Last week, I highlighted five free agents that could help turn around a Packers offense that had grown stale and fallen apart without Rodgers at the helm. The defense, however is in need of a lot more help, and will likely be a priority in the draft and free agency, yet again. So this week, I’ve put together a list of 5 players that could help get this defense back into the top 15, where it needs to be if the Packers are expecting to win another Super Bowl.
Malcom Butler – CB – New England Patriots
Obviously most famous for his game winning Super Bowl interception in Super bowl 49 against the Seattle Seahawks, Butler has put together a decent career with 8 interceptions, 205 total tackles, and 47 pass deflections with an additional 2.0 QB sacks. The former Pro Bowler (2015) has proven himself to be a very good player but hasn’t been too happy with New England as of late. The decision to bench Butler during Super Bowl 52 made Malcom understandably angry, leading to him lashing out after the game. With him being angry with New England, and his contract expring this month, expect him to move on. If the Packers intend to be aggressive this off season, and the price is right, I see no reason why he couldn’t end up on this squad in 2018.
Kyle Fuller – CB – Chicago Bears
Drafted in 2014 the young Cornerback has definitely made a name for himself in an underrated Bears defense. So far in his career he has racked up 8 interceptions, 188 total tackles, 41 pass deflections and 3 fumble recoveries. Fuller would fit right in with this Pettine led defense in 2018 with his ability to put pressure on the receiver and play man to man. The Packers need to build this defense around young stars and Fuller would fit that bill perfectly. Fuller has been in contract talks with the Bears, who may end up designating him as their franchise player, locking him in to a contract for 2018.
Todd Davis – ILB – Denver Broncos
Davis is another young defensive player this Packers front office should take a serious look at. Davis so far in his career has racked up 222 total tackles and 1.5 sacks. Under the right guidance, which Mike Pettine could provide, Davis could turn into an effective player in the middle of the Green Bay defense. In a revamped defense, with Pettine, Matthews, and Martinez to guide him, Davis could blow up playing for the Packers in 2018.
Prince Amukamara – CB – Chicago Bears
Like Fuller, Prince is another big piece of the Chicago Bears underrated defense in 2017. The Super Bowl 46 winning CB has recorded 358 total tackles, 7 interceptions, 58 pass deflections, and 3 forced fumbles throughout his career, and would fit right in with the Packers scheme and need for a veteran leader at the cornerback position. Prince has struggled with injuries though, which could be a problem moving forward. He’s not getting any younger, and the Packers have had to suffer through a tremendous amount of injuries in the past few years. If signed and healthy, he could be the missing piece to a Packers secondary that is very close to being good again.
Eric Reid – SS – San Francisco 49ers
last but not least, Reid is definitely one of the best players in free agency, and he plays at a position that Mike Pettine values very highly. In his career, Reid has racked up 10 interceptions, 1.0 sack, 291 tackles, and 33 pass deflections. He was a huge part of an elite defensive unit that helped the 49ers reach there second consecutive straight NFC Championship in 2013. Reid is young (26) and hungry for a ring, if signed by the Packers, those gaping holes in the middle of the field left open by Capers and his defenses will start to close up. Regardless of where he goes the former Pro Bowler will have a huge impact.
Are there any defensive free agents you would like to see in Green and Gold next year? Should the Packers take a risk and add someone like Mo Wilkerson or Aqib Talib?