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Inbox: They're bringing everybody back

It’s fascinating how it all came to be

G/T Elgton Jenkins
G/T Elgton Jenkins

Ric from Longmont, CO

Of course Insider Inbox boot camp would have a math class. Anyone caught attending would be banned.

And once again we're off, so we might as well get going. Hope everyone had a nice Easter weekend.

Mike from New Orleans, LA

Do you release Prospect Primers in any particular order? Would you be more proud if the Pack selected Myles Murphy (PP Ep. 1 '23) over, say Peter Skoronski (PP Ep. 5 '23)?

Not at all. Once we get the list of players put together, the order is pretty random, just mixing up schools and positions along the way. For some players, it takes longer for our video department to get its hands on highlights and such, so those guys get pushed toward the back of the line.

Terrance from Sun Prairie, WI

What can the offense do to help out Jordan Love this year?

Commit to developing one of the better running games in the league. The Packers have the linemen and the backs to do it, and that'll help Love more than anything else.

Gary from Sheboygan, WI

Morning Insiders. I think the fans who want the Packers to trade back for more draft picks may be a little disappointed this year. With the tight cap space the team may not have the extra cash to pay for more players.

That's not really much of a factor unless you're talking about extra first-round picks, because the contracts from the second round on down aren't going to create a huge cap crunch. When it's all said and done, only 53 can be on the roster. These days, even an extra first-round pick isn't the financial burden it was pre-2011. Not even close.

William from West Covina, CA

Do you think that the Jets will wait. until they pick in the first round before completing the deal with the Packers? Perhaps they'd wait to see if a favored QB drops to them.

The Jets are committed to Aaron Rodgers. Their GM publicly said so the other night. They aren't using their first-round draft pick on a rookie QB. They want to get the deal for Rodgers done without parting with that first-round pick, and then they want one of this draft's top offensive tackles to be there at No. 13. I believe that's their plan.

Eric from Springfield, VA

Is Reggie's signature move, tossing a blocker away with one arm, illegal or possible in today's NFL?

There's been no rule change to make the hump move illegal if that's what you're asking. Not everyone has the requisite strength and technique to succeed with it, though.

Ronald from Edison, NJ

Did we lose any offensive linemen?

No. The Packers had no linemen headed for unrestricted free agency, primarily because they gave Elgton Jenkins a big contract extension last December. They're bringing everybody back in that position group that ended last season on the roster, provided Yosh Nijman signs his RFA tender and/or isn't pursued by other teams.

Team photographer Evan Siegle shares his favorite photos from the 2022 Green Bay Packers season.

Dick from Four Oaks, NC

Any idea what the Jets' cap situation was before they started signing all of the new free agents and what it is after signing them? How can they possibly have enough space left to include Rodgers? They must have had tons of cap space going into this signing period.

They've been creating some space with contract restructures, and they can do more of that as well as possibly release a high-priced player or two if they need room. Rodgers will count roughly $16M on their cap in 2023, which isn't a huge amount. Their biggest '23 cap charge amongst the free agents they signed comes from Lazard, whose deal was structured so the first-year cap hit is only about $3M.

Mike from Hammond, IN

Are the Lions good enough to win the division?

I'm with Wes in that I think that primarily depends on Goff at QB, and how well they replace their touchdown machine in the backfield last season, Jamaal Williams. But it starts with Goff. He went to Pro Bowls with the Rams in 2017-18 with 100 passer ratings. Then over the next two seasons he threw just 42 TD passes with 29 INTs. He earned another Pro Bowl bid last year with the Lions and got his passer rating near triple digits again (99.3, 29 TDs, seven INTs). Is he establishing a new baseline for his level of play, or is he going to regress again? That's the question.

Eric from Woodbury, MN

Not trying to start anything w/Brian from Urbana, IL, but Manning had Dallas Clark, Roethlisberger had Heath Miller, and Aikman had Jay Novacek. While these guys are not in the HOF, they were all Pro Bowl-level talents in their prime. 100% agree with the concept there is more than one way to build an offense though. You can't have Pro Bowlers everywhere in the cap era. As fans, we need to understand that this isn't a video game where you can pluck a perfect roster on established ratings.

Amen to all of that.

Johnny from Madison, WI

Is it common for core special-teams players to get a second contract, or do teams tend to prefer young guys that have more potential to develop?

For a long time in Green Bay, it was the latter. Jarrett Bush was one of the only core special-teamers that hung around, and there was constant turnover at other special-teams spots, primarily via draft picks. The last couple years have shown the Packers are changing their stripes in this area.

James from Chicago, IL

My memory may not be 100% accurate here, but Ron Wolf was the personnel director with Jets in 1991. I recall an interview where he said the Jets were going to draft Favre with the 35th pick, but the Falcons took him at 34. That sounds, to me, like Ron Wolf knew the moment he arrived at 1265 Lombardi he wanted Favre on his team. Is it likely that one of the reasons he may have chosen the Green Bay job is that extra first-round pick and he knew he'd be able to get his franchise QB?

Not really, but you raise an interesting point as to what might've happened or not happened. First off, Wolf had Favre as the top-rated player in the entire 1991 draft, and he would have chosen him for the Jets if he'd owned a first-round pick that year. Wolf had the 34th pick high in the second round, and the Falcons took Favre at 33, so Wolf instead chose Louisville QB Browning Nagle, who started all of 14 NFL games and threw eight TD passes with 20 interceptions. Even the Hall of Fame GMs miss badly sometimes, folks. As for the Green Bay job, Wolf took it because Harlan promised him full autonomy over the football operation. No meddling from the executive committee or anyone else, Harlan included. So Wolf knew he'd have the authority to make any trade he wanted, like the one for Favre, without anyone stopping him. If Wolf and the Packers had owned only one first-round pick in '92 instead of two, would he still have made the deal for Favre? Somehow I think he'd have found a way, though I'm not sure he'd have traded the No. 5 overall pick (which is what he had, while the No. 17 pick he traded was the extra one from Green Bay's draft-day trade with Philly the year before). Maybe he would've traded back from 5 for a package of picks and then worked a deal with Atlanta for Favre, something like that. Anyway, it's fascinating how it all came to be.

Rod from Longwood, FL

I've been looking at players likely available at 15: the best receiving tight ends in college football, two very good WRs, a stud edge rusher (maybe), and the highest rated S in the draft. Where do you start? Scrap the mock drafts and leave it to the GM and brain trust. Ciao.

As I always say, we never really know what the Packers think of these various prospects until draft night and decisions are made based on who is available.

Mike from Ames, IA

Looking at this year's draft, have you found a "Vontae Mack, no matter what" that you would take over anyone?

If you're asking that from the perspective of someone realistically lasting until 15 and just too good to pass up, I was doing some legwork on our upcoming Prospect Primer on Darnell Wright, the offensive tackle from Tennessee. The more I looked into him, the less I believe he'll be there at 15, but he's a big man with a lot to like.

Shawn from Kissimmee, FL

If a top-three QB is still available at pick 15, does GB either A: draft the QB, B: trade back for extra draft capital to a QB-needy team willing to give up some of their farm, or C: stay put and draft their guy at that spot and keep it moving?

I think it would depend on how strongly they feel about their best guy on the board at that point, and on what's being offered in a trade. There are 10 minutes on the clock to explore and weigh all the options.

Jim from Toledo, OH

It never ceases to amaze me how unsatisfied fans can be. Enjoy the journey and remember that good fortune is required to win. In 2010, David Akers missed two field goals inside 40 yards in the WC game the Packers won 21-16. Rodgers made a saving tackle on Urlacher in the NFCCG that prevented a pick-six and a huge momentum shift. In the Super Bowl, Matthews stripped Mendenhall and with the recovery led to another TD drive and a win. We got the breaks that year, enjoy the Lombardi they did win.

Akers has such an interesting place as an opponent in Packers history. He kicked the longest field goal ever at Lambeau Field, and he helped launch a championship run for Green Bay.

Kirk from West Allis, WI

Who is going to win the Super Bowl?

Whichever team plays the best on Feb. 11, 2024. Happy Monday.

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