5 Free-Agent and Trade Options for the Green Bay Packers to Bolster Injured WRs
According to Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the team put Cobb on injured reserve/designated to return list on Tuesday due to a broken fibula. That means the nimble wideout isn't allowed to play until Week 15.
Let's take a look at free agent and trade possibilities for the Packers to bolster their receiving corps.
Devery Henderson is a 31-year-old wideout who wasn't re-signed by the New Orleans Saints this offseason. The Washington Redskins picked up the veteran deep threat, but he was unable to make Mike Shanahan's final roster.
In all likelihood, Henderson isn't nearly as fast as he once was. However, his specific NFL experience makes him, somewhat quietly, a nice fit for the Green Bay Packers.
Henderson never pieced together a 1,000-yard season as a professional. He caught 51 passes in 2009, a career high.
But Henderson played with Drew Brees, an elite quarterback, in a vertical-passing offense over the final six years of his eight-year stay with the Saints.
The former LSU star's career yards-per-reception average is a robust 17.9, and the Packers certainly love pushing the ball downfield.
This elder wideout would be a cheap, stand-in option who could use his downfield specialty to threaten opposing secondaries.
Jordy Nelson may be the best back-shoulder receiver in the NFL today.
His ball skills on the precision-based pitch-and-catch have been tremendous for the Packers and have led to an assortment of big plays when he hasn't necessarily been open.
Green Bay may be looking to add a wideout with a similar skill set to Randall Cobb, but if James Jones is out for a while, it'll need another big-bodied perimeter pass-catcher to alleviate some pressure—and coverage—from Nelson.
Edwards was cut by the New York Jets in training camp this summer, but he did suffer a leg injury that didn't help his chances to make the final roster.
If healthy, Edwards could potentially be a decent—and cheap—replacement who doesn't need to rely on his athleticism or speed anymore to be able to contribute in Green Bay's high-powered offense.
Though he struggled with drops in his NFL career, the 6'3", 214-pounder made many tremendous grabs in traffic.
Kenny Britt makes the list mainly due to the fact that the Tennessee Titans reportedly have discussed trading the talented wideout with a troubled past.
CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora wrote the following on October 13:
The Titans have talked to several NFL teams regarding struggling receiver Kenny Britt, according to sources with knowledge of the situation, but have been attempting to get a third-round pick for him, or a combination of picks equal to a third rounder.
Britt is 6'3" and 223 pounds and caught 45 passes for 775 yards with nine touchdowns in 2010.
He's dealt with a myriad of off-field issues and some injuries, and the former Rutgers star has only seven catches for 59 yards on the year.
In essence, a change of scenery would do him well, and based on his usage in the Titans offense this year—two snaps in Week 6 against the Seattle Seahawks—there's a decent chance the team would lower its asking price for the 25-year-old receiver.
Britt could be a decent insurance policy with some upside behind James Jones.
The New York Giants are 0-6, and many believe they should explore the possibility of trading star wide receiver Hakeem Nicks, a highly productive player whose contract is up at the end of the 2013 season.
On Monday, ESPN's Adam Schefter said this on NFL Insiders, per Rotoworld.com: "The Giants are willing to listen to offers for Hakeem Nicks."
However, Kimberly Jones of NFL.com tweeted a conflicting report the same day:
Am told there is no truth to rumors the Giants are shopping Hakeem Nicks or open to trading him.
Either way, as the October 29 trade deadline approaches, the Packers should at least consider making a trade for the talented wideout, as 29-year-old wideout James Jones is in the final year of his contract as well.
A second- or third-round pick as compensation for Nicks would be reasonable for both sides.
It'll be interesting to see if New York jumps at trade offers that could come its way over the next few weeks.
The ultimate addition for Green Bay would be Josh Gordon of the Cleveland Browns.
At 6'3" and 225 pounds, the 22-year-old wideout is a budding superstar and likely has a ridiculous amount of productive football in front of him.
However, Browns' CEO Joe Banner told USA Today's Jim Corbett:
We're absolutely not shopping Josh. We're not going to shop him and we don't have any plan or intention to trade him. … I personally—and I think anybody here—would be completely shocked if we ended up trading him.
We're not shopping Josh, have no plans to trade Josh
Then again, ESPN's Adam Schefter sent out this tweet on October 7:
Browns-49ers have discussed trade for WR Josh Gordon. Deal unlikely with Mario Manningham coming off PUP, Crabtree slated to return in Nov.
At this point, it seems like the Browns are content with keeping Gordon, but that doesn't mean the Packers aren't allowed to discuss a trade.
Similar to Nicks, Green Bay would be interested in Gordon with the future in mind.
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