Three Free Agent Wide Receivers the Packers Could Consider
Through the draft and free agency, the Packers have added five big targets to their passing attack. But although Jimmy Graham and Marcedes Lewis should give the Packers one of their better tight end groups of recent memory, it’s unlikely that any of the rookie receivers are going to have a starting-caliber impact this season.
With Jordy Nelson in Oakland, the Packers could still use a reliable presence at receiver. Assuming that player isn’t Geronimo Allison, that means another veteran signing is in order.
We’ve long campaigned for Dez Bryant, but as I outlined on this past week’s podcast, I understand the arguments against him, even if I’m not swayed. Assuming the Packers aren’t interested in Bryant, here’s a yes, a no, and a maybe on three other veteran receivers.
Yes - Jeremy Maclin
Coming off a torn ACL, Maclin blew up in 2014. Catching passes from pre-Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles and a post-butt fumble Mark Sanchez, Maclin caught 85 passes for 1,318 yards and 10 touchdowns. He signed a big deal with the Kansas City Chiefs the next offseason, but has never regained the lofty heights of 2014.
Though he’s not the track star he once was (college Jeremy was very fast), Maclin is still probably a better deep threat than any of the other established Packers’ receivers. After a frustrating season in Baltimore, Maclin could be worth a shot, if only to see if his wheels are still any good.
No - Eric Decker
Decker was stellar with Peyton Manning in Denver, surprisingly effective with the New York Jets, then underwhelming in his lone season with the Tennessee Titans. Though he’s been reliable throughout his career, he’s never been a deep threat. That’s been particularly evident the last few seasons; Decker hasn’t had a catch of longer than 35 yards since 2014.
If the Packers need an outside receiver to push defenses deep, it’s probably not Decker.
Maybe - Michael Floyd
Floyd is an exercise in counterfactuals. On the one hand, he has probably the best size/speed combination of any available free agent wide receiver. He’s big, he’s strong, and he’s fast, and he’s used that combination effectively in the past.
On the other, Floyd has a spotty history with both team and league discipline, and even when he’s been on the field, he hasn’t been a big hitter on offense in quite some time. He hasn’t broken 500 receiving yards since 2015 and managed just 10 catches in 11 games with the Vikings, a positively Treadwellian output.
Still, if the Packers are hoping to get bigger and faster at receiver, Floyd is both of those things. Put me down as a halfhearted maybe on bringing him in.