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Desmond Bishop

Happy guy

The Green Bay Packers have signed inside linebacker Desmond Bishop to a contract extension.

The deal is reportedly for $19 million over four years.

Bishop took over the starting job at inside linebacker after Nick Barnett’s season ended after week four, getting the first extensive action of his Packers’ career. He then proceeded to make Barnett an afterthought by completely outplaying him.

Bishop finished the season with 103 tackles, three sacks, two forced fumbles, an interception and a touchdown in 12 starts.

The extension raises an interesting question for the Packers. What are they going to do next season when Barnett and Brandon Chillar return from injury?

Chillar, who signed a contract extension last season, is likely to resume his role as a coverage specialist. Bishop doesn’t seem likely to give up his starting spot, nor should he be expected to — he’s earned it.

That leaves a limited role for either Barnett or A.J. Hawk as the other starter at inside linebacker. At least part of that decision will hinge on dollars.

Barnett is scheduled to make around $6 million in 2011. Hawk will make $10 million.

Hawk has played well, this season, but he’s not worth anywhere near $10 million a season. I’d argue Barnett isn’t worth $6 million a season, either.

If those guys want to stay with the Packers, they may have to renegotiate their deals and take on a lesser role than they’re used to.

Monty McMahon

Monty McMahon is one of the founders of Total Packers. He is probably the most famous graduate of UW-Oshkosh next to Jim Gantner.



  1. jeremy January 4, 2011

    Way to go TT.

    Bye AJ.

  2. Boner for Thompson January 4, 2011

    If he plays anything like he did this year for those four years this is an absolute steal. TT impresses once again.

  3. Tyko Steamboat January 4, 2011

    No-AJ will stay…its bye bye Barnett (mark my words)

    1. jeremy January 4, 2011

      That would probably be better, because Barnett is old and probably now is braking down. But, the only way TT will get him to take a pay cut is to extend him, and he’ll want about 4 years 30 million. The top tier guys, Dansby, Lewis, et all make about 8-9 mil per. Hawk is a Pro Bowl alternate with a lot of tackles under his belt who has yet to miss a game, and willingly does a lot of shit work on defense. The Packers will have to pay market value.

  4. Adam January 4, 2011

    Knew this day was coming sooner or later.

    So if you’re TT and you have to rid yourself of either a younger AJ @ $10M, or an older injury plagued Barnett @ $6M… which do you chose?

  5. lebowski January 4, 2011

    At the very least, let’s hope it spells the end of the Brady Poppinga experiment.

    1. ay hombre January 4, 2011

      Yeah no kidding! How much money did we waste on Poppinga…a lot.

  6. ay hombre January 4, 2011

    I think it’s an absolute no-brainer. With Hawk stepping up as the defensive leader and turning in easily his best season to date, I think Barnett is long gone. But yeah, not sure they can pay AJ 10 million a year either. Could they both be gone? If there’s one thing Capers system has taught us it’s that you can plug guys in and still be successful.

  7. iltarion January 4, 2011

    Hawk has been the leader of this defense ever since Barnett went down. It is a simple solution for Hawk. You renegotiate his contract, turning that $10 million into a signing bonus. I seriously think he’d take less money to stay here as long as we offer a fair contract and promise that he’ll see plenty of action. Hawk and Bishop have both covered well against TEs and RBs. If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it. You keep Hawk. Barnett will be gone. You even let Jenkins go if you have to. The guy can never stay healthy and you get Jolly back next season, assuming the NFL doesn’t tag on any additional suspensions.

    1. jeremy January 4, 2011

      If the NFL returns to free agency after four accrued seasons in the new CBA as everyone is expecting, Jolly will be a free agent when he is reinstated.

  8. Adam January 4, 2011

    I think Both Jolly and Jenkins are needed to add depth to the D-Line in key positions. Raji has proven himself this season to be starting replacement for Pickett barring injury. With Raji/Picket cloggin the middle, we need to keep quality ends to close the pocket and stifle the run. Jolly (pending his return) wont be commanding a high salary, he’ll be happy just to earning a paycheck again. Jenkins is still a premier rusher when he’s healthy, but having an economic staplpe behind him in Jolly would be a smart investment for a small price.

  9. AZ Pack January 4, 2011

    Good for Dez! As much as I’ve questioned AJ in the past, he’s had a pretty decent season this year. He is no where worth $10MM, however I am sure they can get him down and extend his deal for a few more years in the process. As for D-line… It is imperative that we sign Jenkins to an extension. He has to be the next person who gets extended as we do not have enough veterans on our defensive line. I think that out of anyone, James Jones is not going to get a new deal. Too bad, but he has had some key drops as well as a fumble which lost us a game in Chicago.

    Go Pack Go!

    1. ay hombre January 4, 2011

      I agree. James Jones has had every opportunity here and I’m tired of his drops, fumbles, etc. He’s managed to hang in there longer than I ever expected and I know we can do better.

  10. iltarion January 4, 2011

    I have always been a JJ fan, but his inconsistency has worn even on me. Even though his mistakes have hurt his value, he still has been the #2 WR for the Packers most the year and has shown he is capable of fulfilling that role. His wife is a teacher here in town, and so I don’t think he wants to go anywhere.

    On the other hand, TT is probably itching to draft another WR.

  11. Madcity Packer Fan January 4, 2011

    Draft a good running back and scrap everyone that wasting our time in the running game. Keep Starks and have him back Grant up next year to start off. Then work in a new power back.

  12. Jurgens January 5, 2011

    If we had to chose one to go, honestly, it would have to be Barnett. Hawk has not lived up to top 5 status, but he is a solid starter. Then again, we run a 3-4 and you cant have too many good LBs… and that depth came in handy this season. In other words, try to keep them all.

  13. DevilDon January 5, 2011

    Yep, it would be nice to keep them all, but real unlikely. I hate to say it but I think Hawk will sign an extension and level out that payoff and Barnett will be gone.
    I think that’s paramount in the NFL, gotta be available to play the games.
    Bishop and Hawk are our guys, maybe draft Clay’s brother to learn the ropes.