Roster building never ends. It's a year-round job. Green Bay Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst is the master of making affordable moves that pay off huge.
Exactly two years ago, the Packers signed De'Vondre Campbell to a one-year deal worth $2 million.
In his first season with the Packers, Campbell made 146 tackles, two sacks, six QB hits, five pass defenses, and two interceptions. He was named a first-team All-Pro and landed a five-year, $50 million extension in the offseason.
Gutekunst has a great track record when it comes to signing talented players to affordable deals. Rasul Douglas, Keisean Nixon, and Allen Lazard are great examples of this.
Who could be this year's De'Vondre Campbell for the Packers, a free agent still available in June who can make a significant impact in year one?
Packers should sign free-agent safety John Johnson III
Safety remains an area of concern for the Packers, despite making several moves at the position this offseason.
Rudy Ford, Jonathan Owens, and rookie Anthony Johnson Jr. are among the players competing for a starting job alongside Darnell Savage. There is a remaining free agent who could win the job ahead of all three: John Johnson III.
The Los Angeles Rams selected Johnson in the third round of the 2017 NFL Draft. He spent four seasons in Los Angeles before signing a three-year deal worth $33.75 million with the Cleveland Browns.
It didn't work out for Johnson in Cleveland, and the Browns released him this offseason. But there's a reason why Johnson signed a big deal with the Browns a couple of years ago. He is a talented player.
During his four seasons with the Rams, Johnson started 48 games and made 32 pass defenses and eight interceptions.
Packers head coach Matt LaFleur spent one year in Los Angeles with Johnson, his rookie season in 2017. Defensive coordinator Joe Barry was the Rams' assistant head coach and linebackers coach for Johnson's entire four-year stay in Los Angeles.
Johnson's success with the Rams came in a similar system to the Packers'. He has 80 career starts across six seasons and could immediately solve one of the Packers' concerns on defense.
While he wouldn't necessarily become a first-team All-Pro like Campbell in 2021, Johnson could be another affordable free-agent signing for the Packers in June who becomes a key starter immediately.