The Green Bay Packers wide receiver room is going to be very young and inexperienced heading into the 2023 NFL season. According to most 53-man roster predictions, the Packers will have a room consisting of their three wide receiver draft picks from last year and their three from this year. Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, and Samori Toure will be joined by Jayden Reed, Dontayvion Wicks, and Grant DuBose. Of course, the situation that they are in started because they traded away All-Pro wide receiver Davante Adams.
In a recent podcast appearance, Adams revealed that the Packers low-balled him when it came to their extensions talks. He said that it was less than what he would have made on the franchise tag, which would have paid him just over $20 million last season. Instead, he was traded to the Raiders and signed a deal that is paying him $28 million a year. In a recent radio interview on The Earl Ingram Show during a segment called “Under the Helmet with the Gravedigger,” Packers Hall of Famer Gilbert Brown questioned the front office’s decision to let him go.
Gilbert Brown Asks How the Green Bay Packers Could Have Let Davante Adams Go
Host Earl Ingram started the discussion by summarizing the things that Adams said during his interview: he didn’t need Aaron Rodgers and the Packers low-balled him during their contract negotiations. He then stated that what Adams said was true, that he definitely is one of the best players in football. Gilbert responded:
“He is. He is. He proved it, you know what I’m saying? To me, it’s like, how did you let that type of talent go? You know what I’m saying?”
What followed was a very interesting dialogue that called into question the Packers’ decision to pay Rodgers, but not Adams:
Ingram: “Well c’mon man, they can’t pay everybody.”
Brown: “They could pay him.”
Ingram: “They paid Aaron $50 million!”
Brown: “I mean, they make certain decisions because they think something is going to happen. It’s like how they broke up the ’96 Packers.”
Ingram: “But that cap, Gilbert, that Cap! Was there a cap when you played?”
Brown: “Yeah there was a cap! You think I played with leather helmets like you!”
Ingram: “So what people got to understand is that you can’t hold onto cats like they used to back in the 60s. They weren’t paying them any money!”
Brown: “No. But see, but see a good general manager will see the key components that you cannot let go. You go back to may team, ’95, that was the start. ’96 was the Super Bowl, taking players away. ’97 was another Super Bowl run, taking players away. From ’95 to ’98, we were still in contention for the Super Bowl! If we’d have kept the key guys that they let go because of money, or because of whatever, we would have had a dynasty with four championships!”
Ingram: “But that cap, man.”
Brown: “Sometimes that cap isn’t what it is because they want you to take less money, but play like, you know, c’mon man! Especially when it’s not guaranteed! But for me money was never an issue. I wasn’t going anywhere. I love the game. I love Green Bay! But for other guys it is!”
Of course, the decision to trade Adams will always be considered a controversial one. While Brian Gutekunst was able to, somehow, get a first and second round pick for a guy that was going to refuse to play, the more that comes out about the negotiations, the harder it is to defend. Now, that could all change if Christian Watson goes nuts and becomes the next big thing on the Packers’ offense, but it would be unfair to him (Watson that is) to expect him to be Davante Adams.
Hindsight, of course ,is 20/20. I would like to think that had the Packers known that things with Rodgers were going to go down they way they were, they would have traded him last offseason and signed Adams to the extension he deserved.
Of note, it sure is wonderful hearing Gilbert say that money was never an issue for him, that he was always going to stay in Green Bay. While no one should begrudge a player for leaving to make more money elsewhere, there is something about staying for less money that really endears a player to the fanbase.
That is why Gilbert Brown remains one of the most popular players in recent memory.
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