Brian Gutekunst, Packers General Manager, said at his opening press conference that he looked to be more aggressive in free agency than his predecessor, Ted Thompson. This appears to be the case as Muhammad Wilkerson, former New York Jet, is scheduled to make a visit today to Titletown. This kind of move falls right in line with this aggressive approach. Although the Packers are limited in cap space, this is the type of move early on that should get Packers fans excited about the new direction of the organization. Wilkerson has the ability to be an extremely disruptive force on the defensive line (when motivated) and had his best seasons under guess who? That’s right, Mike Pettine, the Packers new Defensive Coordinator. I think it’s time for a reunion. What do you think Packers fans?
Watch for some salary cap relief to come sooner than later. Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, Bryan Bulaga and Clay Matthews may all be on the table to restructure their current deals. If any of this happens, Green Bay will be allotted some much needed funds to make a significant impact on their current roster. I predict Wilkerson gets a short, prove it type of deal and he does indeed become a Green Bay Packer. In addition, watch for the Packers to make one more significant free agent acquisition. I believe the Packers either sign Allen Robinson of the Jacksonville Jaguars or Donte Moncrief of the Indianapolis Colts. Either player would be a major upgrade and would compliment Davante Adams in the passing game.
In addition to free agency, Gutekunst has a stockpile of draft picks as well. The Packers enter the NFL draft with 12 total picks. Watch for them to get creative and package some of these picks to get back into the first round for a second selection. My prediction is that the Packers come away with both a top flight cornerback as well as an edge rusher. It would not be too surprising to see Green Bay pick up either Jackson from Iowa or Ward from Ohio State to team up with Kevin King on the outside with Randall manning the slot. While the cornerback situation would look much better than years past, they also will get the pass rush up to snuff. Watch them get a rusher in the likes of Marcus Davenport from UTSA or Harold Landry from Boston College.
Overall, the Packers cupboard is not bare. On defense, they have some talent at every level. An infusion of a top tier cornerback and edge rusher would allow them to move from the bottom of the league to somewhere near the top 10-15 defenses. With this improvement and #12 coming back for hopefully a healthy 2018, you know where the Green Bay Packers may end up when the dust settles. Adding Robinson or Moncrief to the offense and Wilkerson to the defense, the Packers will be trending in the right direction prior to the draft. With the right packaging of picks to move up, the Packers could significantly improve. Can I get a “Go Pack Go?” Let me know your thoughts on how Gutekunst should attack free agency and the draft to improve the roster.Robert Martin bleeds green and gold despite living in North Dakota, where many cheer for the purple. He is currently a writer for PackersTalk.com. You can follow him on Twitter @robertmartinPHD.