Was Packers Pass on WR Jordan Matthews the Right Call?
The Packers targeted free agent wide receiver Jordan Matthews, but he will not be coming to Green Bay. Instead, he’s signed with the New England Patriots, essentially for the league minimum.
Matthews has been a productive player when healthy, he's still young, and obviously very cheap. Did the Packers miss out? I don't think so.
Matthews has the physical hallmarks of a guy who looks like he could fill a Jordy Nelson-type role for the Packers. He’s 6-3 and 212 pounds, and he looks every bit like a guy who’s going to play big and strong and physical on the outside.
But that hasn’t really been his game in the NFL. He does pretty much all his work from the slot, so I think there’s a chance Matthews would have been a little bit redundant with the Packers since the Packers have a guy like Randall Cobb.
Yes, it was Matthews who led the league in yardage from the slot from 2014 through 2016, but the guy right behind him was Cobb, and I think with the addition of Jimmy Graham, there’s not going to be a whole lot of slot reps to go around, especially if you started sprinkling in Ty Montgomery as well.
Matthews also doesn't give you anything on special teams, and for a guy who's going to be at most a third option on offense, you do need some special teams contributions from him.
Ultimately, if he’s a guy the league agrees is only worth the veteran’s minimum, I don’t know if you’re missing out on all that much. Matthews said he was looking for a contract in the $4.5 million dollar range, and if the Patriots only signed him for the minimum, you have to think there wasn’t an overwhelming amount of interest in Matthews around the league.
For now, at least, it seems like the Packers made the right call.
This post is an adapted transcript of the most recent episode of Blue 58, a Packers podcast from The Power Sweep. Listen to the full episode below, and don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeartRadio, CastBox and more to stay on top of the best in Packers news and analysis.