July 16, 2024

The Green Bay Packers have one of the NFL’s youngest rosters, but it is also one of the greatest. The Packers proved in 2023 that they are “ahead of schedule” in terms of overall roster development, thanks in large part to quarterback Jordan Love’s growth. However, as a large group of young players progresses, difficult roster decisions are necessary.

And the Packers could face a lot of them during the 2024 offseason.

General manager Brian Gutekunst and head coach Matt LaFleur must keep building around Jordan Love. It makes no sense to take backward steps in order to get forward. They should be aggressive, but they also need to discover the best long-term possibilities on both sides of the ball. Which players could be traded in 2024 and written out of the Packers’ current and future plans?

1. Jaire Alexander, CB

Alexander says he wants to remain with Packers

 

Cornerback Jaire Alexander is one guy who could be on the trading block this offseason. Based on Alexander’s on-field ability, this is certainly the most unlikely option on the list, but it may not be so farfetched when you examine some of the other hints.

For starters, Alexander has previously been the target of trade rumors. You can’t help but wonder if “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” applies here.

Furthermore, the Packers benched Alexander this season and placed him on a brief team suspension. So, what’s going on behind the scenes with Alexander and the team if things has escalated to a suspension?

 

 

General manager Brian Gutekunst has already spoken about the issue this offseason, but what is he supposed to say?

The Packers may potentially regain money for Jaire Alexander, which would be far too appealing to pass up. At the same time, this type of trade would weaken a position group that already need improvement.

This is improbable, but might happen if the appropriate deal comes up.

2. Aaron Jones, RB

Aaron Jones

 

This offseason, the Green Bay Packers may make some changes at the running back position. They have Aaron Jones under contract, while AJ Dillon is set to hit free agency in 2024.

Jones got injured early in the 2023 season and did not regain form until much later in the year. The question of whether one of those players will be on the squad in 2024 is a legitimate one. Jones will turn 30 this season and has a base salary of $11.1 million with a salary cap hit of $17.575 million.

The Packers may save roughly $12 million by trading him after June 1.

The trick here is that they could save the same amount of money by making Jones a post-June 1 cut earlier this offseason. Could they work out a deal with a team that wants to trade for Jones and take on more of his salary?

That could be the only way the Packers can obtain reasonable value for Jones rather than simply letting him go this offseason. And given how we watched him play late last season, why should Green Bay just discard him?

They’ll need the ideal trading partner to join them, as well as Jones’ cooperation, but this one is possible.

3. Christian Watson, WR

Christian Watson explains difficulty of playing with hamstring injury

 

Christian Watson, a previous second-round pick, is currently the subject of an extremely interesting discussion.

Watson has now played in the NFL for two seasons. The Packers traded up to obtain him in the early part of the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft, but Watson’s availability has not been his strongest suit as an NFL player thus far.

Watson has shown that he can be dynamic on the field. Unfortunately, he has not been the type of consistent game-changing weapon at the top of the receiving depth chart that the Green Bay Packers require.

Green Bay has some solid role players in Romeo Doubs, Jayden Reed, Dontayvion Wicks, and other young receivers, as well as Luke Musgrave and Tucker Kraft, two promising rookie tight ends. Green Bay is in a unique position of leverage to deal Christian Watson to the highest bidder if they are able to upgrade at the WR1 position.

The Packers don’t like giving up premium draft picks (who does?), especially good players like Watson, but if the perfect receiver comes along, the Packers may consider moving on from Watson. They need a legitimate go-to threat at receiver, and there are a few options in free agency, including Tee Higgins, Michael Pittman Jr., and Mike Evans.

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