Title: Packers Make Major Moves in Free Agency with Signings of Josh Jacobs and Xavier McKinney

7) Packers sign Josh Jacobs, Xavier McKinney

GM Brian Gutekunst did yeoman’s work on the first day of the negotiating period, stealing RB Josh Jacobs away from the Raiders and pouncing on an emerging star at safety in former Giant Xavier McKinney. I was pleasantly surprised because, as more of a draft-and-develop operation through the years, Green Bay hasn’t typically been too active in the pursuit of high-profile free agents. Two historic exceptions: Reggie White and Charles Woodson. Talking to Woodson on SiriusXM last week, he laughed at Jacobs following in his footsteps, leaving the Silver & Black for the Pack. And he raved about Green Bay’s moves.

I think Jacobs is one of the best running backs in the sport today. McKinney, still just 24 years old, could become a household name in Titletown.

8) Raiders hand Christian Wilkins the BAG

The Raiders lost Josh Jacobs, but they gained a true game-wrecker on the other side of the ball. I don’t want this signing to get lost in the shuffle of the free agency frenzy. Not that Christian Wilkins, a monster of a man and menace at defensive tackle, could ever get lost. And shoot, he just signed a $110 million contract, for God’s sake. But I still feel like the move isn’t getting the attention it deserves.

Wilkins, who’s fresh of a dynamic nine-sack campaign in Miami, is worth every single penny. He’s a disruptive force who was born to be a Raider. Putting him on the same defensive front as Maxx Crosby is nightmare fuel for opposing offenses.

9) Jets add four offensive starters and a legit backup quarterback

I know, I know: Mike Williams is coming off a torn ACL. But he suffered the injury way back in September, meaning he should already be relatively far along in the recovery process. I love him as a complement to young stud Garrett Wilson. Williams is a beast with great hands, height and route-running ability. Wilson has eclipsed 1,000 yards in each of his first two NFL seasons, despite playing with a series of underwhelming quarterbacks. The Jets could boast a top-five receiving duo in 2024, especially with the man returning under center.

Yes, this is a dream for a healthy Aaron Rodgers. And so is getting three new veteran starters on the offensive line.

Tyron Smith, like Williams, signed a one-year contract for this all-in season in New York. Also like Williams, Smith’s a star who just needs to stay healthy. If the 33-year-old left tackle plays 14 games, that’s a win. Joe Douglas also nabbed OT Morgan Moses and OG John Simpson to start up front. Suddenly, Gang Green has a viable O-line.

All of that wise wheeling and dealing gives Douglas options with the No. 10 overall pick. One of the Big Three receivers might fall to the Jets. Or they could take the initiative and go YOLO, as our guy Daniel Jeremiah just projected, trading up for Marvin Harrison Jr. They can take an offensive tackle, to build depth and long-term stability at the position. Or maybe Douglas wants to add more to a great defense. It’s all possible.

Meanwhile, Tyrod Taylor is the ultimate insurance policy if Rodgers gets hurt again. The veteran signal-caller is an obvious upgrade from the overmatched backups New York rolled out last season.

Nobody wants to hear it, but the Jets absolutely should make the playoffs. Everything that we thought could happen with this franchise last season should be in play for 2024.

2024-03-21 20:33:00
#Ravens #Falcons #Jets #among #teams #deserving #praise


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