The Green Bay Packers are trying to be patient with their young receiving corps after a mistake-filled start to the 2022 regular season for their offense, but there is a deep-threat playmaker on the trade market that could appeal to them if they decide they need more firepower moving forward.
The Packers have been reportedly sniffing around the wide receiver trade market for months now despite drafting three receivers earlier this year. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, they had talks with Philadelphia Eagles about a potential trade for Jalen Reagor before he was dealt to the Minnesota Vikings. They were also said to have spoken with the Jacksonville Jaguars about Laviska Shenault Jr. prior to the deal that shipped him to the Carolina Panthers.
In both cases, the receivers were high-upside players who had fallen out of favor with their original teams and were looking to turn things around in a new environment. That also happens to be exactly what Darius Slayton has become to the New York Giants — and is why the Packers should consider giving them a call about the 25-year-old before the trade deadline arrives in a couple of months.
Packers Among ‘Best Fits’ for Slayton on Trade Market
Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox recently took a look at some of the names either rumored or confirmed to be on the trade market heading into Week 2 of the season and mentioned a few names that could interest the Packers, including Slayton.
Slayton has caught 124 passes over his first three seasons with the Giants and averaged 14.8 yards per reception over his career while flashing his sub-4.4 speed as a deep threat, but New York has steadily added to their receiving room since he arrived — signing Kenny Golladay and drafting Kadarius Toney and Wan’Dale Robinson. While Slayton has struggled to do his part and consequently fallen down the depth chart, it is possible the standards and expectations of a four-time MVP could kick him into high gear.
The addition of Slayton would give the Packers three experienced receivers on the perimeter to pair with Randall Cobb in the slot. They could still work in regular reps for rookies Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs but, at the same time, wouldn’t have to feel like they were entirely relying upon them if one of their veterans got hurt. That’s sort of how Week 1 went for them with Allen Lazard unable to play with the two rookies getting more targets than either Cobb or Sammy Watkins.
Slayton would also give their offense another speed demon alongside Watson to allow Rodgers to test opposing secondaries in the deep field.
Slayton’s Pay Cut Makes Him Affordable for Packers
Unlike some of the other trade or free agent options for the Packers at wide receiver, Slayton is a player that can be acquired for an ultra-low cost. The Giants got him to agree to take a pay for the 2022 season when they were unable to trade him, and he now carries a cap hit of just $965,000 — a number that gets lower with each game check he earns from New York as the weeks go on. The Packers don’t have a ton of cap space, but they have more than enough to accommodate a hit like that.
There is also the matter of the trade compensation it would take to acquire Slayton. None of the reports about previous trade talks mentioned any specific compensation, but, given Slayton’s pending status as a 2023 free agent and him currently being a third-stringer for the Giants, it is likely the Packers would have to go no higher than a conditional sixth-round pick to get him. The Packers also have three seventh-round selections in 2023 to offer up if they need a sweetener.