Packers in position to make star splash but Jonathan Taylor never made sense
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Green Bay Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst decided to go young (and cheap) this offseason, so how exactly does a disgruntled veteran running back fit that plan? According to a recent report from ESPN’s Stephen Holder, that’s exactly what Gutey and Co. were trying to figure out or perhaps already established when they discussed a trade for Indianapolis Colts’ tailback Jonathan Taylor.
By clearing Aaron Rodgers’ cap figure in 2024 and moving on from some veterans the last two springs, the Packers are positioned with a loaded core of young talent to pounce on a trade in the near future if the team coalesces quickly. A blockbuster deal for a running back, however, doesn’t fit with that team-building strategy.
If Green Bay’s plan this season resembles what the Minnesota Vikings are calling a “competitive rebuild,” then it’s fair to wonder about this question of a star trade. What if a star hits the open market or the trade market and the Packers have the chance to snag him? After dealing Davante Adams and Rodgers, clearing the salary-cap decks for the future, and pouring resources into one of the youngest teams in the NFL, what exactly would they be accomplishing?
For starters, the Packers don’t think 2023 is a lost season. Not only do they believe they can win and be competitive this season, but the simple act of trying to win, even if they fail, matters to the franchise.
“I think winning’s a culture thing,” Gutekunst said back in December on not wanting to rest Rodgers or veterans in favor of evaluating younger players.
“I don’t think we ever roll out there on a Sunday, or Monday, Thursday, or whatever it is nowadays, without the intention of winning. This place has a long history … I just think that’s what this place has always been about and, at least while I’m here, it’s always going to be.”