But is this year different? We’ve seen Packers GM Ted Thompson use the trade extensively during the NFL Draft – moving up, moving down – but will he actually break out of his mold and use the trade between now and the end of October?
Oh, there have been some trades throughout the franchise’ history that have marked the team’s destiny – who could forget Dan Devine trading for MacArthur Lane and announcing it at the Packers Shareholders meeting? How about the trade that brought a washed up quarterback John Hadl to Green Bay? Or how about Ron Wolf trading a first round draft selection to Atlanta for a guy by the name of Brett Favre – and then listening as Packers Nation collectively shouted “WHO?”
Yes, the draft has been utilized in many different way throughout Packers history, but Thompson hasn’t made a habit of using the option very often outside of the draft.
But let’s take the leap of faith and consider for a moment that Thompson may consider the trade option.
Just who would or could he trade?
Stay with me here and let me know how you feel about each of these …
James Starks: Of all the Packers on today’s roster, Starks would seem the most likely to be tabbed for a trade. After all, his name was immediately reported at the start of the draft as being available. Though Thompson was involved in several trades during Draft weekend, none of them involved Starks. But with the drafting of Eddie Lacy and Johnathan Franklin and the emergence of undrafted free agent Angelo Pease, Starks seems to be the most expendable. Throw in DuJuan Harris and Alex Green and suddenly the Packers have a full house backfield. Someone’s got to go … will it be Starks?
Jermichael Finley: Here we go again … nobody’s ever happy with Finley. In fact, even those who love him have reservations about him as a Green Bay Packer. Regardless of whether he has an All-Pro year or not, the fact of the matter is that Finley has only one more season in Green and Gold. I can’t imagine the Packers digging that deep into their pockets for a player who has all the talent in the world but has only marginal statistics to show for it. Why not take a look at what you can get for the guy now? At least get something for him – maybe a second- or third-rounder? The Packers have plenty of bodies at the position, but nobody who brings the potential for star quality to the field like Finley. If that wasn’t the case, he would have been gone long ago. The Packers are going to have to find a replacement for him sooner or later. Maybe it should be sooner than later.
Sam Shields: Here is another player who, like Finley, might just walk after this season, so why not deal him now? The Packers depth at cornerback is well documented. While one can argue that you can’t have enough starter-quality cornerbacks in this league, the Packers will have to face the music at the end of the year anyway, so why not trade him away for a pick or two that will add even greater depth to the team? Shields, who is playing on his unrestricted free agent tender, will be fighting for a starting job at cornerback. He may just get beat out with the likes of Casey Hayward, Davon House, Tramon Williams, and even rookie Micah Hyde vying for playing time. With Shields’ stock at an all-time high, now would be the time to deal him.
A.J. Hawk: Everyone loves A.J. Hawk, the person. How can you not like a guy who agrees to a contract restructuring that will pay him much less over the course of his contract. He seems like the type of player who would play for nothing. He’s a standup leader in the locker room and is involved heavily in the community. How could you trade a guy like that? On the field, he’s been steady and consistent, but far from the impact player who everyone expected as a high first round draft selection. Right now he’s penciled in as one of the starters at inside linebacker, but there are other players – such as Jamari Lattimore, Terrell Manning, and Robert Francois – who will get a legitimate look during training camp. If any of those guys are deserving of a starting role, Hawk may become expendable. There would be plenty of teams who would be interested if the Packers went that route.
So, what do you think, Packers fans. Should the Packers jump into the trade market? Let us know what you think.