Plenty of conflicting reports out there on the No. 1 cornerback on the free agent market, Trumaine Johnson.
First, it should be pointed out that the majority of the top free agent corners already have agreements in place. Malcolm Butler is joining the Tennessee Titans. Aaron Colvin is joining the Houston Texans. Bashaud Breeland is joining the Carolina Panthers.
No word yet on where Johnson will sign, although his suitors were said to be the Green Bay Packers, Oakland Raiders and Cleveland Browns. Other reports have suggested the Raiders have bowed out because the price tag got too high. If you believe Tom Silverstein, the Packers were never in the conversation, despite the gaping hole they have at cornerback.
In case you wondering, the #Packers will not be signing CB Trumaine Johnson. They were not in the running for him before the Graham signing. That deal will be way beyond their means.
— Tom Silverstein (@TomSilverstein) March 13, 2018
And then there was this cryptic proclamation earlier in the day.
FWIW, a sources has just told me that “the #Packers aren’t done…stay tuned”
— Joe Arrigo (@joearrigo) March 13, 2018
Arrigo has proven to be pretty accurate through these first two days of free agency tampering. The first thing I thought was Johnson. The logical choice to shore up the weakest position the Packers have.
The Packers aren’t likely to get into a bidding war with the Browns, however. Those turds are flush with salary cap space. The Packers are not. That still brings up the obvious question, though.
What in the hell are the Packers going to do at the cornerback position?
Personally, I still like old man Tramon Williams, even if he’s just a stopgap solution for a year. Williams had a hell of year with the Arizona Cardinals in 2017 after the Browns tried to ruin him.
There’s always the draft, of course, but do the Packers want to be essentially forced to take a cornerback at No. 14 overall? Wouldn’t they rather tell us about “best player available?”
It now appears E.J. Gaines, soon to be a former member of the Buffalo Bills, might be the best option. Gaines missed all of 2015 because of injuries. He’s played for both the Rams and Bills in his four years in the league. He’s never played in all 16 games and managed only 11 the past two years. So, clearly an injury risk, which the Packers have plenty of already. Gaines’ 2017 stats in those 11 games — 59 tackles, one interceptions, nine passes defended and three forced fumbles.
When he’s on the field, he’s solid. Gaines garnered an 86.6 grade from Pro Football Focus in 2017.
We’ll see what happens.