The Green Bay Packers have a defense that, finally, is believed to among one of the top five in the entire NFL. They have built this defense from within, sprinkled with a few key free agent signings. The Packers spent their two first round draft picks on defensive players Quay Walker (linebacker) and Devonte Wyatt. Additionally, they have the best trio of cornerbacks in the NFL in Jaire Alexander, Rasul Douglas, and Eric Stokes. Kenny Clark is a two-time Pro Bowler in the heart of the defensive line. Green Bay also boasts De’Vondre Campbell as an All-Pro linebacker.
This does not even take into consideration the good safety play of Adrian Amos and Darnell Savage, nor does it account for Preston Smith and Rashan Gary on the edge. This all being said, the Packers do lack depth at the pass rusher position, and two-time Super Bowl champion Jason Pierre-Paul could be a nice addition to the roster.
Related: Packers named the ideal landing spot for three-time Pro Bowl safety
The Packers Lack of Depth on Defense
While the defensive line and cornerback positions appear set, there are some questions regarding depth at other positions. As mentioned, one of these is at pass rusher. Rashan Gary (9.5 sacks, 47 pressures) and Preston Smith (9.0 sacks, 28 pressures) are anchored as the starters. Beyond them, though, is Kingsley Enegbare and fringe roster players. If the Packers are to maintain a top-five defense all season long, they will need to add some depth at the position.
Jason Pierre-Paul Would Bring Experience, Depth, and Winning to the Packers
In order to provide depth to the pass rusher position, the Green Bay Packers could sign veteran edge rusher Jason Pierre-Paul (JPP). The 12-year NFL veteran is a three-time Pro Bowler and two-time Super Bowl champion. He won his first Super Bowl with the New York Giants in 2012 and his second with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2020.
#TBT to Jason Pierre-Paul blocking the FG, capping an incredible come from behind 37-34 win for the Giants over the Cowboys in Week 14 of the 2011 season. #GiantsPride pic.twitter.com/rbfWF7mGKf
— Giants Fans Online (@NYGFansOnline) October 31, 2019
His best season came in 2011, his second year in the NFL. That year, JPP had 16.5 sacks, seven pass deflections, two forced fumbles, and a safety. He finished fourth in Defensive Player of the Year voting and was a First Team All-Pro.
Despite being an older player, JPP is not so far removed from one of the most productive seasons of his career. In 2020, he had 9.5 sacks, two interceptions, and four forced fumbles.
Jason Pierre-Paul 😤 @UDWJPP
📺: #MINvsTB on FOX
📱: NFL app // Yahoo Sports app: https://t.co/tvMsTDEOAi pic.twitter.com/A6uNqcHeC1
— NFL (@NFL) December 13, 2020
Last season, JPP played in just 12 games and registered 2.5 sacks. The time may have come for him to take on a second-string role in any defense that he joins. This makes the Green Bay Packers a prime destination. With Gary and Smith cemented on either edge, JPP does not need to be the guy on defense. A reserve role will help him preserve his health and effectiveness. With $17 million in salary cap space, the Packers surely have the means to get a deal done.
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