There was great sadness at the news that Jordy Nelson would be leaving the Green Bay Packers after ten seasons with the team. Nelson leaves the team ranked fifth all-time in receiving yards (7,848 yards), third in receptions (550), and second in touchdowns (69). He was also a prominent figure in the community, taking over the charity softball game from Donald Driver after Driver retired.
Nelson joined the Packers as a second-round pick in 2008 but was released on Tuesday as a money saving option. Cutting Nelson freed up $10.2 million in cap space for the Packers for the 2018 season.
The news now is that Jordy Nelson is meeting with the Oakland Raiders and likely to sign a contract, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter:
Raiders trying to finalize deal today for former Packers’ WR Jordy Nelson, who still is in Oakland, sources tell ESPN. “This is going to get done,” one source said of the talks. Nelson on his way to becoming a Raider.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 15, 2018
Jordy Nelson had plenty of interest. There were several teams looking to meet with Nelson after news of his release.
However, the Seahawks and Saints are reportedly making a late push to convince Nelson not to sign in Oakland and to take his previously-scheduled visits with those teams.
With this move, the Raiders are also reportedly planning to move on from wide receiver Michael Crabtree and his necklace-related antics. The move with Crabtree would free up cap space for Nelson. Crabtree led the Raiders in targets, receptions and touchdowns last year. The Raiders are also took advantage of the Packers moving on from Jared Cook after the 2016 season as Cook led the Raiders in receiving yards in 2017.
If he does sign in Oakland, Nelson brings an experienced receiver to the Raiders. With a young quarterback (Derek Carr) and a young star receiver (Amari Cooper), the veteran presence of Nelson should help boost their growth. Nelson has been a great team player and leader in his ten years with the Packers.
Clearly, this is something the Raiders are looking to add to their offense, but there are plenty of people in Oakland familiar with Nelson. Wide receivers coach Edgar Bennett was in Green Bay up until this January as both WRs coach and offensive coordinator, while GM Reggie McKenzie came up within the Packers’ front office. Nelson also played with Cook in Green Bay in 2016.
UPDATE: Nelson’s deal in Oakland is done, and has been reported by old friend James Jones — the former Packers and Raiders receiver. According to Jones, it’s a two year deal worth $15 million total and with $13 million guaranteed.