Unlike last offseason, not much has been said about Green Bay Packers defensive tackle B.J. Raji.
That will happen when you don’t play a down all season. Raji tore a biceps tendon during training camp and missed the entire year, so there isn’t much to say about the big man at the moment.
Last offseason was a different story.
Raji entered free agency after his worst season as a pro — a laughable 19 tackles and no sacks. Despite that truly terrible stat line, Raji went ahead and tested free agency (reportedly turning down a fairly lucrative Packers’ offer during the season). Surprisingly, probably to only him and his agent, his phone didn’t ring and he ended up taking a one-year, $4 million deal to return to the Packers.
This offseason, Raji has even less leverage.
The difference is, he probably understands the dynamics of his situation a little better this time around.
That should make re-signing the former first-round pick a mere formality if the Packers want him back and it appears they do. According to Packer Report, the Packers are indeed expected to bring Raji back for another go.
And why not?
The former first-round pick will come cheap and he’ll again have something to prove. After being shown the harsh reality that he actually needed to earn his money last offseason, Raji was a madman in camp.
If he can duplicate that effort and stay healthy, the Packers will have themselves a very solid contributor at a very cheap price.
Assuming Letroy Guion doesn’t end up in prison and the Packers bring him back, they suddenly have a very strong tandem in the middle of their defensive line.
Little risk. High reward.