It’s beginning to look like the Green Bay Packers may be driven right out of the market for Nick Perry.
Despite having just one successful season among five, it looks like Perry might get paid like he’s a three-time Pro Bowler. Our guess is his annual salary could reach $12 million. That’s because a couple of drunken sailors have entered the fray.
The Indianapolis Colts and the New York Jets. Both teams are reportedly very interested in Perry. Both teams have more salary cap space than the Packers (by about $10 million). Thus, both teams can essentially overpay for a guy they hope is going to improve on his career year in the future.
There are a couple issues here for the Packers.
First, Perry turned in 52 tackles and 11 sacks in 14 games in 2016. Those are great numbers and Perry was arguably the team’s best defender last year. But do you pay someone $10-12 million per season for one good year? The Packers got burned doing that with Randall Cobb, didn’t they?
We love Cobb, but he’s getting No. 1 receiver money and hasn’t equaled his contract season in terms of production since signing that deal, which averages $10 million a year.
The Jets and Colts are just the type of desperate franchises to overpay for a guy like Perry and hope for the best. And maybe they’ll get six to eight sacks a season through the duration of the contract. The bottom line is, it is entirely possible that Perry has reached his ceiling in terms of production and we just witnessed it.
The other issue for the Packers is plugging that hole. Perry wasn’t just the team’s best pass rusher in 2016, he was also the Packers’ best run defender. So now, a team already in need of additional pass rushers is down their best guy AND they also get weaker in the running game.
Certainly not ideal for a team whose defense killed them in 2016.
However, if the market for Perry is out of whack, then the Packers would be wise to go out and find a cheaper alternative, who maybe hasn’t reached his ceiling yet. Or they could just focus on finding that No. 1 cornerback we all know they need.