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Free Agency Ideas For The Packers

Well I was off by only $1 million. According to the Times-Union, DE Aaron Kampman officially received 4 years, $26 million, and $11 million guaranteed. The article quotes Gene Smith, the Jaguars GM, who called it a "calculated risk." There certainly is some risk involved. My first choice would have been to keep Kampman, but after watching knee problems turn DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila from an effective pass rusher in 2007 to absolutely useless in 2008, I'm worried about knee problems for defensive ends. 

I asked for suggestions in my previous post for free agent ideas. I'm a fan of RB Brian Westbrook, but I hope he retires due to his concussion history. Otherwise he'd be a great back for the Packers. While I'd be happy if they didn't sign any free agents from other teams, after resigning all of their own current free agents, here were some other good suggestions from the comments:

Danniel Manning is a restricted FA the Bears put a 3rd round tag on. The Bears who do a poor job of "coaching up" their players have bounced him around from nickel back, free and strong safety and back again. So I’m not sure he even knows what is his best position. He’s athletic and if the Packers could decide on a position and "coach him up" he should be a reliable backup/potential starter. He’s an excellent kick returner. McCarthy said this year he was one of the games dangerous KR’s. He therefore would address two areas of need.

As was mentioned later, giving up a 3rd round pick to the Bears in a deep draft might not be wise, but it would be like acquiring a healthy version of CB Will Blackmon.

When they let Orlando Pace go, I laughed, because I knew last season was a wakeup call and would bet this next season will be a good one for him. Orlando has one, maybe two good years in him, I reckon and rotating him at Tackle might save some wear on the Pack’s O-Line.

Is Pace willing just to play out his career on someone's bench? If so, then the idea of acquiring a backup offensive lineman with some actual experience has some appeal to me. Though that hasn't been GM Ted Thompson's style, he did try it last year when he signed former Bill starter Duke Preston who was released during the preseason.

I guess I’m still hoping that he’ll try and sign a Cb who can come in and play a nickel or dime spot for us like Philip Buchanon, Benny Sapp, or Lito Sheppard...

Personally, I think Leigh Bodden would be a good addition, if the price is right. If still around in a week or 2 and price is commensorate w/ production… He might be a good fit.

While I don't know if any of those particular guys are on the radar, this may be the one area you see a veteran free agent signing. Last season, they signed S Anthony Smith and brought in Browns S Mike Adams for a visit. 

I don’t think a lot of teams are gonna be beating down his door so we have time to see how Jones does in the offseason workouts and mini-camps and also see how the draft shakes out. If he is still on the market in June and we feel like we need a boost at LOLB then yes, we should look at Joey Porter.

I'm not a fan, but I can certainly understand the appeal.

I would like them to take a chance on Jake Delhomme. Maybe he’s had better years, but at least he’s got experience. I cringe at the thought of Rodgers going down and who would come in to guide the Packers at that point.

With the Brian Brohm error over, I'm not sure what GM Ted Thompson is going to do. Draft another QB with a late round pick? Find a good QB for the practice squad? Stick with only 2 QBs? Sign a veteran like Delhomme?