The Green Bay Packers may have a bunch of young and promising wide receivers, but general manager Brian Gutekunst could take a big swing by trading for an All-Pro veteran at the position.
Even after drafting three pass catchers in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Packers could use an established veteran playmaker to help out Jordan Love in his first year as a full-time starter. Gary Davenport with Bleacher Report has just the guy in mind, naming the Packers as a potential suitor for Tampa Bay Buccaneers All-Pro Chris Godwin.
“On one hand, an argument can be made that it makes more sense for the Buccaneers to keep Godwin around than Evans, if only because Godwin is significantly younger,” Davenport wrote. “On the other hand, that youth could also mean that Tampa could fetch a better haul of picks. Frankly, it’s a matter of Tampa taking a long, hard look at the status of the roster and the team’s future.”
Godwin was a third-round pick back in 2017, but since then the 27-year-old has turned into one of the more reliable weapons in the league when healthy. Along with a Super Bowl ring, Godwin has already earned second-team All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors while racking up at least 1,000 receiving yards in three of the last four seasons. Now, Godwin is in the middle of a three-year, $60 million extension that could make him expendable for Tampa Bay during their rebuild.
With that kind of playmaking ability, it’s easy to see why a team he’d be an ideal trade piece for a team like the Packers.
Other Veteran Wide Receivers for Green Bay
While Godwin would be an exciting playmaker for the Packers, there are other more realistic options that Gutekunst could pursue.
The Packers have been linked to veteran wideout Corey Davis, who is still under contract for the New York Jets. However, the Jets could clear $10.5 million in cap space if they released the former first-round pick, and the Packers could use an established veteran with size like Davis.
Unfortunately for Packers fans, Jets head coach Robert Saleh has remained committed to Davis this offseason. He’s not the only veteran that the Packers could pursue, however.
Davenport also named the Packers as a potential suitor for Cincinnati Bengals receiver Tyler Boyd. With Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins establishing themselves in Cincinnati, Boyd has openly admitted that his time with the franchise could be coming to an end.
If the Packers aren’t interested in a trade, other veterans still available in free agency include Julio Jones, Kenny Golladay, and Jarvis Landry.
Why Do the Packers Need a Veteran WR?
If the Packers don’t end up making a move for an established veteran receiver, there are likely going to be plenty of growing pains for the offense in 2023.
The Packers only have rookies or second-year players under contract at the position. Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, Samori Toure, and Bo Melton headlined the group prior to this year’s draft, but all of these receivers have only been in the NFL for a year.
The plan appears to be for Love to grow with his young receivers in his first year as a full-time starter. However, if the Packers are interested in setting him up for success, having a veteran with significant experience to be a safety blanket for the former first-round pick could be beneficial to his development this upcoming season and beyond.