Last season, rumors abounded that the Green Bay Packers were among the favorites to land coveted free agent JJ Watt. The intrigue, in addition to his Hall of Fame career, is that Watt is a native of Pewaukee, Wisconsin. However, Watt ended up signing with the Arizona Cardinals. Recently, rumors have abounded that Cardinals’ quarterback Kyler Murray is displeased with the organization and wants out. Those same rumors stated that if Murray leaves, Watt, too, will request a trade. Watt’s top two targets would be the Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers.
— Steel City (@SteelCityNow) February 17, 2022
How Could the Packers Make This Trade Work?
JJ Watt is expected to make $13.5 million in 2022 with a cap hit of $15.9 million. In 2023, which is a voided year of the contract, Watt can still carry a cap hit of $7.2 million despite not having to play. The Green Bay Packers, of course, are not in the best situation in terms of salary cap space in 2022. It is hard to imagine how the Packers would make the $15.9 million cap hit fit into their plans, especially since they are rumored to make Aaron Rodgers the highest paid quarterback in the NFL. Furthermore, the Packers are also rumored to be planning on using the franchise tag on Davante Adams, which would guarantee the All Pro wide receiver more than $20 million in 2022.
In order to acquire JJ Watt, the Packers would first have to shed more than $50 million to get under the salary cap in 2022. Then they would have to make room for his $15.9 million cap hit. One way the Packers could do this is by trading Aaron Rodgers, who has a cap hit over $46 million next season. If the Packers trade Aaron Rodgers, that would mean Jordan Love or any of these quarterbacks would take over. This scenario, though, will only occur if Rodgers requests a trade.
Would Trading for JJ Watt Even Be Worth It?
Last season, JJ Watt was limited to just seven games and recorded just one sack. Over the past six seasons, Watt has played 16 games just twice. In the four seasons that he did not, he played in three, five, eight, and seven games respectively. In other words, injuries are a major concern. The likelihood that Watt will be on the field, much less an effective pass rusher, does not look promising. Even if Watt requests a trade from the Cardinals, the Packers would do well to pass on any offer.
For More Great Wisconsin Sports Content
Follow me on Twitter at @theotherAdams14 and follow us @WiSportsHeroics for more great content. To read more of our articles and keep up to date on the latest in Wisconsin sports, click here! Also, check out our merch store for some amazing WSH merchandise!