Should the Packers re-sign TE Robert Tonyan in 2022?

Green Bay Packers, Robert Tonyan - Mandatory Credit: Dan Powers-USA TODAY NETWORK
Green Bay Packers, Robert Tonyan - Mandatory Credit: Dan Powers-USA TODAY NETWORK /

The Green Bay Packers were dealt another injury blow in a Thursday night game against the Arizona Cardinals two weeks ago.

In the third quarter, Robert Tonyan caught a game-altering 33-yard pass but immediately went to the ground in pain shortly after. It was revealed that Tonyan tore his ACL and would be out for at least the remainder of the 2021 season.

Tonyan’s production had been on a downtrend compared to last season, which is due to a multitude of reasons. The main reasons I would chalk it up to are Marcedes Lewis is a bigger contributor this year and Tonyan isn’t getting open as much as he did during the 2020 campaign.

Through eight weeks, Tonyan was on pace to record 36 catches for 408 yards and four touchdowns. If you don’t remember Big Bob’s numbers from last year, they were: 52 catches, 586 yards, and 11 touchdowns.

This is immensely disappointing, but given that there are so many injuries to this team and the Packers are yet to play a full game with multiple missing stars, I think Tonyan’s disappointing season should be excused, and the team should give him another chance with a small extension. Also, passing numbers aren’t everything for Tonyan as he is a superb pass and run blocker.

Tonyan is a staple of this Packers team not just on the field, but in the locker room as well. As is the standard for any sports team, a big part of building a winning culture is keeping guys like that around for the long haul. I’m not saying that Tonyan should get a George Kittle or Travis Kelce type deal, but I do think his efforts to improve as an overall player over the past few seasons should be rewarded.

David Bakhtiari, a staple of the offensive line, has missed the entire season due to the ACL injury he suffered at the tail end of the 2020 campaign. I’m of the belief that this injury is a huge part of Tonyan’s slow down in production.

Aaron Rodgers has had less time to throw, meaning he’s relying more on forcing the ball to Davante Adams – and hey, I mean it’s working for the most part. Once Bak returned from injury and the offense got settled back into a groove, I fully expected Tonyan to get more opportunities.

Although we’ll never know if that was the case, I think Tonyan should, at the very minimum, get another one-year deal to prove himself. Letting Tonyan walk after this season would be a mistake on the Packers’ end.