The Packers Apparently Tried to Trade for Everybody

The Packers Apparently Tried to Trade for Everybody
Oct 16, 2022; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur reacts to a call during the fourth quarter against the New York Jets at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports.

The Green Bay Packers rank 23rd in the NFL per offensive EPA/Play through eight weeks of 2022. In 2021, they ranked third in the same metric.

And in efforts to fix the glitch, Green Bay’s front office evidently attempted to pull the trigger on multiple trades for notable pass-catchers before the NFL’s November 1st trade deadline — and then just didn’t get it done.

On Sunday morning, the who’s who of NFL insiders collectively reported Green Bay’s futile efforts to acquire big-name wide receivers and tight ends, almost in a coordinated effort to let Packers loyalists know “they tried.”

Oct 16, 2022; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports.

In March, the Packers traded five-time Pro Bowl WR Davante Adams to the Las Vegas Raiders for what turned out to be Christian Watson (WR) and Quay Walker (LB). The offense hasn’t been the same.

Mere hours before Green Bay travels to Detroit for a Week 9 showdown, ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted, “The Green Bay Packers made aggressive attempts to acquire Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Chase Claypool as well as Las Vegas Raiders tight end Darren Waller, league sources told ESPN.”

NFL Network’s Ian Rapaport echoed the Schefter tweet minutes later, adding Carolina Panthers WR D.J. Moore to the mix, “The Packers also made an offer on Chase Claypool and made calls on Panthers WR DJ Moore — along with Waller. But no deals transpired.”

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool. © Sam Greene/The Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC.

On the same morning, NFL insider Dov Kleiman mentioned the Packers “also reportedly tried to trade for Broncos WR Jerry Jeudy.”

So, if you’re keeping track on the bingo board, that’s all of these players on the Packers radar, to no avail:

  • Chase Claypool (WR)
  • Jerry Jeudy (WR)
  • D.J. Moore (WR)
  • Darren Waller (TE)

Claypool ended up with the Chicago Bears, who sent a 2nd-Round pick to the Pittsburgh Steelers for the young wideout. The other three stayed put.

Mike Florio from Pro Football Talk opined on the Packers swings-and-misses, “As the theory that was suggested (by me) goes, the Packers simply want quarterback Aaron Rodgers to think they’re trying. Even if the effort is half-assed, half-hearted, and/or hoof-hearted.”

Florio’s theory doesn’t seem too wild because, well, why inject so many “almost trades” into the national discussion? The seemingly collaborative drop of trade intentions feels like appeasement to Rodgers or fans of the franchise.

Per FiveThirtyEight, Green Bay has a 17% chance of reaching the playoffs. If they are to defy odds and snag a wildcard berth or even catch up with the Minnesota Vikings for the NFC North crown, they’ll do it without a hotshot pass-catcher. But Packers brass for damn sure wants you to know they tried.

The Vikings play the Packers at Lambeau Field on New Year’s Day.