Packers president pleased with new direction

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Former Packers General Manager Ted Thompson didn’t dip into free agency often. When he did, it often made a big difference.

So the flurry of activity under new G.M. Brian Gutekunst has caught the eye of his boss, who approves of the new way of doing business.

I’ve been very pleased,” Murphy said, via Jason Wilde of ESPN Wisconsin. “I think he used the term ‘aggressive,’ but I think it’s more that we’re more active. We’re participating in things that we haven’t in the past.

“We’re not going to sign everybody, and obviously with the salary cap there’s limitations, but I think he’s looking at every avenue to try to improve the team. Obviously time will tell. We’ve made a couple major decisions, both in terms of releasing some players or allowing players to leave in free agency, and then obviously a few signings and a trade as well. But I’m very pleased with what Brian has been doing.”

While Thompson was known for selected high-impact signings such as Charles Woodson, Gutekunst is dealing in bulk so far.

He’s signed tight end Jimmy Graham and defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson in free agency. He’s traded former first-rounder Damarious Randall to the Browns for backup quarterback DeShone Kizer, he signed Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller to an offer sheet which the teams matched thanks to the transition tag, cut wide receiver Jordy Nelson, and let safety Morgan Burnett walk in free agency to Pittsburgh.

Of course, there’s still a big piece of business to do, as a contract extension for Aaron Rodgers looms over the process. With Minnesota signing Kirk Cousins to a fully guaranteed deal, Murphy is aware that Rodgers’ deal will be a complicated one in addition to an expensive one. There have been suggestions that such a deal could be tied to a percentage of the cap, or Rodgers might want to push the envelope in some other direction.

“Yeah. There could be,” Murphy said of wrinkles in a Rodgers deal. “But as I said before, I’m confident we’ll be able to work around it. At the end of the day, we want Aaron to be a Packer for the rest of his career, he wants to play ’til he’s 40, and I think it just makes sense for both sides to figure out a way to get it done.”

Doing so will be another bold move, but the Packers have made more of those lately than they’re accustomed to.

40 responses to “Packers president pleased with new direction

  1. So people say ‘big deal’ over Kizer.

    Since Jeff Fisher decided to act like a petulant child, this weekend, how about this:

    What if Kizer was with the Fisher’s Rams for 4 years vs being with McCay’s Rams for 4 years?

    The Fisher/McCay dynamic really drove home average vs excellence. Although no one should be totally surprised, considering that Belichick gets more with less, every year. (helps his QB takes 5 to 10 mil less but he’d still be in the hunt, regardless).

    So maybe all you McCarthy haters are right. Maybe not. I do know their old model (TT) left them without depth. Some of you have forgotten more than I’ll ever know about the Packers. But it is time they got back in the game.

  2. What has been fixed thou? Green Bay’s biggest issue has been defense. For the past how many years? And you Trade one of your corners, you let one of your better safeties leave and you sign an expensive TE. A TE who doesn’t even block well. Also a position Rodgers doesn’t utilize much in the pass game. Wilkerson was a good signing I’ll give them that.

    I guess Rome wasn’t built in the day. If they can hit on some draft picks they might be ok. Better hope Rodgers plays out of his mind.

  3. “Former Packers General Manager Ted Thompson didn’t dip into free agency often. When he did, it often made a big difference.”

    Most recent example – signing Martellus Bennett. How much dead cap space this year?

    Oh, only $4.2 million….

  4. It’s really a mistake to say Thompson never did much in free agency. Charles Woodson and Julius Peppers come to mind along with Bennett and others.
    Aaron Rodgers contract extension is holding the Packers back. But as a scribe pointed out, if you go down the roster, it isn’t all that bad. Whether it’s enough to overcome the Vikings, we’ll find out. The Lions have stayed pretty much pat, but the Bears should be better. Could be an interesting division to watch.

  5. This is what they say in Washington every March. They haven’t been to a Super Bowl in 27 years.

  6. codylaws says:
    March 26, 2018 at 8:19 am
    They’re always pleased to be 3rd or 4th place in the north.
    ——————————————————————————————-
    It’s always great to see your ignorance first thing Monday morning. 8 Consecutive years in the playoffs, topped only by the Patriots and would have been 9 if Rogers doesn’t get hurt.

    But keep trying little fella

  7. He signed over the hill Jimmy Graham, professional injured crybaby Muhammad Wilkerson and no explanation needed DeShone Kizer.
    He also offered money to Kyle Fuller which the Bears matched so you basically watched a trailer for a movie but never actually saw it and now you are a movie critic.

    Congratulations!

  8. Speaking as a life long Packer fan, I cant believe how stupid some of our fan base is. Its never gonna be enough. They’ve been more active than they’ve been in years, and people are still complaining. Amateur GMs, the team hasnt even had a mini camp yet, the roster is nowhere near set. If the defense is atrocious again this year, then bitch when thats actually the case, not before theres even been a practice. SMDH

  9. How many years do the Packers and Steelers have to make the playoffs under a draft and develop approach before you realize it is a sustainable winning strategy? Mortgaging the farm for free agents is good for a year or two — see Denver with Peyton Manning — then the bill comes due and you’re in the red.

  10. So Gouda’s big move has been to sign Jimmy Graham to the biggest contract for a tight end in NFL history and his next big move will be to sign Aaron Rodgers to the biggest contract for anybody in NFL history. I guess we should expect a lot of touchdowns from that combination.

  11. packers291 says:
    March 26, 2018 at 10:36 am

    How many years do the Packers and Steelers have to make the playoffs under a draft and develop approach before you realize it is a sustainable winning strategy?
    __________

    Packer fans seem to have forgotten the lesson that was painfully taught last year. The only player the Packers have drafted and developed is Aaron Rodgers, and that was 13 years ago. I didn’t see a lot of development from anybody when Rodgers was out last year.

  12. The Packers have work to do, but not an extreme rebuild, defense especially. The changes they made worry Viking fans. That’s why they keep coming back here instead of the team sites they should be worried about….New Orleans and Philadelphia. It’s pretty clear who they fear the most.

  13. stellarperformance says:
    March 26, 2018 at 11:42 am
    It’s pretty clear who they fear the most.
    ————————

    Umm no….. with Cook back and Cousins chucking the rock the Vikings will fear nobody. Except maybe the Bears because they play the Vikings well for whatever reason.

  14. irishgary says:

    March 26, 2018 at 8:54 am

    codylaws says:
    March 26, 2018 at 8:19 am
    They’re always pleased to be 3rd or 4th place in the north.
    ——————————————————————————————-
    It’s always great to see your ignorance first thing Monday morning. 8 Consecutive years in the playoffs, topped only by the Patriots and would have been 9 if Rogers doesn’t get hurt.

    But keep trying little fella

    ————-

    I wouldn’t assume just because Rodgers plays you automatically make the playoffs. The NFC is a meat grinder right now. I can name 7 other teams that have better overall rosters than the Packers.
    Falcons
    Rams
    Saints
    Eagles
    Vikings
    Panthers
    Cowboys

    Up and coming teams:

    Seahawks
    49ers

    All these teams are more balanced than the Packers and could beat them even if Rodgers plays. Times are a changing. I’m not assuming anything. I respect Rodgers and how good he is and the Packers will be a thorn in my Vikings side if he plays all year, but I find it funny how Packer fans haven’t been humbled with how bad their team actually is overall roster wise.

    Football is a team sport. It shouldn’t rise and fall just because of one player.

  15. stellarperformance says:

    March 26, 2018 at 11:42 am

    The Packers have work to do, but not an extreme rebuild, defense especially. The changes they made worry Viking fans. That’s why they keep coming back here instead of the team sites they should be worried about….New Orleans and Philadelphia. It’s pretty clear who they fear the most.

    ———-

    We fear Aaron Rodgers……that’s it.

  16. askeddie11 says:
    March 26, 2018 at 7:16 am
    I think it was a downgrade from Nelson to Graham.

    \\\\

    Two different positions. You people need to get a clue.

    Graham > Bennett
    Adams > Nelson

    Now fill in the pieces with players around them and it’s a net positive.

    Why is this so difficult???

  17. gtodriver says:
    March 26, 2018 at 7:55 am
    “Former Packers General Manager Ted Thompson didn’t dip into free agency often. When he did, it often made a big difference.”

    Most recent example – signing Martellus Bennett. How much dead cap space this year?

    Oh, only $4.2 million….

    \\\\\\\

    How many high draft picks did the Vikings have vested in QB’s last year? How many of those guys are still on the team?

    Two firsts and a fourth for two guys that did nothing. Then you let the one successful QB you have had in years leave to get sucked into a 84 million dollar guaranteed contract that will be considered an epic failure if anything other than a super bowl victory is realized. No pressure. Your GM is looking more like his old Miami self and will probably be canned if Cousins doesn’t pan out.

    But hey, let’s worry about the Bennett deal. It’s peanuts compared to the potential hell your team just committed to…..

  18. instead of the team sites they should be worried about….New Orleans and Philadelphia

    >>

    You are correct, the Eagles, Saints and Rams are they only teams I’m concerned about in the NFC this year. Your New Green Bay Pretenders will be lucky just to make the postseason and will be dismissed just as quickly.

  19. Frazier28/7 says:
    March 26, 2018 at 1:15 pm
    You are correct, the Eagles, Saints and Rams are they only teams I’m concerned about in the NFC this year. Your New Green Bay Pretenders will be lucky just to make the postseason and will be dismissed just as quickly.
    /////////////////////////////

    Oh good. The 99th Viking troll with a crystal ball.

    Tell us……..do the Vikings finally win a SuperBowl? Does it finally happen?

  20. Your New Green Bay Pretenders will be lucky just to make the postseason and will be dismissed just as quickly.
    _________

    So just like the 2017 Vikings but without the rookie safety brain fart? Got it.

  21. Football is a team sport. It shouldn’t rise and fall just because of one player.
    ___________

    So we should just go to “automatic quaterbacks” because some teams can’t figure out how to keep or develop a good one? Brilliant.

  22. The Vikings are solid. They missed the SuperBowl by only one game. They have all the parts and pieces to go all the way next year. Not much has changed. The Viking fans have all the reason in the world to feel confident about back-to-back successful seasons………..just like 2009 following the best statistical performance of Favre’s career. The Vikings (apparently) were a shoe-in the following season that time too, for the same reasons.

    I forget. What happened in 2010? Did they win it all? Were they a shoe-in?

  23. I think the general feeling among Viking fans is that they’re optimistic about having another successful season next year because their core players are in their prime and they’re all coming back. Plus, Cook will be back and they’ve upgraded at quarterback. The difference from 2010 was that team was aging and really needed Favre to be outstanding. He couldn’t do it, the performance of most players declined, and everything that could go wrong did go wrong that year. Anyone criticizing Viking fans for their optimism while simultaneously predicting a division championship for the Packers has not been paying attention the last three years.

  24. Two different positions. You people need to get a clue.

    Graham > Bennett
    Adams > Nelson

    Now fill in the pieces with players around them and it’s a net positive.
    =======

    I can’t hear you over Jimmy Grahams film.

    You’re not getting All-Pro Jimmy Graham, 5 years ago. You’re not even getting good Jermichael Finley. You’re getting another Marty Bennett/Jared Cook.

  25. 2010? oh right, packer fan always living in the past… gotcha.
    why dont you bring up troy williamson and erasmus james while you’re at it

  26. Blake Martinez says hello

    >>

    Yea. Watched him a few times, he’s a backup and special teamer on most other teams. In Green Bay he’s a star as the other guys around him are that bad on defense.

  27. Packer fans seem to have forgotten the lesson that was painfully taught last year. The only player the Packers have drafted and developed is Aaron Rodgers, and that was 13 years ago.
    =====

    Nick Collins, All-Pro
    Clay Matthews, All-Pro
    Josh Sitton, All-Pro
    David Bakhtiari, All-Pro
    Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, All-Pro

    You don’t win division titles and have multiple 10+ win seasons if you don’t talent.

    .. the problem is, they had 3 really poor drafts in a row (2011-2013) Can’t sustain the draft-and-develop model that way.

  28. Yea. Watched him a few times, he’s a backup and special teamer on most other teams. In Green Bay he’s a star as the other guys around him are that bad on defense.
    =====

    He had a great year.

    Yes, the Packers are bad on defense. But its pretty clear he’s a player at this point.

    Not saying he’s Ray Lewis, but if you don’t think he showed enough to be a cornerstone player on the Packers D, you’re flat out wrong.

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