3 WRs the Packers Should've Signed Instead of Aaron Jones
By Max Staley
Aaron Jones is one of the best running backs in the NFL. But time and time again, we've seen teams come to regret inking star RBs to huge deals. In just the past few seasons, studs like Todd Gurley, Ezekiel Elliott, Le'Veon Bell, David Johnson and Derrick Henry have signed massive contracts, just to name a few. Of those, only two players are still with the team that paid them.
And the Tennessee Titans are probably the only team who don't wish they could have that contract back. Unless you're willing to bet Jones is a Derrick Henry-level outlier, recent history says the Packers may come to regret signing the RB to a four-year, $48 million deal
This contract also makes spending last year's second-round pick on A.J. Dillon look even worse, as that's a ridiculous premium to spend on a backup running back. That's especially true considering the gaping hole Green Bay has at receiver behind Davante Adams.
Using projected contract values from ProFootballFocus, here are three WRs Green Bay should've targeted in free agency instead of Jones.
3. T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts
PFF has T.Y. Hilton inking a three-year, $27 million deal with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Hilton would've been the best No. 2 WR the Packers have had in quite some time, but it's hard to see him landing in Green Bay now that Jones is eating up so much space. Hilton did have a bit of a down year, but he really turned it on down the stretch by averaging 72.5 receiving yards per contest over his final six outings. Adding a legit field-stretching wideout like him could've done wonders for this offense.
2. John Brown, Buffalo Bills
The Buffalo Bills recently released John Brown. Just like Hilton, the downfield burner would've been a massive addition for the Packers. Last year, Marques Valdes-Scantling only hauled in 30.4% of the targets he saw that traveled 20-plus yards downfield. That ranked 26th among 31 qualified wideouts. Brown didn't play enough to qualify in 2019, but he's a much more sure-handed receiver. He's had a catch rate of at least 62.6% in each of the past two seasons, while MVS has never topped 52.4% despite playing with one of the most accurate QBs the league has ever seen.
1. Curtis Samuel, Carolina Panthers
But no one was a more efficient deep-ball WR last year than Curtis Samuel. He hauled in 76.9% of his deep targets last season, which was the best such mark at the position. Clearly, that'd be an upgrade over what the Packers got from the likes of MVS, Allen Lazard and Equanimeous St. Brown. But Samuel isn't just a one-trick pony. He's a legitimate threat as both a rusher and receiver out of the backfield, handling 41 carries for 200 yards in 2020. That versatility could've allowed him to replace some of Jones' production as a pass-catcher out of the backfield, while also serving as GB's No. 2 WR and primary deep threat. Projected to sign a three-year, $27.5 million deal by PFF, the Packers would've been much better off using Jones' money on the 24-year-old Panthers' wideout.
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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.