Three weeks into free agency, the salary cap-strapped Redskins have focused mostly on retaining their own players. But that doesn’t mean some of their 2013 opponents haven’t been busy adding free agents to fill holes and reshape rosters. Recently, we examined Washington’s NFC EAST foes, the Giants, Eagles and Cowboys. In the coming weeks, we’re going to check in with the rest of the teams who appear on the Redskins’ schedule next season.
2012 record: 11-5
Key acquisitions: TE Matthew Mulligan
2013 outlook: What’s that? The Packers didn’t hand out a couple of lucrative, long-term contracts in the opening hours of free agency? You have got to be kidding me.
No, not really.
GM Ted Thompson, per usual, has resisted pressure from the media, the fan base and inside his own headquarters. Instead, he’s steadfastly stuck to his time-tested blueprint for success: taking care of the Packers’ core players and preparing to nail the upcoming draft.
It makes for a pretty boring offseason in Green Bay, I agree. But you can’t argue with Thompson’s results (six playoff appearances and a Super Bowl title in nine years).
In fact, the biggest headline for the Packers thus far in free agency has a departure: After seven seasons, wide receiver Greg Jennings signed a five-year, $47.5 million contract with NFC North rival Minnesota, then took out a full-page ad in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel thanking ‘Packers Nation’ for all the support through the years.
Meantime, Green Bay’s biggest addition has been reserve tight end Matthew Mulligan, a blocking specialist who isn’t even a lock to make the final roster as a backup to Jermichael Finley. It was reported that Packers had interest in running back Steven Jackson, who ended up signing in Atlanta, and defensive end Chris Canty, who landed in Baltimore.
By being frugal in free agency, though, the Packers have more than $17 million in cap space, according to NFLPA records. And much of that money is expected to be used to sign cornerstones Aaron Rodgers, Clay Matthews and B.J. Raji to long-term extensions.
Even without Jennings, the Packers’ lineup is legit. So is the typically bitter weather at Lambeau Field. The Redskins have lost their last three games in Green Bay, their most recent setback coming in 2007 by a score of 17-14. If Robert Griffin III, Alfred Morris and Co. don't put forth an outstanding effort, that losing streak could easily grow to four in a row.