Packers Star WR Traded Westward

Packers Star WR Traded Westward
Jan 22, 2022; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams (17) during a NFC Divisional playoff football game against the San Francisco 49ers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings won’t see Davante Adams again until the 2023 NFL season when AFC West opponents are on the rotational docket.

The Green Bay Packers traded Adams, who is considered by most as the best wide receiver in football, to the Las Vegas Raiders on Thursday night, acquiring two high draft picks in the deal.

A blockbuster indeed, Adams joined the Packers in 2014 from the 2nd Round of that year’s draft, ranking sixth in the league in receiving yards and second in receiving touchdowns since entry into the NFL.

Last week, the Packers franchise-tagged Adams, all but assuring his time in Green Bay was dwindling. Adams made it vociferously known he had no interest in playing under the franchise tag.

Sep 13, 2020; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams. Mandatory Credit: Dan Powers/Appleton Post-Crescent-USA TODAY NETWORK

The Packers get out from underneath a massive payday for Adams, who netted a $141.2 million contract upon the trade to Las Vegas.

Green Bay also loses a top wide receiver in the business, forced to explore free agency for a replacement. Players like Odell Beckham, Julio Jones, Jarvis Landry, and JuJu Smith-Schuster are available.

Adams will be 30 next Christmas Eve, showing no signs of slowing down to date. Aside from historical superstars like Jerry Rice, Tim Brown, and Larry Fitzgerald, the age-30 mark is generally when pass-catchers begin a performance decline. We shall see on Adams.

The Raiders quarterback is Derek Carr — often likened to Kirk Cousins in terms of talent and production — and he’ll now have three primary targets to spoil in Adams, Darren Waller, and Hunter Renfrow. Las Vegas reached the postseason for the first time since 2016 last season, dashing to the playoffs after the unexpected termination of head coach Jon Gruden.

According to multiple sources, Packers signal-caller Aaron Rodgers knew about Adams’ impending exodus, and the trade had no bearing on Rodgers’ decision to return to Green Bay after two months of waffling about his future. Plus, he already signed the deal, so suddenly backing out is improbable.

Adams’ contract level sets the market, an interesting marker to monitor as the Vikings must pay Justin Jefferson in two years. Based on the $28.5 million average annual salary allotted to Adams on Thursday, Jefferson is assured to command $30-$35 per season when extension talks heat up in 2023 or 2024.

Incidentally, Jefferson becomes the best wide receiver in the NFC North after the Adams swap to Las Vegas, if not the entire conference.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. His YouTube Channel, VikesNow, debuts in March 2022. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).