NFC North Notes: Packers, Rodgers, Bears

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has some ideas for how the NFL can improve, specifically when it comes to the salary cap and contracts. Given Rodgers’ contractual situation, it’s no surprise that he would like to see the league do away with the franchise tag.

I think if you didn’t have it, it would encourage teams to get deals done earlier and in the long run it actually might save them money,” he said (via Kevin Clark of The Ringer). “Because you’re doing a guy’s deal a year before he’s ready to play, especially young guys. Maybe they get him for cheap and, if he has a huge season his last year, cheaper than they would have gotten him after that season, if you sign him early.”

Rodgers, who is a minority owner of the Milwaukee Bucks, would also like to see the NFL take a page from the NBA and institute a soft salary cap.

I would allow teams to go over the cap knowing if they do, since there’s not a hard cap, they are going to be faced with some luxury tax issues and they’d change their strategy,” Rodgers said. “It’s not like we’re hurting—just like the NBA, we’re not hurting for revenue. We’re doing excellent in the NFL and the NBA is doing fantastic as well.”

While you mull over Commissioner Rodgers’ suggestions, here’s more from his division:

  • Bears linebacker Roquan Smith is the only remaining unsigned 2018 draft pick and Joel Corry of has a suggestion for how the two sides can bridge the gap. Smith’s contract, he writes, could have similar language to what was in Ndamukong Suh‘s Dolphins contract. Smith’s camp doesn’t want his guarantees to void in the event of league discipline, but a compromise could involve a clause that says Smith would have to be suspended for at a certain percentage of the season’s game in order for the guarantees to be 86’d. In Suh’s case, that number was 25%.
  • On Wednesday, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said the club would be open to exploring the free agent guard market for depth purposes. “We’re looking at all free agent areas, really,” Zimmer said (Twitter link via’s Courtney Cronin). “That’s what those guys do at night. They come in here and watch — heck they watch other teams, they watch guys on the street. So yeah.” After learning that Nick Easton will likely miss the entire 2018 season with a neck injury, it seems likely that the Vikings will explore outside help for the interior line.
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2 comments on “NFC North Notes: Packers, Rodgers, Bears

  1. wrigleyhawkeye

    I’d suggest the NFL look at the Larry Bird rule and modifying it a bit. If the guy has been on your team for 4, 6, 8, Whatever years then only a percentage of his salary counts towards your salary cap. It could scale too (5 years = 95% toward cap, 6 years = 90%, 10 years = 70%).

    Maybe do the same for FA veterans— been in the league for 10 years then only 85% of your salary/bonus count towards the cap.

  2. WazBazbo

    “Maybe they get him for cheap and, if he has a huge season his last year, cheaper than they would have gotten him after that season, if you sign him early.”

    Except, how often does a player who was gotten early on the cheap honor the entire contract? It seems more often than not you wind up with a Julio Jones-ish situation.

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