Trade Proposal Lands Packers Elite WR For Newly-Acquired Pick

Jordan Love, Packers

Getty Quarterback Jordan Love of the Green Bay Packers looks to pass during a preseason game against the New Orleans Saints in August 2022.

The Green Bay Packers just made the biggest trade in franchise history and a second major swap may follow quickly on its heels.

Part of the Packers’ return for shipping quarterback Aaron Rodgers to the New York Jets was the No. 42 overall pick in Thursday’s NFL Draft. Green Bay already held the rights to the 45th selection and has a need at wide receiver. The organization can address that need in several ways, including utilizing its newly-acquired second-rounder as a trade chip to add a young, affordable pass-catcher with high upside to new QB Jordan Love’s arsenal.

Among the best options of wideouts potentially available via trade is Jerry Jeudy of the Denver Broncos.

Jerry Jeudy Offers Packers Promising Talent Despite Slow Start to NFL Career

Jerry Jeudy

GettyWide receiver Jerry Jeudy of the Denver Broncos looks on before a game at Empower Field at Mile High in October 2022.

Denver selected Jeudy with the No. 15 overall pick in the first round of the 202o draft. An explosive collegiate playmaker at the University of Alabama, Jeudy spent the first two seasons of his career catching passes from the likes of Drew Lock, Teddy Bridgewater, Jeff Driskel, Brett Rypien and Kendall Hinton.

If several of those names aren’t familiar to you, don’t worry, you’re not alone. In fact, Hinton has spent most of his NFL career playing wide receiver in unspectacular fashion. Even the recognizable names on the list aren’t all that impressive. But despite a lack of quality quarterback play on a consistent basis, Jeudy produced 90 catches for 1,323 yards and three touchdowns across 26 games played over first two seasons, per Pro Football Reference.

Circumstances were supposed to change in 2022 when the Broncos brought in quarterback Russell Wilson. Instead, Wilson produced the worst campaign of his 11-year career by a wide margin as Denver’s offense was among the most anemic in the entire league. Jeudy still put up the best numbers of his professional tenure, with 67 catches for 972 yards and six touchdowns.

That production highlights the fact that Jeudy retains significant value, while also indicating that he may never reach his ceiling as a member of the Broncos.

Packers Should Have Shot to Trade for Jerry Jeudy Before NFL Draft is Over

New England Patriots

GettyWide receiver Jerry Jeudy of the Denver Broncos celebrates after scoring a touchdown during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars in October 2022.

Mired in Wilson’s massive contract for the next several seasons and apparently devoid of the franchise savior for whom the Broncos paid nearly $243 million, Denver’s next Hail Mary answer was to dole out even more draft picks to acquire Sean Payton as the team’s new head coach. Payton’s mandate will be to turn Wilson around and to do so, he’ll need talent like that which Jeudy can provide.

As such, Payton told the NFL Network on March 26 that the Broncos wouldn’t look to move either Jeudy or wide receiver Courtland Sutton this offseason.

“I see and read just like everyone else does,” Payton said. “But we’re not trading those two players.”

It’s been nearly one month to the day since Payton made those comments, which is a long time in an NFL offseason. The draft is two days away and Payton’s words could have been tactics from the start. If they weren’t, the facts on the ground can easily change between now and the middle of the second round, particularly if a receiver or two with first-round grades tumble down the board.

Green Bay might need to toss in a fifth- or sixth-rounder this year or in 2024 to sweeten the pot, which the Packers can now afford to do after clearly winning the Rodgers trade with the Jets earlier this week. The move would satiate Green Bay’s need for another wideout to line up alongside second-year players Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs.

The Packers can then use the No. 13 selection they acquired after a first-round pick swap with New York to draft either a tight end or a defensive lineman, their two biggest needs outside of receiver. The No. 45 selection can be used to address whatever need Green Bay doesn’t fill at No. 13, and then the Love era can finally begin in earnest.

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