The Green Bay Packers are shifting course in a big way in 2023, but some vestiges of the previous era are worth keeping around a while longer.
Green Bay’s biggest roster hole is on the back end of its defense. High quality cornerbacks in Jaire Alexander, Eric Stokes and Rasul Douglas are enough to make the Packers’ secondary formidable but a weakness exists in their complements at the safety spot.
The team’s top backfield patroller for the last four seasons was Adrian Amos, who hit free agency in March after playing out his four-year, $36 million contract. He has spent the last couple of months exploring the market for his best opportunity, while the ideal situation for both Amos and the Packers appears to be a reunion in Green Bay.
David Kenyon of Bleacher Report asserted on Wednesday, May 24, that re-signing Amos is the most important move the franchise still needs to make ahead of next season.
“It would be surprising if the Packers aren’t also eyeing a veteran receiver, but safety is a more pressing spot,” Kenyon wrote. “Darnell Savage and Rudy Ford are Green Bay’s projected starters, along with Tarvarius Moore as a top backup. While the Packers might be able to navigate 2023 with that trio, re-signing Adrian Amos for a fifth season would be sensible.”
Adriam Amos Struggled Through Down Year in Green Bay in 2022
As an eight-year veteran now on the wrong side of 30, Amos’ biggest concern is hitting one last big NFL contract. The Packers’ biggest concern was the safety’s significant decline in play in 2022 as compared to his performance across the three seasons prior.
Amos was one of the league’s better safeties in pass coverage over a five-year stretch, forcing incompletions at a rate north of 17% and allowing “explosive receptions” on just 1% of his snaps between 2017-21, according to Brad Spielberger of Pro Football Focus (PFF). However, Amos’ PFF player grade dropped to 54.2 last year, a dip of more than 15 points from his worst professional campaign.
That drop in production is one reason the Packers allowed Amos to explore free safety absent an offer from the team. That offer has yet to come, which gives Green Bay more negotiating leverage with a player it legitimately needs to bring back for at least one season before finding a longer-term solution.
Packers, Adrian Amos can Find Contract Compromise
But Amos has some leverage as well. He knows the Packers are shy on talent at his position and he can make a case for a rebound year in 2023 considering the reliability and longevity he has shown to this point in his career.
Situations like these are often mitigated by a compromise — a short-term contract with a high annual average salary. Spotrac projects Amos’ value at $6.8 million annually over a three-year deal. If the safety can’t find that on the open market, then upping his annual number and throwing in some incentives could be enough to entice Amos to sign a one-year contract in Green Bay.
Amos can prove himself worthy of a multiyear deal through his early 30s while earning something close to the $9 million per season he was paid by the Packers over the past four years. Green Bay brings back a veteran safety familiar with its scheme to help anchor an expensive defense in 2023, and everybody wins at least a little bit.