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2023 Free Agency Frenzy Has Been Stale For This Elite Team

For the first time in just over 30 years, the NFC North could have a new king thanks to free agency. The Green Bay Packers have had two superb quarterbacks since the 1990s and the tides have now turned. With Aaron Rodgers possibly following in the footsteps of former Packers quarterback Brett Favre, Green Bay may turn to a fourth-year player, Jordan Love. With so much uncertainty going into the next season, Green Bay has quickly fallen behind in the free agency market.

NFC North Free Agency Winner

Ten days into free agency, there is one clear-cut winner in the NFC North. The Detroit Lions front office has been busy and it shows. The Chicago Bears have made some significant splashes on offense but the Lions are attacking both sides of the ball. Detroit upgraded the running back room by signing former Bears running back David Montgomery, which ultimately led to Jamaal Williams signing with a different team. In the 2022 NFL season, the Lions had a top-15 offense but had one of the worst defenses. With the latest free agency additions, the Lions can become a playoff contender next season.

Other significant free agency splashes for the Lions have been the signing of high-caliber safety, C.J. Gardner-Johnson. C.J. is one of several players for the Philadelphia Eagles that went on the stellar Super Bowl run last season and have left the team. Cornerbacks Cameron Sutton and Emmanuel Moseley will add a veteran presence to the secondary and help Jeff Okudah on the back end. The Lions also bolstered their offensive line through free agency. Offensive guard Graham Glasgow will join a line that only allowed 24 sacks last season.

NFC North Free Agency Loser

Through the first ten days of free agency, the Packers have only gained two new players. The Packers were a middle-of-the-road team on both sides of the ball last season and will need to catch up this off-season if they want to compete next season. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers has thrown a wrench into the off-season due to his cap hit. If the Packers trade him after June, they can split his dead cap hit across two years but will there be any quality players left if the Packers hold out that long? Until Rodgers leaves, there isn’t much more the Packers can do until they know who will be under center.

Green Bay re-signed linebacker Justin Hollins, safety Rudy Ford, cornerback Corey Ballentine, cornerback Keisean Nixon, and tight end Tyler Davis. Starting tight end Robert Tonyan was claimed by NFC North rival the Chicago Bears and starting defensive lineman Dean Lowry signed with the Minnesota Vikings. The Packers added these two players from the free agency market, former San Francisco 49ers safety Tarvarius Moore and unrestricted free agent long snapper Matt Orzech. The Packers may once again lean on the NFL Draft to fill in the gaps on offense and defense.

Can The Packers Capitalize On Free Agency?

Free agency for the 2023 season officially started on March 15 and will end on July 22 unless the first day of NFL training camp is scheduled to start prior. Until a deal is done between the Packers and quarterback Aaron Rodgers, it seems unlikely that the Packers will be able to capitalize in free agency. The main areas of need for the Packers this off-season are safety, tight end, edge rusher, wide receiver, and defensive line. The Packers have already attacked the safety position with the signing of Tarvarius Moore. The 2023 NFL draft can help fill in these gaps but at some point, a veteran presence will be needed.

 
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