The front office of the Green Bay Packers has been known for its head-scratching moves, especially within the last year. The Packers had arguably the most scrutinized draft in quite some time back in April. Now, their latest move already has some Packers fans and beat writers raising their eyebrows.
The 2020 Packers draft is still being talked about
The play of quarterback Aaron Rodgers this season triggered talk of the Green Bay Packers draft of 2020. Rodgers was dominant during the regular season, winning his third MVP and guiding the Packers to their second straight NFC title game. This came right after the Packers traded up in the first round of the draft to take Rodgers’ eventual replacement, Jordan Love.
The Packers didn’t stop there. The very next round, they selected running back A.J. Dillon after Aaron Jones had quite a 2019 season. Jones made his first Pro Bowl in the 2020 season. Green Bay then re-signed Jones to a four-year deal last week.
Wasted picks might be considered too strong, but the Packers didn’t do themselves any favors when it came to seeking immediate help. The team was one game from reaching the Super Bowl in each of the last two years and the front office burned their first two draft picks as if they were drafting for the 2023 season.
The Packers surprisingly re-sign cornerback Kevin King
Most football fans, especially Green Bay Packers fans, probably felt the team was going to move on from cornerback Kevin King. King was Green Bay’s first pick in the 2017 NFL draft. The team didn’t have a first-round pick and the Packers selected the defensive back out of Washington with the opening pick of the second round.
King had a solid year in 2019 with a career-high five interceptions and 66 tackles. Last year, the final season of his rookie deal, King had a tough season. He played 11 games and didn’t record an interception.
King was badly exposed in the NFC Championship Game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Right before halftime, he was burned on the last play when wide receiver Scotty Miller got behind him and Tom Brady hit him with a touchdown pass. King was then flagged for pass interference on the Bucs’ final drive that gave them a first down and allowed them to run out the clock.
Packers banking on Kevin King returning to 2019 form
While the return of cornerback Kevin King is puzzling, it does keep the Green Bay Packers secondary intact. King’s return, however, baffled many fans and even Green Bay beat writers as the oft-injured King, who had a tendency to give up the big play, was recently signed to a one-year deal worth $6 million.
King’s biggest issue is health. He played in 11 games last year. Outside that 2019 season, he’s never played more than 11 games in a season. In his four years with the Packers, King has played in 41 regular-season contests and has six career interceptions. Five of them came in 2019.
Re-signing King to a one-year deal is by no means a franchise-altering decision. It’s just another puzzling move the Packers front office has made in the last couple of years.
All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference.