all in before he retires. he's driving the train to try and get one more SB before he goes off into the sunset. The die is cast. It's up to Gute and MLF now. Thanks, Since '61

2 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:28 am

Duplicate deleted

0 points
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LLCHESTY's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:39 am

Maybe try a few less periods and few more commas?

2 points
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stockholder's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:58 am

Maybe.

1 points
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Hammwf's picture

April 04, 2022 at 12:07 am

Tt keep the organization down for years everyone wanted him gone period. You don’t win championships though drafting those days are long gone with the NFL turning into NBA it’s a now or never approach. If you are not first you are last. I rather win a Super Bowl and be mediocre for a decade then constantly go to playoffs and lose every year.

1 points
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NickPerry's picture

April 03, 2022 at 07:48 am

A Few things...The Packers MUST absolutely NAIL the first 4, preferably 5 picks in this years draft. I will be vital to the the Packers ability to compete not just this year and next, but also for the next 3 or 4 years or so, while they hopefully try to get this under control.

Right now the Packers have Alexander, Gary, Jenkins, and Savage all coming up for extensions. There's probably no way the Packers can keep everybody, and I'd imagine is year's draft will tell us much of what the plan might be. Right now that Rasul Douglas signing is looking pretty damn good!

In 2023 the cap is expected to be between $220 and $225 million. In 2024 it's expected to jump to $260 million or so. I'll be really curious exactly what the plan will be in 2024. I think you can pretty much bank on it Rodgers and Bakhtiari will be gone. Yes, they'll have dead money, but you'll also save $35 million or so moving on.

SO, as we all already know, this is a TWO YEAR WINDOW. In 2022 they have to try and win it with God knows who at the WR position. This is EXACTLY why I think GB needs to draft two WR in the first 59 picks, and probably another in the 4th. With those other two picks in the first 60, they must decide between Edge, Safety, Tackle, and CB. Olave, Williams, Burks, at 22. If not then maybe Sky Moore at 28 (Love that dude). I have NO idea where Watson will go, but I think Perkins, Tolbert, and Pierce would all be solid 2nd round selections.

All I know is I can't WAIT for this years draft!!!

14 points
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stockholder's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:21 am

14 teams need WRs. If they're as good as advertised. The top ten won't make #53. ///// We've Also seen TT; try and get a Top TE in his drafts. Nobody would let him trade up in rd.2. Gutey must make the right moves. And it better be at WR. I hope they're Tall and fast like James Lofton.

-1 points
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DocHoliday's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:46 am

If 14 teams draft WR in the first 2 rounds, there will be a number of GMs looking for jobs in a few years.

WR is important, but without a QB and line to protect the QB, they won’t have near the impact for a teams future. Look at Detroit drafted top WRs three years in a row. Millen was fired for his incompetence.

6 points
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DocHoliday's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:46 am

If 14 teams draft WR in the first 2 rounds, there will be a number of GMs looking for jobs in a few years.

WR is important, but without a QB and line to protect the QB, they won’t have near the impact for a teams future. Look at Detroit drafted top WRs three years in a row. Millen was fired for his incompetence.

2 points
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murf7777's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:09 am

NP, keep in mind, the first round carries 50% bust rate and if you are at the end of the 1st round that number goes to around 65% based on an article I just read. It is based on 10 years and whether a player is a starter. Other parameters are there, and I won't bore you with the details.

With that said, there is no way, unless Gutey hits the pot of gold over the rainbow, nails all of his first 4 picks. Out of the first 4, if he hits 2, he is hitting better than the average.

Of course, it's unrealistic, but we can all hope for the best.

7 points
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dobber's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:24 pm

...but when the chips get pushed in the way the Packers have done regarding the cap, it requires that you hit (and continue to hit) at an unsustainable rate in the draft to keep the roster afloat.

5 points
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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 04, 2022 at 02:08 am

I'm not going to do the research to quantify it. I would agree with the notion that the first round carries a 50% underwhelmed rate, but most first rounders can be back-ups at worst, and usually low-end starters to rotational guys.

0 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:42 am

Great post NP. I agree this draft is critical in determining how painful a post Rodgers rebuild will eventually be.

This is a strong draft for WR's so I imagine we could get a stud with one of our first rounders and a decent prospect with one of the #2's if the value is there. Or maybe a trade up in rd 2 as we have plenty of draft capital and it would be tough to find roster space for all those draft picks

GB has been pretty successful finding value in later rounds so there is hope after day one that we draft some good players to take over when they start losing expensive FA's down the road.

2 points
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Savage57's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:03 am

I believe it was former Giants GM George Young who said, "I've never seen someone play better because they were getting paid more."

Overly simplistic perhaps, but that rationale prevents things like Nick PIRry from happening.

6 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:08 pm

Savage George Young’s comment is spot on. For years George Steinbrenner threw all kinds of money at free agents for the Yankees. Most of which never reached the level of play for the salary they were given.

The same applies to the NFL and other sports as well.
Thanks, Since ‘61

2 points
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oceanstrength's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:03 am

I disagree, everyone is in the same boat. If they aren't, they aren't winning. NFL revenue is out distancing salaries. That is basic supply and demand. The NFL isnt printing money, people are paying them. The interest people have in reading your article is proof of the economic health of the industry.
Doomsday predictors have never been right, but if and when thy ultimately are, then everybody is still in the same boat.
Don't kid yourself, Packers are way, WAY ahead of the game.

4 points
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Rarescope's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:07 am

I don’t think we had to let Adam’s go because he wouldn’t take a home town discount. We had to let him go because he had is heart set on playing somewhere else. What it would have taken for him to have a change of heart was I’m sure simply not worth it, independent of salary cap issues.

4 points
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murf7777's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:13 am

I believe we had to let him go because of getting a return from a soon to be 30 year old taking 10-15% or so of your salary cap. The risk of injury and declining abilities is increased greatly after 30.

Also, when you figure in a 1st and 2nd round draft pick and 20M in SC money this year alone that value is greater than his contributions. Keeping in mind, we were 7-0 without Adams in the line-up.

5 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:48 am

Not to mention the cap money saved allowed them the ability to resign critical FA's. We also have cap space to possibly sign a cheap FA WR with some gas in the tank.

4 points
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dobber's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:27 pm

If all reports of the Packers matching Vegas' contract bid are correct, the Packers didn't let him go: he refused to stay. I think there's a huge difference in those two statements.

In the end, Vegas helped the Packers chew their leg out of a bear trap of their own making.

5 points
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Duneslick's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:29 pm

GB did not let him go. He did not want to play in GB and wanted to go to the Raiders. Davante made the decision.

5 points
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murf7777's picture

April 03, 2022 at 02:20 pm

So the media says or maybe he just didn’t like being tagged.

-2 points
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Rarescope's picture

April 04, 2022 at 12:09 pm

I don't think that management is so out of touch that they think they can tag a player into playing that doesn't want to. My take is that it's simply a negotiating tool to gain some leverage. Seems to have worked out fairly well for us (assuming draft picks work out of course).

0 points
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Rarescope's picture

April 04, 2022 at 12:08 pm

Absolutely, nice comment Duneslick. So many fans seem to assume that management can just do whatever they want with players in the NFL. If nothing else, Antonio Brown has shown us you can't make a player play that doesn't want to play!

0 points
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Handsback's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:11 am

This is the win now issue. Green Bay has 2 years to win the SB, after that its rebuild with rookies and inexpensive free agents.
This year's draft is very pivotal because they will have (hopefully) 5 players that will make an impact on the team and still be cheap when the debt collector comes....If you don't like the board, it may be wise to trade a number one for next year's 1 + just for future cheaper players.
You have to pay that rebuild price sooner or later. Thank goodness for the Adams trade.

4 points
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stockholder's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:22 am

The problem was the pick of Love. Thank You Aaron Rodgers.

-1 points
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stockholder's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:23 am

There's No such thing as a bad board. Only a bad pick.

0 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 11:12 am

And I would argue Love was not a bad pick at the time. Maybe not optimal considering the need for a WR but Rodgers stats had been declining for several years so it looked like he may have been on the downside of his career. If it had continued down he would have been an expensive player to keep paying.

I think it was smart planning to get a young QB to groom like Thompson did when he drafted Rodgers.

All the experts seem to agree Love is talented but we don't know what we have yet due to his lack of playing time.

If nothing else it seemed to motivate Rodgers again so the pick was worth that if nothing else.

We will see how the Love pick pans out over the next couple of years unless Gute gets an offer he can't refuse before the draft and trade him for another high pick.

3 points
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murf7777's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:22 am

I agree we have a two-year window and that is why I wouldn't trade into next year. Many rookies take a 2nd year jump and if you trade into next year and if you only have a two-year window before the rebuild you didn't get the value of the 2nd year jump. I did an interesting project of trading all picks out of the first round, into the 2nd and 3rd and here are the results. Keep in mind, WR's bust rate doesn't drop much in the 2nd round vs the 1st. We might think the 1st rounders are much better, but the numbers prove otherwise.

35 - Treylon Burks, WR
50 - Kenyon Green OG A&M
53 - Boye Mafe Edge Minnesota
59 - Christian Watson, WR North Dakota State
62 - DeMarvin Leal, DL A&M
66 - Skyy Moore, WR
69 - Kyler Gordan CB Washington
90 - Quay Walker LB Georgia
92 - Jeremy Rucker TE OSU
132 - Nick cross S Maryland
228 - Jalen Wydermeyer, TE
249 - Logan Bruss, OT WISCONSIN

Very interesting, if you can find the trade partners, the talent you can accumulate to try and Nail 2 -4 starters and/or major contributors.

1 points
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stockholder's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:25 am

Good Luck with this. Never Happen.

1 points
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murf7777's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:10 am

Very true Stockholder, it was just a fun exercise to see how many picks I could accumulate in the 2nd and 3rd round by trading out of the first. It's interesting to see the value that is still there late in the 2nd round. Does more at bats mean more hits would be the big question. There will be some opportunity to trade down, it just hasn't been Gutey's MO.

2 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 11:18 am

Nice collection of talent but 12 rookies is a lot of inexperience to keep on their roster. Even if several end up on the practice squad.

I would be shocked if Gute actually drafts even 11 players this year. I expect him to do a couple of trades to move up using some of the extra picks. Maybe he ends up drafting 8 or 9 players after trades.

3 points
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LLCHESTY's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:36 am

Howard's agent is pulling your leg. His new deal added $50.7 million and 2 years to his 3 years and $39.3 already in place. So it's a 5 year/$90 million altogether.

https://twitter.com/TomPelissero/status/1510038927117361156?t=yHcrC08vG4...

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 04, 2022 at 02:37 am

Yeah, maybe. I am generally interested only in the first three years of a deal. I don't remember, but something like 50% of 4 and 5 year contracts only last 3 seasons or fewer. If they added two years with $25M base salaries, that is a different animal from adding guaranteed money in the out years, or even if they added dead money over the course of the five years through a signing bonus.

0 points
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marpag1's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:03 pm

Increasing the salary cap never really fixes ANYBODY'S problems. Because the exact same increase is given to every team in the league, no individual team gains any competitive advantage when it comes to fielding their roster.

5 points
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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 04, 2022 at 02:33 am

Very true. There is a slight benefit for teams like the Packers when there is a huge increase in the cap since the dead money numbers pushed into the future are being paid for with inflated cap dollars.

It is something though it is clearly not a panacea and the Packers remain at a competitive disadvantage relative to teams whose cap was in a healthy shape.

0 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:18 pm

All organizations decide on a particular strategy all the time. The Packers are going all in for the next 2-3 seasons.

The difference is that well managed organizations plan for the worst case scenario and develop an exit strategy if the agreed upon strategy fails.

My question here is; is there an exit strategy for the Packers from salary cap hell? Can they trade players for picks to get out of it. For example, in 2 years Kenny Clark’s and Aaron Jones’s best years will be behind them. Can we trade them
at that time for salary cap relief or can we just release them?
Bakh will be done by then as well. Probably Amos as well.
My point is, does pushing cap hits down the road mean that players cannot be traded to avoid cap hits? Is there a viable exit strategy for the Packers from the coming salary cap hell? TGR, anyone? Can we focus on solutions/opportunities versus criticism/problems?
Thanks, Since ‘61

4 points
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dobber's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:31 pm

If I had to guess, 2022 is AJones' last year in GB.

5 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:41 pm

You're probably correct dobber. I think the Packers move on from Jones regardless of how 2022 plays out. Thanks, Since '61

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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 03:53 pm

Amos will be 31 in 2 years so can see him goi g as his contract will be too expensive.

Jones will most likely be gone as well due to an expensive contract and RB are a dime a dozen in the NFL these days and can be found with day 3 draft picks.

Bahk may or may not be done as he will be 33 in two years and elite tackles can play well into their mid 30's but his contract may be too rich by that point.

I think fans forget Clark was only 20 years old when he was drafted. He is only 26 now so in 2 years will only be 29yrs old by mid season being born in October

Elite DL players are not as easy to replace so unless his play starts declining and injuries start impacting his performance I don't see them letting him go unless they can't afford to pay him.

3 points
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croatpackfan's picture

April 03, 2022 at 04:34 pm

Since 61, they have exit strategy. Resignations. Mike Murphy will retire one year earlier, Gutekunst will become GM of one of new (maybe European franchise), MLF will become OC somewhere else where he will be able to sell them theory of complexity from simplicity...

That is their exit strategy...

2 points
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Oppy's picture

April 03, 2022 at 05:16 pm

I know it's not the main gist of your post, but I had to comment.

Kenny Clark will be 28 in two years, and nose tackle is an outlier position where players are often still in their prime years into their early 30's.

Unlike most skills of other positions in the NFL that rely heavily on athleticism, twitch, and speed, the ability to hold the point of attack vs. the double team is tied to raw strength and technique- two things that can be improved upon into your 30's. There is a fairly extensive history of dominant nose tackles over 30 in the NFL.

It's going to be a matter of staying free of injury more than anything for a player like Clark. If his body holds up, I would expect him to continue to play at a high level into his early to mid 30's if he so chooses. Something he actually has over many of the dominant NTs of the past who played well into their 30's is his body type. Many of the old-school NTs were hulking masses. Lots of stress on knees, ankles (and hearts). Clark is a bull who has exceptional strength in a more compact frame. The fact that he can play the double with great anchor at a weight that is 10-25 lbs less than a traditional NT should pay dividends to his longevity.

I believe Clark has a strong chance to display top tier nose play into his early to mid 30's if the back and knees hold up.

4 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 05:31 pm

Oppy I agree that Clark will play beyond his current contract but I doubt that the Packers will give him a 3rd contract. Especially if it is an expensive contract. My guess would be they try to trade him before they pay him again.
Thanks, Since ‘61

2 points
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Oppy's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:05 pm

This is, as you point out, part of the reason why I am so disappointed the Packers sold their future on Rodgers contract extension. Players like Clark should not be let to walk. He should have been part of the future that should have started last season.

1 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:52 pm

Oppy, the die has been cast. We're all in for the next 2-3 seasons. The question is; is an SB win worth it? That is the only justification for the decision to retain Rodgers and kick salary cap money into the next few seasons.

Maybe the packers make a blockbuster trade during the draft and the approach becomes clearer. We don't know.

At least we know where we're going and what the expectations are. If Rodgers was traded we would have more questions than answers on the team's direction. We would not be in salary cap hell but we could be a non-playoff team for a long, long time.

All we can do is see how this roster evolves between now and the end of preseason. There is no turning back.
Stay safe. Thanks, Since '61

1 points
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jhtobias's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:42 pm

This is how inflation works plain and simple :

Let's take Jaire as the example. Jaire has no motivation to sign a contract extension that is not above Howard in guaranteed money and amount per years . Him and his agents know this , because packers are looking for immediate cap relief and a soaring market. So the team has a choice to make .

1. Let him play out his 5th year and see where the market goes and we all know it will continue to get higher or trade him today if the value is acceptable to them and if another team is willing to pay this type of money to Jaire. Business is Business point blank .

Jaire runs a huge risk by doing this if he gets hurt again his value drops , if his play is not elite he takes a huge risk . That is for him and his agents to determine,

Now if I'm the packers the logical thing to do is say there is no way we will honor Howard money for 4 to 5 years at 25 million plain and simple if this is your red line we have an impasse that will not be solved. Jaire as hurt last yr and he is not in that position ,

I would use Jalen Ramsey as a pay structure with him. If this is not acceptable to Jaire then as good as he is the risk out weighs the reward and see how his value improves this team on the open market . Remember tagging him next yr will be hard because Jenkins is also up and you can't tag two players.

Bottom like teams have to ask which players give them the best chance to succeed that includes money, injury history , etc.

Just as the felt Davante was not nearly as important as Rodgers they will have to decide with Jaire. Do it sooner than later .

2 points
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dobber's picture

April 03, 2022 at 12:51 pm

AAV is one thing. Structure, guarantees, bonuses, and cash value are completely different. Most players who sign longer term second and third contracts know they aren't likely to see that AAV play out in full. If I had to guess, the issue at this point is guaranteed money. The Packers don't like to give much of it, and players (and their reps) want as much as they can get.

2 points
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Oldschool1955's picture

April 03, 2022 at 04:12 pm

Great post jht. My only question is if both Jenkins and Alexander are healthy and on top of their game which one is more valuable to the team and will cost more money to resign.

My guess is unless the Packers get lucky, and draft another CB with Alexander shutdown skills, he would be harder to replace in the pass happy NFL.

Now Jenkins should cost a lot less, 1/2 as much?, to resign especially if he stays at guard but the Packers don't seem to value OL not playing left tackle so they may let Jenkins walk as interior OL are easier to replace than Allpro CB's.

Jaire is only 25 so if healthy it would be tough to let him walk for nothing. My guess is they tag and trade him if they can't sign him.

2 points
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TarynsEyes's picture

April 03, 2022 at 02:24 pm

Gute has been successful in keeping the team competitive but mere folding chairs against the real competition. This is a form of success, no doubt, but it's the type that will not and should not ever be the mantle place. Making strides is not a success, and strides, which many have been false, are all this team does. Retains a status of strides getting them nowhere.

When this team doesn't win, less get into, the SB this year you can all scream about the strides Gute made this off-season, and next year when we don't even win the Division look back at Gute and remember the infamous strides he made while the team stood in place then went backward.

0 points
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Oppy's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:18 pm

I guess you ignored my last post towards you when you talk about how the Packers fold against "real" competition, so I'm forced to respond again:

The Packers beat the Cardinals, 49ers, Bengals, and Rams in 2021.

They held the Chiefs to 13 points and lost by 6 in a game where Love was slammed into the Rodgers-based offensive game plan with less than 3 days to prepare in his first ever start.

I'm sorry, but the narrative that the Packers only hold up vs. weak NFC North teams and can't beat "real" competition is not supported by facts. Yes, they got bounced by the 9ers in the divisional round. The offense and ST had horrible outings. That doesn't erase the fact they beat 4 play off caliber teams, "real" competition including both Super Bowl representatives in 2021. The Packers beat "real" competition just about every season they get the opportunity.

Your tired narrative that they aren't a "real" competitive team doesn't hold water. Do they shoot themselves in the foot in the playoffs? Yeah, eventually, when they lose a playoff game (like every other team in the playoffs except one does each year) they... lose to a playoff team. Saying they fold against real competition isn't accurate. The Packers certainly have games that make you wonder WTF.. but it isn't because they don't have the talent or the ability to hang with these other teams.

2 points
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TarynsEyes's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:40 pm

What the Packers do against the good teams in the regular season is fine, it's what they don't/can't do against them in the playoffs that matters most. That was the whole point of my comment and something that you and others make sure to ignore/deny. It's OK. I get it. You believe you'll somehow lose your fandom if you agree with me on anything.

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Oppy's picture

April 04, 2022 at 09:00 am

I hate to be the one to inform you of this, but there's plenty of legitimate reasons why someone might not agree with your takes that don't center around being concerned about being perceived as less of a fan.

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Harold Drake's picture

April 03, 2022 at 04:13 pm

The sky is falling! More salary cap panic clickbait. The end is near. I cannot wait for the next article warning us of an impending asteroid collision with the earth in 2245.

1 points
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Oppy's picture

April 03, 2022 at 08:21 pm

Ever hear of an underwater, or upside-down mortgage?
You might be a big fan of one.

0 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 09:57 pm

I thought that the asteroid was coming in 2249. I had those four extra years all planned out. Damn, my crystal ball was wrong again. Back to the Quija board. Thanks, Since '61

1 points
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Harold Drake's picture

April 04, 2022 at 04:16 am

Hi 61. My point as you probably gathered is that there are more urgent themes to consider than how the Packers MIGHT have cap problems in 2024. There is an immediate need to obtain an elite veteran WR and draft a Christian Watson or someone of that calibre to replace the loss of Adams and MVS. The cap is very elastic when it comes to filling a gaping hole and Russ Ball is a master capologist. Would we really not be able to find cap space if we could trade for DK Metcalf?

1 points
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Since'61's picture

April 04, 2022 at 08:49 am

Harold - I'm thinking the the Packers will make a trade for a WR. I'm thinking that they will trade one of their second round picks for the Steelers Deontae Johnson.

With Rothlessberger gone and Johnson in the last year of his rookie contract the Steelers might be willing to deal Johnson for a draft pick rather than lose him to FA. The Packers would get a good, experienced WR, with at least one season on an cap friendly salary.

We'll see but I think that Johnson would be a good pickup for the Packers and that he will fit into MLFs offense.
Thanks, Since '61

0 points
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Harold Drake's picture

April 04, 2022 at 09:49 am

Thanks for you comment. I like Johnson but I'm wondering if Claypool wouldn't be a better fit despite his combustible personality which cost the Steelers in one game last year that I watched.

But I'm wondering whether it's worth taking a shot at Julio Jones (assuming he's recovered from his various injuries) should it be impossible to acquire Metcalf (world class) or Lockett (also a deep threat). But I've been reading a lot about Christian Watson (I think packerswire has a report on him today) and Chris Simms also ranks him very highly as does our own Mr Nagler!

But it would be a shame if the Packers were unable to land one current NFL WR star and one top five college WR in the draft. The defense is looking so strong that I think having two top WRs for Rodgers to distribute the ball to might be the solution. But of course AR12 has to play well in the playoffs for the Pack to get to the Super Bowl. I re-watched the loss to the Niners and Rodgers made many, many errors and missed many open receivers apart from Lazard on the lunatic deep ball toss to a double-covered Adams. I still wonder whether Rodgers' nerves get the better of him in these situations. He's too good to make so many mistakes in key games not that it was his fault that the Packers lost to Tampa Bay. Oh, well....

1 points
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croatpackfan's picture

April 03, 2022 at 04:48 pm

Thank you Bruce to confirm what I wrote here at least 2 weeks ago. Rise in SC level will produce higher salary requirements from players to get. So, in percentage things will stay the same. We are speeding to the wall. And crash would be hard and will hurt for a long time.

Now, I tease you to produce as much downvotes you can, so I can broke the record for the most downvoted comment.

I hope I will be here 2 years from now, when AR apologists will start to understand why some of us (minority) was eager to kick in the as* crying Diva 2 years ago. Ctying Diva is not a Packer, he is only and above everyone Aaron Rodgers fan. I will remind them on this day! And on this situation.

Business is business. And maybe I do not know well NFL, I can assure you that I know how to run the business. And NFL is business, business as usual.

1 points
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Tex49's picture

April 03, 2022 at 07:44 pm

I’m no capologist but the Rams have to be at least around Green Bay in pushing cap hits to later years. And they have no draft picks

2 points
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Since'61's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:04 pm

But they have a Lombardi trophy so their FO has job security to get through the salary cap hell years and try again. Plus their QB Stafford is 4 years younger than Rodgers and gives them credibility and a chance to reach the playoffs every season. We could lose Rodgers after 2022, still be in SC hell and have no one to play QB.
That's the problem with the Packers current scenario. Whenever Rodgers retires the team is going off a cliff unless we draft or trade for a QB who can play quickly. Thanks, Since '61

1 points
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Tex49's picture

April 03, 2022 at 10:55 pm

Stafford also gives the Rams opponent a chance to win every game.

And with his back injury history are you sure he plays more successful seasons than Rodgers? I’m not convinced he does.

0 points
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croatpackfan's picture

April 04, 2022 at 02:15 am

Are you interested in winning seasons and quick out in the postseason? Or would you like your team to win SB, lets say every 5-8 years?

The goal is to reach the post season and than to play the best football you can. Not to choke in the utmost important moments.

As I see, Stafford has one ring. How many rings has Packers choker? And that is with his back injury problems...

0 points
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RobertWilson's picture

April 06, 2022 at 05:34 pm

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0 points
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