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Cheese Curds, 1/17: Packers enter offseason with flexibility to add talent

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With a lot of cap space and a lot of needs, expect the Packers to be busy in free agency this March.

Green Bay Packers Introduce Matt LaFleur - Press Conference Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

The Green Bay Packers will likely have more salary cap space this offseason than any year in recent memory, and general manager Brian Gutekunst will surely be a busy man when March rolls around.

With an estimated $50 million in cap room, Gutekunst and his personnel department will have enough flexibility this spring to add at least one, maybe multiple significant pieces to the roster. Edge rushers abound this year, both in the free agent and NFL Draft classes, so it would be little surprise to see the Packers double-up by signing a veteran and using their first draft pick at that position.

Safety is also an intriguing position, though one where the team may be better suited to finding a veteran. Then there’s the offensive line, particularly the guard position, which should see some investment through both avenues of player acquisition.

There are no shortage of needs on this roster, but thankfully Gutekunst has no shortage of cap room this year either. Perhaps last season’s signings will serve as a signal to the rest of the NFL — and players’ agents — that the Packers truly are serious about free agency once again.

Matt LaFleur can put stamp on Packers' free-agency pursuits | Packersnews.com
Can beat writers please stop giving legitimacy to the idea that the Packers might sign Le'Veon Bell? They aren't paying a running back $12 million or more — not on Russ Ball’s watch, and not since the incremental improvement he would provide to the offense is worth far less than that amount.

Instead, let's look at the edge rushers, defensive backs, and offensive line as serious free agency targets.

Top 25 NFL free agents of 2019: Defenders dominate rankings - NFL.com
There are a handful of top-flight edge rushers scheduled to hit the market this March, but there's a good chance that a few of them re-sign with their old teams or get franchise tags. Therefore, second-tier names like Za'Darius Smith or Preston Smith might be Packers targets.

Packers CB Jaire Alexander named to PFWA All-Rookie team | Packers.com
While David Bakhtiari got first-team All-Pro from the PFWA, Alexander joins Cleveland's Denzel Ward as the best rookie cornerbacks this season.

NFL playoffs: Poll shows fans *really* don’t want the Patriots in the Super Bowl - SBNation.com
This is probably the least surprising thing that could result from a poll of NFL fans about these games.

Explaining the “illusion of complexity” sought by new Packers coach Matt LaFleur | Packers Wire
While Mike McCarthy (and even Sean McVay) used 11 personnel regularly, LaFleur will likely borrow from Kyle Shanahan's approach and mix up the personnel groupings frequently. One notable item, however, is that he listed off 11, 12, and 13 personnel, suggesting that he doesn't see much value in a traditional fullback.

Re-grading every NFL team's 2018 offseason moves | ESPN
ESPN's writers gave the Packers' last offseason a C-plus. With the benefit of hindsight, they now give the offseason ... a C-plus.

Florida Man Says 'Jesus Told Me To" After Driving Ferrari Into Water | Real Talk 910
The first two words should explain it all. Also, here's a real quote from the guy: "Jesus made me the smartest man on earth and it's so hard to have this much responsibility."