There’s no more obvious sign that the NFL is going through a transitional period than when the Packers try to do something radical with their team. They have had some success in recent years and are looking like they could be competitive for years to come, but it would take an unprecedented move by the franchise if they want to compete in 2022.
The Green Bay Packers are going to attempt salary cap magic in 2022. The team will be attempting to sign players under the newly implemented rookie wage scale, which is a system that will limit how much money teams can spend on rookies. Read more in detail here: green bay packers salary cap 2022.
The Green Bay Packers have said that they want to reassemble the band and try again for the Super Bowl.
Following the disappointment of the 2021 season’s conclusion, head coach Matt LaFleur, general manager Brian Gutekunst, and senior vice president/director of football operations Russ Ball feel the Packers can “run it back” and try again.
The problem is that, coming into the 2022 league year, the Packers are around $37 million above the salary limit.
It’s time to let your imagination run wild.
The Green Bay Packers are determined to keep the Super Bowl window open as long as possible.
The Green Bay Packers’ general manager Brian Gutekunst, head coach Matt LaFleur, and President and CEO Mark Murphy announce Matt LaFleur as head coach | Stacy Revere/Getty Images
“There are ways to shift money and make sure we get the majority of our key players back,” LaFleur said immediately after the Packers’ playoff defeat to the San Francisco 49ers (via the team website). “Will there be some difficult choices to make?” There’s no question about that. But I’m confident in Russ’ and Gutey’s abilities, as well as our combined capacity to find out a way to achieve this.”
That was the attitude going into the offseason. Despite a significant salary budget constraint and 15 unrestricted free agents (including Davante Adams), LaFleur and the front staff have remained confidence in their ability to keep the nucleus of a Super Bowl contender intact.
The Packers’ problem is that saying it is easier than doing it. Kenny Clark and Aaron Jones’ contracts have already been revised. This resulted in a $14 million save, which is a fantastic start. Still, $37 million doesn’t vanish overnight without big sacrifices to key players, and that’s not even taking into account free agents.
Gutekunst, on the other hand, does not believe the Packers are on the verge of a “fire sale.”
“I don’t think we’ll have to get go of a lot of guys.” According to Acme Packing Company, he remarked in a recent press conference, “We’ll sort of move through it as we go through it, but we have a lot of various alternatives depending on where we travel.” “This isn’t going to be one of those fire sales where we get rid of a number of folks.”
Cuts will have to be a part of the process, no matter what Gutekunst says.
Za’Darius Smith “may” be a part of the team’s future plans, according to Brian Gutekunst, but something will have to be done about his “very expensive” cap number. That would need voidable years and Smith’s willingness to accept them. Gutekunst claims to have a close friendship with Z.
— Ryan Wood (@ByRyanWood) February 23, 2022
The Packers are talking the right language, and the restructures are helping, but any future salary cap wizardry will have to include some layoffs. It’s worth noting how Gutekunst hedged his chances. He said that the Packers would not cut a “bunch” of players, but it does not rule out the possibility of certain cuts.
For a long time, veteran outside linebacker Za’Darius Smith seemed to be the most probable cut. He’s been a key part of Green Bay’s defense in recent years, but due to a back issue, he only appeared in two games last season. The development of Rashan Gary as a reliable pass rusher makes the cost savings gained by eliminating Smith intriguing. If Smith continues on the roster in 2022, he will have the second-highest cap charge on the club ($27.6 million), behind only Aaron Rodgers ($46.6 million). If the Packers cut him, his dead cap figure will be just $12.3 million, saving the Packers $15.2 million and allowing them to stay under the limit.
According to ESPN, Gutekunst informed the reporters that Smith’s future is one of the “difficult decisions to make as we go ahead.”
The writing seems to be on the wall for the guy known as Z.
Randall Cobb, a veteran wide receiver and a close buddy of Rodgers’, will almost certainly be cut. Cobb’s cap charge if he remains would be $9.5 million, but his dead cap is just $2.7, thus the Packers can save $6.7 by releasing him before June 1st. Cutting Cobb after June 1st would save them considerably more money ($8.1 million), since half of the dead cap hit would carry over to 2023.
It seems like a lot of fun money, and sometimes that’s what it takes to get the job done as a general manager, but there don’t appear to be many situations in which the Packers would go below the salary limit without sacrificing some key players.
In terms of free agency, how active can the Packers be?
Green Bay Packers’ Davante Adams #17 enters the field before a game against the San Francisco 49ers | Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Although Gutekunst doesn’t anticipate to lose many players, it’s important remembering that several of them have the ability to go in free agency. Adams is the most well-known name on the list, although free agents Robert Tonyan Jr., De’Vondre Campbell, Chandon Sullivan, Rasul Douglas, Allen Lazard (restricted free agent), and Marquez Valdes-Scantling are also on the list.
The obvious aim is to sign Adams to a long-term contract, but he will not be cheap. He allegedly wants $30 million per year, and neither side wants to use the franchise tag until it’s absolutely necessary.
“It’s not something we like doing… “It’s not something we want to do if we don’t have to,” Gutekunst said of tagging Adams. “We’d want to come up with a long-term solution that benefits both parties.”
Even the franchise tag for 2022 would cost the Packers roughly $22 million, so bringing Adams back will be a hefty price in any case.
Last season, Campbell was named to the All-Pro team, and he seems to be a key member of the defense going ahead. However, he might turn his strong season into a hefty paycheck on the free market, so there’s no guarantee he’ll return to Green Bay. The same can be said about Douglas, who began the season on the Packers’ practice squad in Arizona and finished as a key contributor (five interceptions, including two pick-sixes and 13 passes defended). He’ll definitely want to take advantage of a paycheck.
If the Packers can’t come up with the cash, two of their best defensive performers will likely be released in 2021.
A dilemma is also forming at wide receiver. Both Lazard and MVS have options, while Valdez-Scantling has shown interest in returning. Even watching Equanimeous St. Brown depart would be a setback for a wide receiver room that has suddenly become thin, particularly if Cobb is released. If Adams is allowed to walk, Green Bay will face a worst-case situation.
Gutekunst, Ball, and the front office have a lot of work ahead of them in order to stay under the salary limit, but they’ll be busy simply trying to keep some of these crucial players around.
Not everyone will be able to return, but even if Rodgers decides to remain in 2022, the Packers would struggle to compete if key players like as Campbell, Douglas, Lazard, and Valdez-Scantling leave.
Rodgers is also said to want to be paid $50 million per year, according to reports. He has denied it, but his possible pay demands might add to the mountain of troubles.
The troubling part is that we haven’t even touched on how putting money in the bank (which Green Bay will certainly have to do) will affect next free agency classes and Green Bay’s long-term survival.
Jaire Alexander and Elgton Jenkins will both be free agents in 2023, and they’ll both want a lot of money due to their supernatural abilities. Players like Rashan Gary and A.J. Dillon will be seeking for new, lucrative contracts during the 2024 offseason.
The Packers insist they’ll work it out, but handling Adams, Rodgers, the salary cap, and a plethora of free agents…all while keeping an eye on the future…will require a lot of magic.
ESPN and Pro Football Reference provided the statistics. Spotrac provides contract information.
The “Packers 2022 free agents” is a story that the Green Bay Packers are going to attempt salary cap magic in 2022. The team has been struggling with financial issues due to the lack of revenue from their stadium and will try to use future draft picks as currency. Reference: packers 2022 free agents.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much are the Packers over the cap for 2022?
A: The Packers are currently over the cap by $22.5M for 2022.
Who is the highest paid Packer?
A: Aaron Rodgers.
How Much Does Aaron Rodgers make?
A: Aaron Rodgers salary is $22.5 million per year with the Packers in 2019.
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