Of the 85 players currently listed on the Green Bay Packers roster, only 17 of them were playing for the Packers three years ago. It may not feel like it, but the roster turnover of the NFL rivals what we see in college football where most players stay for three or four years before they decide (or are forced) to move on.
It’s impossible to even come close to accurately predicting what an NFL roster will look like three years from now, and when the team in question happens to be drowning in salary cap uncertainty, this psychic endeavor becomes even trickier.
If you had asked me in February to predict the Packers roster three MONTHS from now, there would be misses all over the board, specifically pertaining to the Davante Adams saga which largely unfolded outside of the public eye.
There are only 14 players currently under contract for the Packers in 2025. Unsurprisingly, this includes the 10 rookies recently selected in the NFL Draft. How many of these 14 will fulfill the entirety of their contracts and still be Packers in 2025? Let’s take a look.
Almost certainly still Packers in 2025
- Jaire Alexander, Quay Walker, Devonte Wyatt, Christian Watson, Sean Rhyan
Jaire’s major extension this offseason will see him under contract in Green Bay through the 2026 season. The Packers do have a potential ‘out’ two years earlier, but that’s unlikely to be exercised as at 27 years old, Alexander should be in the prime of his career. This is the safest bet you can get.
As for the rookies, obviously we cannot account for any off-field issues that may arise and result in early contact terminations, but the vast majority of top-100 draft picks play out the entirety of their rookie contracts with their drafted team.
As first-round picks, both Wyatt and Walker have the built-in fifth-year option in their contracts which would allow the Packers to keep them in the building through the 2026 season.
The remainder of the rookies
- Romeo Doubs, Zach Tom, Kingsley Enagbare, Tariq Carpenter, Jonathan Ford, Rasheed Walker, Samori Toure
It feels wrong to give a prediction on which of these guys will still be Packers in three years. The future outlook for day three picks is significantly more muddy than their top-100 counterparts, but all of these players are under contract and all will be available at a very affordable price for each of the next four seasons.
With major salary cap issues lingering around, the Packers will need to retain as much cheap roster depth as possible moving forward. So for guys like Doubs and Tom, their chances look pretty favorable.
Rodgers told you himself that his new deal is a year-to-year proposition. Considering the reigning league MVP hasn’t ruled out the possibility that this will be his final year before hanging up the cleats, I’d be pretty surprised to see Rodgers still slinging it in 2025.
It really feels like three more seasons is the realistic ceiling for expectations. Rodgers’ monstrous cap hit of $59 million in 2025 will almost certainly never come to fruition, and future adjustments to the contract he signed this past offseason are inevitable.
If Aaron Rodgers is still in town for the 2025 season, he’ll be entering year 21 in the league, still a couple of years behind Tom Brady who looks set to head for the booth following this, his 23rd NFL season.
Campbell signed a big deal this offseason to return to the Packers after his inaugural All-Pro season in 2021. The five-year deal would see him in Green Bay through the 2026 season, but the contract is structured in a way that makes Campbell a potential cap casualty in a few years time.
With Quay Walker hopefully emerging as a talented playmaking linebacker for years to come, the probability of Campbell lasting the entire duration of his contract is not overly high.
But for now at least, there is nobody standing in Campbell’s way. He is head honcho on Joe Barry’s defense, positioned at the heart of the 11 with the green dot on his helmet. Campbell will be an integral part of the Packers in 2022.
Credit must be given where it’s due to Preston Smith. After a sluggish second year in Green Bay, Smith put the work in to allow for a major bounce-back 2021 campaign. He was rewarded with an extension earlier this offseason, which sees him under contract through the 2026 season.
However, Preston is only four months away from turning 30 years old, and he plays in a premium position where production often falls off a cliff as players begin to age. Despite enjoying a relatively injury-free career, there’s always going to be concerns of wear and tear as players like Smith enter their thirties.
Preston’s dead cap hit decreases with each year and after three seasons it’ll reach a level where it’s not really a major cap issue for the Packers to release him. Smith is going to assume the role of a true veteran on a relatively young Packers defense, but it remains to be seen how long he can sustain high-level play befitting of his healthy salary.