Green Bay Packers left tackle David Bakhtiari made some waves over the past week with his comments regarding Aaron Rodgers and the team as a whole. Notably, fans looked at his comments regarding the front office, referring to them as ‘they’ as opposed to ‘we,’ with raised eyebrows. Additionally, some had strong feelings regarding his comments that the Packers may not be good in 2023.
While Bakhtiari has since clarified his comments, there are still fans who have negative feelings towards him. What does not help matters is his contract situation, especially beyond the 2023 season. Many, including Bakhtiari himself, realize there is a possibility that the left tackle becomes a cap casualty after this upcoming season. Packers Hall of Famer Gilbert Brown, too, had some wise words of advice for the five-time Pro Bowler on The Earl Ingram Show.
Gilbert Brown Believes the Green Bay Packers Still Need David Bakhtiari
During the show, host Earl Ingram talked about Bakhtiari’s comments about the organization and how expensive he is. Gilbert Brown, however, had a strong defense for Bakhtiari’s comments and one big reason why Green Bay needs to hang onto him:
“If you want the same protection for Love, you better pay that man. You just don’t find good left tackles out there on the street. They also got to be exceptional human beings because that’s your blindside, fool!”
Ingram then discussed Bakhtiari’s injuries and his recent history of being unable to stay on the field. Gilbert admitted that the injury situation is something to keep an eye on, that the organization is looking at “everything with a fine-tooth comb” when it comes to moving forward.
Afterwards, Ingram brought up Bakhtiari’s comments on “Bussin’ with the Boys” in which he referred to the front office as “they.” On this point, Gilbert had a great point:
“It’s not all together, Earl. And you got to listen, as a player, you see this happen to one guy, and you’re like ‘That ain’t going to happen to me.’ Or in the back of your mind, you know your time has come. You know in the back of your mind that you may lose a step here, may lose step here. It’s hard for a guy to accept that you are now becoming expendable.
“From the time you start to the time you end, it’s like a car. You buy a brank new car, as soon as you drive it off the lot, it starts to depreciate. That’s what a football player does. As soon as you get your butt inside, and you get to where you need to be, then you start to depreciate. And some guys just can’t understand that.
“For Bakhtiari, to be talking like this, he [ticked] off. Number one: he had to restructure his contract because he thought they was going to keep Aaron Rodgers. Number two: his homeboy is leaving. And he probably, I don’t know, want to go with him. Number three: as a player, you got to let that go, man. Because my homeboy could be right here with me in the trenches now and gone tomorrow.
“But is that going to keep me from the being the guy I’m supposed to be? I got to go ahead and stay with ‘Jordan Love is the man.’ I got to start getting on the Jordan Love train, period!”
What it all comes down to, as Gilbert said later, is “You [David Bakhtiari] are not the guy you was before.” The fact of the matter is that Bakhtiari, while he played well in 2022 when healthy, still missed a fair amount of games. As he gets older, it stands to reason that it will be the norm for him to miss games, and that is not worth close to $25 million per season.
As for his referring to the Packers as “they,” it is really important for fans to note what Gilbert said above: “It’s not all together.” In this quote, he was saying that the Packers players and the Packers front office are not both referenced in Bakhtiari’s comment. “They” is the front office, and he did a great job explaining, from a player’s perspective, why it is important to understand the way the two sides approach the business of football.
It is hard for players because there comes a time that they become expendable. At the same time, it is an easy business decision for the front office to move on. It is, in a way, less personal for them. We should not make the mistake of thinking that Bakhtiari was including his current teammates when he said “they.”
For more on Gilbert’s take on the Bakhtiari situation and for his thoughts on the Detroit Lions’ gambling scandal, listen to the entire segment using the link above.
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