The first year of the Matt LaFleur era was a success, as the Green Bay Packers finished the regular season 13-3, clinched the NFC North title and made it to the NFC Championship game. Now entering the offseason, however, the Packers will turn their attention to improving for 2020, and that includes parting ways with players who have been on the roster for several seasons.
On Wednesday afternoon, Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported that the Packers are not expected to bring back tight end Jimmy Graham. Rapoport goes on to say that this move with the 33-year-old is not a surprise to anyone involved. In Graham's second season with the Packers, he caught 38 passes for 447 yards and three touchdowns. He never really got going in Green Bay, as he recorded 55 catches for 636 yards and two touchdowns last year.
What's interesting is that Graham is not a free agent, he's still under contract for the 2020 season and has a base salary of $7.45 million according to Spotrac. Prior to the 2018 season, Graham signed a three-year, $30 million contract after spending three seasons with the Seattle Seahawks.
Once regarded as one of the top tight ends in the NFL, Graham has yet to match some of the numbers he put up earlier in his career with the New Orleans Saints. In three seasons from 2011 to 2013, Graham recorded two 1,000-yard seasons and a combined 36 receiving touchdowns. He was traded to the Seahawks ahead of the 2015 season for center Max Unger and the Seahawks' first-round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.
It remains to be seen if any teams would be interested in trading for a 33-year-old tight end who is set to be one of the highest-paid at his position in 2020 -- especially considering some of the players set to hit free agency this offseason. The Packers may be forced to release him, and carry some dead cap into next year.