Injuries were the story for Nick Perry again in 2018.
He has never played all 16 games in a season since being drafted in the first round back in 2012.
Let’s take a look back at his season.
2018 season in review
When the Packers offered Perry a new long-term deal following the 2016 season, they were taking a risk. Then-general manager Ted Thompson was hoping that Perry’s career-best production in 2016 was the sign of what was to come, not a one-off.
That year Perry led the team with 11 sacks and stayed healthy for most of the season, only missing two games.
But Perry only has 8.5 sacks in the two seasons since, including a career-low 1.5 sacks in 2018. He has also continued to struggle with injury, missing seven games this past season.
Looking ahead to 2019 season
Just two years after Perry signed a new five-year deal with the Green Bay Packers, general manager Brian Gutekunst has a tough decision to make.
Perry still has three years remaining on his contract, but the Packers could make a small cap saving by releasing him this offseason. According to Spotrac, Green Bay could free up $3.3 million in cap room.
But with Clay Matthews set to hit free agency, adding pass rushers would become an even bigger priority for the team if both Matthews and Perry left.
Maybe Gutekunst will decide to use free agency and the draft to get younger at edge rusher, but it’s also possible at least one of Perry or Matthews returns in 2019.
Perry is under contract for 2019, Matthews isn’t. That could be a factor in the decision. The Packers will hope Perry can hit double-digit sacks again next season, but if not they’d be able to free up almost $7 million by moving on next offseason.