The Packers Are Asking Rodgers to do More with Less

Jan 22, 2022; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; San Francisco 49ers defensive back Dontae Johnson (27) and defensive back K’Waun Williams (24) tackle Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams (17) during the NFC Divisional playoff football game at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Wm. Glasheen/USA TODAY NETWORK

If the Vikings are to take the NFC North, it’ll be because they’ve overcome the Packers. Such a scenario could come to fruition through a variety of factors. Of course, we’re all hoping Minnesota shows tremendous growth, and yet it’s hard to overlook the things Green Bay has done (and hasn’t done) during the offseason.

In recent years, much of the media chatter has focused on Green Bay’s unwillingness to give Aaron Rodgers more receiving weapons. Now, they have offered him some strong defensive play. They’ve also given him a great offensive line, running backs, and (until recently) WR1. Nevertheless, it’s fair to wonder about their decision to draft Jordan Love instead of, say, Tee Higgins.

Heading into the most recent draft, many assumed that replacing Adams – who can’t be replaced with one player – would mean snagging a first-round receiver. That didn’t occur. Instead, both first-round selections went to the defensive side of the ball.

By overlooking receiver in the opening round, GM Brian Gutekunst felt compelled to pull off a deal with Minnesota in the second (as we’ve discussed). They packaged their 53rd and 59th picks to hop up to 34th, snagging Christian Watson in the process. Gutekunst explains his rookie WR has great size and speed, allowing him to replace Marquez Valdes-Scantling: “That’s certainly going to give us something to take the top off the defense. With MVS leaving in free agency, that will replace that I think initially.”

Replacing MVS isn’t a bad goal, and yet there is still a Davante-Adams-sized hole in that offense. Perhaps they’ll sign Odell Beckham Jr. Other players to consider are Julio Jones, Jarvis Landry, Cole Beasley, Will Fuller, and Adam Humphries.

Receiver talent remains; none will be a one-to-one replacement for Adams.

At this stage, then, it appears that the Packers are asking Rodgers to do more with less, making the Vikings’ pursuit of the North more fathomable. Without question, Green Bay has been the superior team lately. Nevertheless, their pursuit of the Super Bowl has fallen short in recent seasons, and failing to equip the offense with more weapons might hinder their capacity to make 2022 their year.