2nd priority: Kenny Clark
Just as important as working out a new deal with Bakhtiari is to give Kenny Clark an extension. Clark is one of the best young defensive linemen in the NFL and he’ll only be 25 years old when he becomes a free agent next offseason. To draft and develop a star player, only to lose him to another team as he hits the prime of his career, would be a mistake.
And given all of the Packers’ problems defending the run, letting their best defensive tackle leave the building can’t happen. Clark deserves a big contract and the Packers should do all they can to make sure he re-signs.
According to NFL Next Gen Stats, only three players in the NFL finished inside the top five for both third down pressures and third down pressure rate. Two of those players were Aaron Donald and Justin Houston. The other was Kenny Clark.
Clark is one of the best interior pass rushers in football with 12 sacks and 16 quarterback hits over the past two seasons. The Packers’ focus needs to be surrounding him with more talent along the defensive line, not searching for his replacement. Gutekunst needs to get a deal done as soon as possible.