The Green Bay Packers will have a lot of decisions to make in the coming months regarding the future of their roster. One of the biggest, if not the biggest, will be what the Packers do with star edge rusher Rashan Gary.
Rashan Gary is under the fifth-year option on his rookie contract. His base salary is $10.89 million. Depending on the structure of the new contract, the Packers could even open cap space in 2023 if they extend him. Although the Packers’ openings are reduced each week, an in-season extension is still very possible. And Gary’s side is open to that scenario. However, if an extension doesn’t happen, one team is rumored to be interested in pursing Gary.
The Atlanta Falcons Emerge As A Team Who Could Pursue Green Bay Packers’ Edge Rusher Rashan Gary
A recent report by Bleacher Report highlighted this scenario:
The Falcons’ pass rush as a whole has been pretty underwhelming this season as they only had five sacks in their first five games and defensive tackle David Onyemata led the team with 1.5. Their edge-rushers have been the biggest issue, as Bud Dupree and Lorenzo Carter combined for just 1.5 sacks.
Also, Dupree is an impending free agent, so expect the front office to aggressively pursue someone who can put pressure on opposing offensive tackles this offseason.
Gary would be a great fit in Atlanta’s scheme, as he’s best out of a two-point stance or as a standup outside linebacker. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that the 2019 first-round pick had 4.5 sacks through Green Bay’s first five contests while playing on a pitch count as he recovers from last season’s torn ACL.
Would The Packers Ever Let Rashan Gary Walk Into Free Agency?
Spotrac’s market value estimations indicate that Gary – a 25-year-old outside linebacker with the Packers – is expected to sign a $104.2 million, four-year extension with the Packers. That would make Gary fourth among outside linebackers in the league and 22nd overall in the NFL. For perspective, T.J. Watt reached a four-year contract worth $112 million as a 26-year-old, while Maxx Crosby reached a four-year contract worth $94 million as a 24-year-old.
The Packers have a rich history of paying their own players. Jaire Alexander, David Bakhtiari, Kenny Clark, Aaron Jones, and Elgton Jenkins have all signed long-term contracts with the Packers that have made them one of the highest paid players at their position in the league.
It would be shocking to see the Packers pass up on a corner stone player like Gary. Even given his recent injury history, the Packers will likely lock up #52 very time soon.
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