PACK­ERS CHAT

Packer Plus - - News - Pete Dougherty Columnist USA TO­DAY NET­WORK – WIS.

Green Bay P ress-Gazette columnist Pete Dougherty an­swered ques­tions from read­ers dur­ing a re­cent chat. For the com­plete tran­script visit pack­er­snews.com.

Q: Pete, seems like $3.5M guar­an­teed is a lot for 35-year-old (Tra­mon) Wil­liams. Your thoughts?

A: I thought the same thing. I think it re­flects two things: One, Wil­liams played sur­pris­ingly well for a player his age last sea­son, and the Pack­ers had a cer­tain level of des­per­a­tion af­ter all the top CBs went off the board and their shot at Fuller didn't work. Wil­liams is a re­ally springy ath­lete, sort of a CB ver­sion of Don­ald Driver, so he might be the rare, rare player who can play pretty de­cent CB at his age. But age is bru­tal and there's al­ways the chance he could hit a wall soon. That said, I can't blame them for sign­ing him if that's the price it took. He's played in GB, played for Pet­tine in Cleve­land, and is a great guy to have in the locker room. He prob­a­bly was as good as any op­tion out there.

Q: Do you think there is any chance that (Aaron) Rodgers will opt to ex­tend his con­tract at a lower value in or­der to give the Pack­ers more cap room to ob­tain bet­ter play­ers to build a stronger team around him?

A:

I wouldn't think he'd do it grossly so, like, for in­stance, (Tom) Brady, whose wife from what I've read rou­tinely makes $30M or more a year. Rodgers be­came the high­est-paid player in the league at his last con­tract but in my opin­ion could have eas­ily squeezed more money out of the Pack­ers. That sug­gests he might do it again. So I'm think­ing his new deal will be worth $30M a year or a lit­tle more with a lot, lot of guar­an­teed money. I'd think that would be a pretty fair deal for both sides.

Q: Please ex­plain why (Ran­dall) Cobb is still on the ros­ter.

A:

From what I can tell, (Mike) McCarthy re­ally re­ally likes him be­cause of his tough­ness (play­ing through in­juries) and the ver­sa­til­ity you men­tion, though I also ques­tion whether it's re­ally that valu­able, es­pe­cially now that they have a cou­ple real run­ning backs. If I were the Pack­ers I'd have asked him to take a pay cut, but my best guess is that they think if they did, Cobb would refuse and then they'd have to be will­ing to cut him, and they think that even if they're over- pay­ing him they still need him. Hav­ing (Jimmy) Gra­ham to pair with (Da­vante) Adams should help Cobb, as will (Aaron) Jones at RB if he can stay healthy. Cobb is a good player and has a good chem­istry with Rodgers when plays break down, which is a big part of the Pack­ers' of­fense. He's quick but not su­per ex­plo­sive — not a Percy Harvin-type for sure — as you point out. He's a small tar­get, so throws to him have to be right on the money, just not the catch ra­dius of big­ger guys. I see both sides and there's room for rea­son­able peo­ple to dis­agree, but I'd have gone for the pay cut if I were the Pack­ers. That said, maybe play­ing with Gra­ham and Adams will open things up for Cobb and he'll be more pro­duc­tive this year.

Q: A ques­tion here about the job security of McCarthy. How much is on the line for him with the new man­age­ment struc­ture?

A:

I'm sure a lot is on the line for him. From what I can see and have heard, things worked about the way he hoped with (Brian) Gutekunst get­ting the job and all three FB guys (MM, Gutekunst and (Russ) Ball) re­port­ing di­rectly to (Mark) Mur­phy.

AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

The ver­sa­til­ity of Pack­ers re­ceiver Ran­dall Cobb may have helped keep him on the ros­ter.

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