At least one group of analysts thinks that the Green Bay Packers are doing well for themselves in the early portion of free agency. Pro Football Focus released a list of four teams that should count themselves as “winners” of the first few days of the 2018 league year, and the Packers are in the hunt.
The team’s big moves involved the signing of defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson and tight end Jimmy Graham, along with the release of wide receiver Jordy Nelson. PFF’s Steve Palaazzolo had this to say about the moves:
Putting Wilkerson with Mike Daniels and Kenny Clark up front immediately gives Green Bay one of the top defensive lines in the league on potential alone ... Graham is not the player he once was, but even as an uber-red zone threat, he’ll make life difficult when trying to defend the Packers’ offense.
The other three teams on the list were the San Francisco 49ers, Kansas City Chiefs, and Los Angeles Rams. The Rams drew praise for their trades, which included the acquisitions of cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib, as well as the re-signing of Nickell Robey-Coleman and the use of the franchise tag on safety LaMarcus Joyner. Kansas City’s attention is mainly focused around the addition of Sammy Watkins (a former Ram) and the Alex Smith trade to Washington, while the 49ers brought in Richard Sherman, Weston Richburg, and Jerick McKinnon.
Although Packers fans appear to have mixed feelings about the first five days of free agency — and with valid reason, as the team has not signed anyone of note in the secondary — at least the team’s early moves are getting praise from one unbiased source. Furthermore, there is still plenty of time remaining and many good cornerbacks on the market who can still help improve the team’s defensive backfield.