Drop any on- or off-topic thoughts you have this weekend down in the comment section below.
Here’s what I’m thinking about:
This David Bakhtiari situation just seems too weird. Here’s all of the facts:
- The Green Bay Packers converted Bakhtiari’s salary into a signing bonus this season, which pushes his cap hits forward. Going into 2024, he’ll now have a salary cap hit of over $40 million due to cap accounting for prior payments that have yet to hit the team’s salary cap. Based on that action, it seemed like the Packers were confident that Bakhtiari was going to be able to contribute a significant amount of snaps this season.
- Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst made it clear that Bakhtiari wasn’t going to get traded this season, as he told the press that less than a month ago.
- Bakhtiari has been on a “modified practice schedule,” as the team has called it, this season. At the start of training camp, Bakhtiari essentially practiced every other day. Now, he’s hardly practicing. He also didn’t show up to voluntary practices, along with just cornerbacks Jaire Alexander and Rasul Douglas, until he needed to hit a mandatory minimum of practices to receive a workout bonus, per his contract.
- Bakhtiari has been vocal about wanting the NFL to change their turf surfaces. Last week, he missed action in just Week 2 of the season on a turf surface in Atlanta. While it seems like Bakhtiari has been in and out of the lineup constantly over the last few seasons, he really has only had one previous setback with his knee that cost him action. Remember, once he returned to the Packers’ active roster last season, most of his missed games came due to an in-season appendectomy.
So what’s happening with Bakhtiari? No one will give you a straight answer. That only gives room for speculation to grow, but I don’t blame people who are going down that route when head coach Matt LaFleur refuses to answer questions about the situation.
Take a look at the last three opportunities that LaFleur has had to answer anything Bakhtiari related in pressers:
Here's all they got out of Matt LaFleur on David Bakhtiari not playing today pic.twitter.com/fqoQ7YOGMB— Justis Mosqueda (@JuMosq) September 17, 2023
I’m not sure what I believe is happening with Bakhtiari right now. All I know is that the team seemed really confident that he had bounced back, health-wise, coming into camp and now they don’t seem to want to even acknowledge the fact that he’s not on the field, Meanwhile, Bakhtiari has netted something around $80,000 per snap that he’s been on the field for since his 2020 extension. Weird.