What Happens Now? Talk Stops Between Packers and TE Jared Cook

Contract talks have broken down between the Packers and tight end Jared Cook, one of their highest priority free agents.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter broke news of the breakdown this morning.

We’d never be the first to advocate for panic, but this certainly doesn't seem good for the Packers at first blush.

Both sides have plenty of incentive to get a deal done. Aaron Rodgers is by far the best quarterback Cook has ever had the opportunity to play with, and the big tight end enjoyed football for the first time in a long time last year. That’s not an exaggeration, he said it himself.

The Packers, too, had plenty of reason to re-sign Cook. The offense was miles better with Cook available and they really only seemed fully in-sync when his field stretching speed and size was on the field.

What happens next for Jared Cook?

Cook’s now expected to visit other teams, but that may not mean he’s done with the Packers. Green Bay is willing to let players test the market, if only to see what sort of numbers other teams are willing to throw around. If other teams aren’t willing to throw big money Cook’s way, he could make his way back to the Packers.

It’s also possible the Packers would be interested in another high end tight end. Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett is an unrestricted free agent, and though he’s expected to command a higher price than Cook, he’s also a significantly better player.

Bear in mind also that this year’s draft class is chock full of big, athletic pass catchers. If contracts going to tight ends prove to be too rich all together, the Packers still have options.