Is Muhammad Wilkerson Worth Another Shot?

Defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson came to Green Bay hoping to revive his career and restore his perception around the league. When things went sour after seven seasons with the New York Jets, Wilkerson needed a fresh start so the Packers offered him a one-year 5$ million dollar prove it deal. However, in week three against the Washington Redskins, he suffered a brutal ankle injury that ended his bounce-back season.

Soon Green Bay will have a tough decision on their hands on whether or not to re-sign the 29-year-old pass rusher. At one point Wilkerson was one of the top defensive ends in the league reaching double-digit sack totals in 2013 and 2015. But now there’s a reason to believe his best days are behind him.

When Wilkerson came to the Packers he was joining a studded group of defensive lineman that included Kenny Clark and Mike Daniels. Assuming Wilkerson was refocused, this group appeared to be set for a deadly 2018 campaign.

Wilkerson started the first three games of the season before getting hurt but his impact was marginal. Five tackles and four quarterback hurries resulting in zero sacks gave a dull outlook for what might have happened had he stayed healthy.

Third-year defensive end Dean Lowry did a solid job starting eight of the remaining 13 games. Lowry has a similar body type to Wilkerson but he lacks the explosiveness of the former Jets Pro-Bowler. Lowry finished the year totaling 44 tackles and three sacks.

The Packers have plenty of depth along their defensive front including 2017 third rounder Montravius Adams and undrafted free agent Tyler Lancaster who had a strong ending to his first NFL season. If Wilkerson would like another shot in Green Bay, he would have to accept a deal similar to the one he signed last offseason.

That is if there is a mutual interest and the Packers don’t want to move on with their developing young talent.


Brandon Carwile was a Cheesehead at birth. His dad grew up attending games at Lambeau and passed on the legacy. He has covered the Packers for over five years and currently works with Find him on twitter at @PackerScribe.



15 thoughts on “Is Muhammad Wilkerson Worth Another Shot?

  1. I hesitate to think he’s worth the same money, coming off a tough injury. If he wants to return, he’ll have to take less.

  2. What is the ideal, or by consensus thought, number of DL to have in the 54 when playing a 3:4?

    1. We generally have 5 active on gameday with another on the 53 man roster and at least one more on the PS. Most of the time we play with only two on the field at a time.
      Last year, we started with Daniels, Clark, Wilkerson, Lowry, and Adams as our five actives. Only Lowry and Adams survived. When Wilkerson went down, we activated Lancaster, who finished with the 4th most DL snaps.
      Personally, I’d move on with Wilkerson and add a Top 100 guy in the draft.

      1. Thank you. So really we do not need to go to FA for a big name as we have developed a couple (Adams and Lancaster) who can play more. Just draft a DT to develop?

  3. As we saw this year, DL is a position often hit by injuries. That said, $5 million is a lot to invest in a player that has been suffered a number of injuries the last few years.

    Chances are the Packers are going to invest a high pick on a pass rusher, either DE or OLB. I’d rather spend Wilkerson’s money on a safety or OL and stay with players like Fadol Brown, Looney, Lancaster, Lowry & Adams along with a player taken later in the draft.

  4. Daniels, Clark, Lowry, Adams…..all DL that are currently under contract.
    We usually have 5 on the gameday roster, and another one on the 53 inactive, plus one on the PS.
    So that’s room for three. Wilkerson isn’t eligible for practice squad, so he’d count against the 53. That leaves room for one more, like maybe Lancaster or a good draft pick.
    Truly, I have no issue with Wilkerson being invited back to camp to compete for a roster spot. Vet minimum with a bonus for every active game.
    My preference would be to add a DL from the Top 100 picks. Lowry is in his contract year. Daniels, too. Adams needs to improve more before we can count on him.

  5. Vets min / prove it deal if his hearts in it! Yes he’s worth bringing back if healthy.

  6. Not much of an impact player anymore. Like him, but we need more speed and strength at the position. Perhaps lower cost may keep him around?

  7. Both Wilkerson and Daniels are maybes to me. Both fill a hole, bit didn’t scare anyone. We may keep both at lower cost only for the rotation. We need two younger, quicker lineman.

  8. Daniels talks a lot, now prove it. Get push and get off your blocks.

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