The Green Bay Packers suffered another disappointing playoff exit this weekend, falling short of a Super Bowl for the 11th consecutive season. With the offseason now fast approaching, team brass will soon have some tough decisions to make on the future of several key players.
The most difficult of those choices regards wideout Davante Adams, the most prized free agent in the 2022 class.
Adams has spent the last eight seasons with the Packers, the club that selected him in the second round of the 2014 draft. He's evolved into one of the league's greats at wide receiver, amassing 669 catches for 8,121 yards and 73 touchdowns in 116 games.
Despite his impressive numbers, Green Bay has never advanced past the NFC Championship Game with Adams on the roster.
The team came close recently—falling short in both the 2020 and 2021 conference title games—but just took an embarrassing 13-10 loss in the Divisional Round to the sixth-seeded San Francisco 49ers.
That defeat exposed several weaknesses in the top-seeded Packers lineup, problems that may not get a chance to be fixed if quarterback Aaron Rodgers decides to exit after being mum on his future in Green Bay.
While the Packers may try to keep Adams around to entice Rodgers to remain in Titletown, it would be a costly choice. PFF is estimating it will cost over $23 million per season to lock Adams down.
If the Packers and Adams can’t come to an agreement on a multi-year contract, the club also has the option of franchise tagging the superstar.
The tag will ring up around $20.12 million for the 2022 season, a sizable chunk for an organization with $247.882 million—the second-most in the league—in commitments, putting them a projected $44.8 million over the cap.
It will be extremely challenging for the Pack to squeeze a new deal in with their current financial restraints. The likelihood of it happening is further reduced by Adams' desire to become the league's highest paid receiver with his next contract.
It's a condition the Packers have been reluctant to agree to and will have even less reason to if Rodgers ends up leaving.
There should be no shortage of competing teams willing to honor those high-paying wishes when Adams hits the open market.
Here's a few spots where Adams could land if and when he leaves Green Bay.
Las Vegas Raiders
The Las Vegas Raiders just made the playoffs for the first time since 2016, but their appearance was short-lived after the Bengals eliminated them in the Wild Card Round.
It's readily apparent the squad needs more firepower to evolve into a true Super Bowl contender, something Adams could provide that offense in spades.
While the Raiders appear to be a team on the rise—2021 marked only their second winning season since 2003, but they have improved their win percentage in each of the last four years—there is another key reason why this would be an intriguing club for Adams to sign with.
Las Vegas offers Adams the opportunity to play with quarterback Derek Carr again. The two partnered up at Fresno State in 2012-13, enjoying plenty of success during their two years together.