There are always rumors and fan suggestions that the Green Bay Packers are in the running for big-name free agents. However, when someone like Ian Rapoport also thinks the Packers could be involved in signing a wide receiver, the possibility gains a ton of credence. During an appearance on The Pat McAfee Show, Rapoport said he thought the Packers would be in contention for Jarvis Landry, Julio Jones and Odell Beckham Jr.
The Packers have been linked to each of these receivers by various outlets (including this one) for months. The question is, will any of them happen?
Would the Packers sue Odell Beckham Jr.?
The Green Bay Packers were one of the finalists for Odell Beckham Jr. after securing his release from the Cleveland Browns last season. However, OBJ opted to sign with the Los Angeles Rams. The move worked for him as he won a ring with the Rams. Unfortunately, he also tore his ACL during the Super Bowl and won’t be available until later in the season, if at all.
The fact is, OBJ has already turned down the Packers once. He made it clear he didn’t want to play in Green Bay when he chose Los Angeles over them. Even if he is not signed before the start of the season, many teams will be interested in his services in November or December. He is unlikely to choose Green Bay this time.
Would the Packers sue Jarvis Landry?
There was a time when Jarvis Landry was one of the most dominant wide receivers in the NFL. From 2015 to 2019, he made five straight Pro Bowls and had three 1,000+ yard seasons. He also hasn’t missed a single game until 2020.
The question of whether the Packers would pursue Jarvis Landry in free agency comes down to the fact that there are a few things that deviate from the Green Bay norm. First, Landry is entering his 30-year-old season. Now the Packers were ready, willing and able to offer Davante Adams the richest wide receiver contract in NFL history and he enters his 30-year-old season. Jarvis Landry, however, is not Davante Adams. Another concern is that Landry hasn’t been at his usual level of production for the past two seasons. In 2020, he had 840 receiving yards, then his lowest since his rookie season. Last year, in 12 games, he amassed 570 yards. His 47.5 receiving yards per game was only marginally better than his 47.4 yards per game in his rookie season.
Maybe it was due to an injury. Maybe it’s because the Browns are, well, the Browns. However, Landry will almost certainly be looking for a much more lucrative deal than the Packers are willing to give him.
Would the Packers sue Julio Jones?
In my opinion, it’s the free agent target that makes the most sense for the Packers. While Julio Jones is older than Jarvis Landry, he also has more against him in terms of missing time. In other words, he would be more likely to accept a shorter, less expensive “proof it” offer. The Packers made a similar signing earlier this offseason when they signed Sammy Watkins.
Another factor in Jones’ favor is that he already knows Matt LaFleur. LaFleur served as quarterback coach for the Atlanta Falcons in 2015 and 2016.
The question is, would Julio Jones want to play for Green Bay? Any team that’s going to sign Jones is going to ask him to sign a shorter contract. If he wants to turn a one-year contract into a final big payday, there’s no better place for him than Green Bay. In Tennessee, he received 48 targets in 10 games. It was, by far, the least of his career, even in previous seasons in which he ran out of time. In Green Bay, he would walk into a room with three rookies, (possibly) Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb. He would have plenty of opportunities to catch passes, perhaps more than anywhere else.