Packers Urged to Add Former Pro Bowl WR, Address ‘Biggest Weakness’

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers

Getty Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers looks on from the sidelines during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on January 09, 2022 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)

The Green Bay Packers are confident in the wide receivers they have currently rostered, but the team’s faith in the position is rooted more in optimism than in proven NFL performance.

The Packers appear to have a fabulous defense, not to mention the reigning back-to-back MVP under center in Aaron Rodgers. The two-headed backfield monster of Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon is arguably the best in the league, challenged perhaps only by Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt of the Cleveland Browns. Green Bay has broken the bank to put together another championship roster in 2022, yet to this point in the offseason has refused to spend much of anything trying to add to its corps of pass catchers.

General manager Brian Gutekunst did spend significant draft capital on wideouts, selecting Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs and Samori Toure in 2022. But the 38-year-old Rodgers remains absent a true No. 1 target as he enters the first year of an extension that will keep him in Green Bay for the next three seasons, perhaps the last three he will ever play.

Rodgers has hinted at his lack of weapons, albeit in a fair and judicious tone, already this offseason.

“Physically … they definitely look the part,” Rodgers told the Pat McAfee Show on Wednesday, July 6. “All three of the guys we drafted all have physical gifts.”

“[But] it could be a long training camp for the offense,” he continued. “I like the way our defense is looking and playing … so it could be some growing pains for the offense.”

And growing pains are fine, they’re expected, for first-year pros. The problem is not Watson or Doubs or any other receiver on the roster. The problem is the front office putting the onus on rookies to be difference makers for what is arguably the NFC’s best team yet again heading into next season.

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Packers Must Address ‘Biggest Weakness’ Before Season Begins

MVS Expected to IR

GettyRandall Cobb (left), Marquez Valdes-Scantling (center) and Allen Lazard (right) of the Green Bay Packers work out during training camp at Ray Nitschke Field on July 29, 2021 in Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin.

The Packers’ Super Bowl window has been open for awhile now, as the team earned back-to-back berths in the NFC championship before finishing with the top seed in the NFC last year, a campaign that ended in bitter disappointment with a home loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the Divisional Round of the playoffs.

But that window won’t stay open forever.

The only deficiency across the roster in 2022 appears to exist at the wide receiver position after Green Bay traded Davante Adams to the Las Vegas Raiders and let Marquez Valdes-Scantling leave for the Kansas City Chiefs in free agency.

It strains credulity that Gutekunst and company would believe it necessary to pay Rodgers more than $50 million per season for the next three years to remain contenders, then immediately strip him of all the proven, top-end pass catching talent on the roster.

Sam Monson of Pro Football Focus laid out the argument for the wide receiver position being the Packers’ biggest weakness in a piece published on Wednesday, July 6.

The last time (and only time) Aaron Rodgers went into a season without a clear No. 1 receiver was 2015 when Jordy Nelson tore his ACL in preseason. That year produced the worst PFF grade of Rodgers’ career, over 15 grading points lower than the seasons either side of it.

With Davante Adams traded away, Green Bay needs somebody to emerge as that No. 1 target. Allen Lazard likely begins the year with the bulk of the targets, but Sammy Watkins has the more natural skill set for the role, and Christian Watson is the rookie hope.

Packers Still Have Free Agency Moves to Make at Wide Receiver

Odell Beckham Jr. of the Los Angeles Rams

Getty ImagesWide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., formerly of the Los Angeles Rams, remains a free agent in 2022. 

What the front office is truly thinking is anyone’s guess, and there are moves still to be made via trade or free agency should the Packers decide to get aggressive and/or be willing to take a risk on a big-name like Odell Beckham Jr. or Julio Jones, despite the production level of either being hard to project.

But it’s hard to believe that the Packers’ shot callers can’t see what is so obvious to everyone else paying attention to the team — that Green Bay simply must address its lack of talent at wideout.

The team has just under two months to do before the Packers open the season against on the road against the Minnesota Vikings on September 11.

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