The Green Bay Packers got some good news on the defensive front this morning, with the addition of former Dallas Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith. The bigger need ahead of the NFL trade deadline for the team is in the defensive backfield, and for a bit, it looked like they might answer it by adding New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore, one of the best corners of the last few years.
Alexander suffered a shoulder injury over the weekend. As of now, the Packers are hoping he can avoid surgery, which would potentially end his season.
Gilmore has been unhappy with his contract situation over the last few years in New England. This week, things came to a head, and he was ultimately swapped for just a sixth-rounder from the Carolina Panthers. The Packers’ Davante Adams was among those recruiting Gilmore, telling him to pick up the phone after Gilmore posted to Instagram about his departure from the Patriots.
The Packers were reportedly interested, and were considered a favorite to land Gilmore, but the team’s narrow salary cap situation ultimately prevented it from happening. On Wednesday night, Adams had a (likely tongue-in-cheek) response to the situation.
He never called…
— Davante Adams (@tae15adams) October 7, 2021
ESPN‘s Rob Demovsky wrote about the Packers’ inability to get the Stephon Gilmore move done. It was a financial issue, not one of being unable to match the Panthers’ low offer.
“The Packers had been exploring ways to acquire Gilmore, who is on the physically unable to perform list while recovering from surgery last year to repair a torn quad.
“Gilmore has about $5.8 million remaining on his base salary of $7 million this season, the final year of his deal. Even after restructuring just about every veteran contract they could this offseason, the Packers still had only about $6.5 million in available salary-cap space for the rest of this year. Teams need space to make in-season practice-squad elevations and other injury-related moves.
“So there was really only one way the Packers could have ended up with Gilmore: If the Patriots cut him and he were willing to take a lower-salaried deal.”
Adams joked that he tossed out his Instagram comment “to see how hungry he was to be a Packer,” but admitted that he didn’t expect the move to work out anyway.
“I wasn’t expecting that to happen, anyway. I think they got a pretty good feeling of how we’re going to move as a defense, so I wasn’t really expecting it to happen. I only commented to stir some s— up just to be funny. It’d be great to have him. He’s a great player and one of the best in the league still, for sure. So, it wasn’t a joke like I didn’t want him here – definitely would want him here but definitely did not expect us to pick him up.”
Instead, the Rock Hill, South Carolina native (and former South Carolina Gamecock) will have something of a homecoming with the Carolina Panthers, who have had one of the best defenses in the NFL so far this year.
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