That is is not a typo, folks. The Green Bay Packers have actually gone and signed a free agent who didn’t already play for the team. He is defensive end Julius Peppers, who was released by the Chicago Bears earlier this week.
Peppers got a three-year deal worth $30 million that is believed to be heavily incentive-laden. His signing bonus comes in at $7.5 million and the first year of the contract is worth $8.5 million, which would give Peppers a relatively low salary cap number in 2013.
This is the first time the Packers have made a high-profile free agency move since they signed Charles Woodson and Ryan Pickett back in 2006. Yes, it’s been eight years since Packers fans have been thrown a free agent bone in the offseason. Eight years of the front office jamming their heads up their asses when the free agency signing period rolled around. Eight years of the idiotic draft and develop mantra being tossed around Titletown like it was Dexter’s code.
So now the question is, who has replaced general manager Ted Thompson with this alien being?
We are frankly so overwhelmed with the fact the Packers have actually done something in the offseason for a change that we don’t even really care what it is. But here’s what it is anyway.
Let’s be perfectly honest. Peppers is a player in decline. He’s 34 and no one knows what he has left. The Packers signed him to a three-year deal and there’s no way he’ll still be playing in three years.
That being said, Peppers still had 46 tackles, 7.5 sacks and an interception last season. That’s 1.5 more sacks than Lamarr Houston, the guy the Bears signed to replace Peppers, had in 2013.
You shouldn’t be looking at Peppers as an every-down player. He’ll be a rotational player wherever he ends up playing and that’s the other thing.
Peppers has always played defensive end. He’s also always played in a 4-3. The Packers run a 3-4 and at 6-7, 287, Peppers may be a better fit for outside linebacker in Green Bay.
We suspect he’ll be utilized wherever he’s able to make the biggest impact, though. Unlike past years, the Packers actually seem committed to adapting their defense to their personnel rather than trying to make their personnel adapt to their defense.
A novel concept. One successful NFL teams have employed for decades…
The bottom line is, Julie Peppers should still be able to create havoc for opposing offenses, even at an advanced age.
By the way, the Packers have now essentially traded the Bears safety M.D. Jennings for Peppers. Hahahahahaha… the Bears… hahahahahaha…