Packers free agency 2021: Don’t expect Kevin King back next season

Green Bay Packers, Kevin King (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Kevin King (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

It would be unfair to judge Kevin King‘s career with the Green Bay Packers on one bad performance.

King’s struggles in the NFC Championship Game remain fresh in Packers fans’ minds, and unfortunately it might be his final game for Green Bay. King is set to hit free agency next season.

Overall, King has been a solid starter in Green Bay’s secondary. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t time to make a fresh start opposite Jaire Alexander.

King has struggled to stay healthy over the past four years, missing a total of 23 games. That includes five games he missed in 2020. King has never completed all 16 games in the regular season.

His healthiest season was also his best. In 2019, King played in 15 games, made a team-best five interceptions as well as a career-best 15 pass defenses. It was an impressive year for King, who played an important part in the team’s success with many memorable plays at crucial moments.

Unfortunately, King was unable to replicate this form in 2020. According to Pro Football Reference, he allowed 63.2 percent of passes to be completed in his coverage, with quarterbacks earning a 96.2 passer rating throwing his way. He had zero interceptions and five pass defenses.

King did come up with one key turnover, recovering a fumble near the goal-line and returning it 48 yards when the Carolina Panthers looked set to score a touchdown.

Even if the Packers want to bring King back, it won’t be easy to pull off given their salary cap situation. The team is going to need to release players, restructure deals, and/or backload a contract extension just to get under the salary cap. It will take a lot of work to get in position to either re-sign a player or bring in a free agent from elsewhere.

Maybe the Packers will surprise us, but my guess is King will be playing for another team in 2021.