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This Was Your Last Chance: Starring the Green Bay Packers


(Image credit Dan Powers/USA Today Sports)


Written by: Nicholas Mullick


I am writing this moments after the game has ended when the San Francisco 49ers upset the Green Bay Packers 13-10. The Green Bay Packers have officially been eliminated and will not play in Superbowl 56. That was an absolute shock to me as I thought the Packers were going to have a deep playoff push and play in the NFC Championship game. Now as a result of this loss all I have to say is that it is basically over for the Green Bay Packers. They are now in the same spot where the New Orleans Saints were last season were on their last chances and both needed to win a Superbowl. They failed to do so and now the Packers are out of chances because it all goes downhill from here. I will describe it in this article.


Salary Cap Troubles

Even though it is playoff time I always look at the salary cap for each team as preparation for when analyzing each team during the offseason/free agency period. So I was looking at Spotrac.com and guess which team in the NFL has the second-lowest amount of cap space heading into the offseason. If you guessed the Green Bay Packers you are correct. According to Spotrac.com, the Green Bay Packers are 38.4 million dollars under the salary cap. This is not good at all as the team will be limited in adding in the offseason to build the team in the offseason especially.


Free Agents

So once I looked at the salary cap, I wondered who the Green Bay Packers free agents would be entering the offseason. Well, the Packers have a total of 23 players that will be free agents unless signed (Which I doubt because of their salary cap). There are a lot of notable names on this list including WR Davante Adams, WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling, WR Allen Lazard, WR Equanimeous St.Brown, TE Robert Tonyan, OL Dennis Kelly, OL Lucas Patrick, LB De'Vondre Campbell, CB Kevin King, CB Isaac Yiadom, CB Rasul Douglas, S Henry Black, and P Corey Bojorquez. That is a lot of talented players that are going to hit free agency. With limited resources and being below the salary cap I doubt that the Packers are going to re-sign them to another contract. Speaking of which, that is not the only big talent that will be gone during the offseason.


Aaron Rodgers is likely gone

Even though he is technically not a Free Agent I doubt that QB Aaron Rodgers will be returning to the Packers during the 2022 season. Especially with how the last offseason turned out the signs were there that it was time to move on as they restructured his contract. Heck with the salary cap that they have it is likely in order to improve it that the Packers will likely be trading Rodgers to another team if he wants to continue playing football. I say if because there is speculation that Aaron Rodgers is considering retiring from the NFL as a whole. I won't be shocked if he does especially with the whole Covid-19 vaccination controversy that occurred with him and that he is 38 years old. Rodgers may no longer want to deal with the injuries that come with playing football. The point is that I doubt Rodgers will play with the Green Bay Packers so they will have to hope that Jordan Love has developed well. But seeing how he has played he has not impressed at all and the Packers offense will suffer as a result of Rodgers leaving the team. Where Rodgers goes I have no idea? But I doubt he is a Green Bay Packer next season.


Coaching Concerns

One thing's for sure after this game and that is the entire Special Teams coaching staff has absolutely got to go. Way too many times have the Packers been a disaster for multiple years on special teams. Heck, the Packers only had 10 men on the field for the final field goal after the team called a timeout, which is absolutely unacceptable. That is not only on the special teams coordinator but on the head coach as well. To make it worse ​​Matt LaFleur has been complacent in many special teams disasters all year. I would not be shocked if Maurice Drayton is fired from the Packers in a few days or weeks. Another thing I took note of in this game is simple: How in the world is Nathaniel Hackett a head coaching candidate? Some of the offensive schemes and play-calling were just horrendous in this game. Plus did people forget about how bad his tenure was with the Jaguars after that one-year wonder season where the Jaguars went to the AFC Championship? This game absolutely exposed him as well, but I guarantee one team is going to hire him as the head coach during the next few weeks.


Conclusion

You know there was a part of me that thought the Green Bay Packers were going to make their last chance count and give Aaron Rodgers his second ring in the NFL. But that's not happening now and all I got to say to the Packers is simple “You Are Done’’. Salary wise you can’t make this team better, star players are leaving, the team will downgrade at QB when Rodgers is gone, there are plenty of coaching changes that might be made, and finally, this may now take years for the Green Bay Packers to rebuild. Honestly, if I am Green Bay I would blow it up. This is no quick fix and your back scenario, it is a multi-year rebuild and it has to start in the offseason. I wish GM Brian Gutekunst and the Green Bay Packers organization luck because tough decisions are going to have to be made for this team. I hate to say this but Green Bay this was your last chance to get a Super Bowl with Aaron Rodgers.

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