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Dougherty: Packers won't rush KGB decision

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by Greg C., Jan 12, 2007.

  1. Greg C.

    Greg C. Cheesehead

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    Here's an article about KGB from today's Press Gazette:

    Posted January 12, 2007

    Packers won't rush KGB decision

    By Pete Dougherty
    pdougher@greenbaypressgazette.com

    Among the many decisions General Manager Ted Thompson has to make this offseason is what to do with pass rusher Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila.

    In the last month of the season, Cullen Jenkins took over for Gbaja-Biamila as the starting right defensive end and profoundly improved the Packers' run defense. Assuming the Packers retain Jenkins as a restricted free agent, Thompson will have to decide whether Gbaja-Biamila will be worth his $5 million salary in 2007 playing mainly as a pass-rush specialist rather than as an every-down player.

    Though it's too early in the offseason to draw definite conclusions, there's reason to think the Packers seriously are considering keeping Gbaja-Biamila at that salary rather than asking him to take a pay cut. A proven rusher such as Gbaja-Biamila, 29, could make at least $5 million in a signing bonus alone if he refused the cut and was released, even though his sack production has declined the last two years.

    "I think that's fair to say," said Bruce Tollner, Gbaja-Biamila's agent, of his client's worth on the open market.

    Tollner said the Packers have not called to discuss Gbaja-Biamila's salary and a possible pay cut. There's plenty of time to address that if Thompson chooses — free agency and the new NFL year don't begin until March 2 — but those are issues the team often begins exploring early in the offseason.

    "I have not talked to the team with regard to that," Tollner said, "and I'd rather not get into my speculations on what they're going to do."

    The Packers are believed to be close to $25 million under the 2007 cap, so they have no compelling reason to clear cap room immediately other than to maintain their salary structure. They conceivably could carry Gbaja-Biamila's $5 million on their cap well into the offseason and see how a young pass rusher such as Jason Hunter develops and whether they land a comparable rusher at a cheaper price in free agency, or draft a prospect they especially like.

    However, with the salary cap going up an estimated $7 million this year to $109 million, most teams have substantial cap room, and salaries will continue to escalate. By the end of the first wave of free agency in mid-March, $5 million for a valuable commodity such as a pass-rush specialist might be high, but not outrageous, if they think Gbaja-Biamila's production will rebound if he's playing less and thus fresher when he's on the field.

    Gbaja-Biamila tied his career high for sacks with 13½ in 2004, but dropped to eight sacks in 16 games in 2005 and six sacks in 15 games this season. There's thought that as Gbaja-Biamila gets older, his effectiveness as a pass rusher, especially in the fourth quarter, will improve with Jenkins replacing him on most run downs.


    My own two cents: I would like to keep KGB, even at his current salary. With the cap increasing, I think if the Packers ask him to take a pay cut he will go somewhere else and earn about the same amount of money as he would with his current contract. KGB actually played the run very well for the first half of the season but then wore down. Jenkins would've been brought in earlier if he hadn't been hurt. I think Kampman benefitted a lot, especially earlier in the season, by KGB's presence on the other side. Also, Kampman wore down a bit at the end because he hardly ever got a breather.

    I would love to see a Kampman/Jenkins/KGB rotation at DE next season. Why not? Having three DE's who are legitimate pass-rushing threats is like having a really good third CB, or like having three good wide receivers on offense. It's maybe even more important, because you need to rotate those guys for maximum effectiveness.
     
  2. Timmons

    Timmons Cheesehead

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    I agree. He's not been stellar this year, but I think we keep him and rotate him in to keep everyone fresh. Other teams have to consider his presence on passing downs. He is fast.
     
  3. millertime

    millertime Cheesehead

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    keep him, unless we get a DE in the first round
     
  4. spardo62

    spardo62 Cheesehead

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    His price tag is high for the production we witnessed this past year. However, if he is brought in only as a rush specialist, one would hope that he could again put up the numbers of several years ago, thereby justifying the price tag.
     
  5. packerfan1245

    packerfan1245 Cheesehead

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    No, Hes too good on madden, I have his jersey, hes fast, hes good, and hes the man. Why not keep him?
     
  6. warhawk

    warhawk Cheesehead

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    If we don't have the depth to keep guys fresh and pressure the QB than we keep him.

    Depth. What a wonderful thing to talk about. Something we haven't had in years at really any position until this season.

    We're coming along guys. We're coming along.

    With a fresh front and everyone coming back to the same schemes for once and we will kick tail from day one. The first eight games this year I kept seeing Lombardi on the sidelines with that scowl on his face saying "what the hell's going on out there?".

    Not next year. Top 10 defense all the way.
     
  7. Buckeyepackfan

    Buckeyepackfan Cheesehead

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    KEEP HIM!!!!!
     
  8. longtimefan

    longtimefan Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Like your saying I think the team will wait till the draft and f/a ends , and maybe even training camp before deciding one way or the other on what to dow tih his contract situation..

    If they can get some one that could fill his role as a "pass rusher" and for less money, he probably will be gone..

    Its a smart move to wait now and see what happens.
     
  9. Tiger

    Tiger Cheesehead

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    I totally agree, i've been playing franchise mode on madden for the 2007 season and drafted Gaines Adams to replace KGB but so far Adams has been a bust and KGB has retained his starting position. :rotflmao:
     
  10. Zombieslayer

    Zombieslayer Cheesehead

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    If we can afford him, I say keep him. Have him play pass rushing downs only. I'd love to see KGB with double digit sacks. His presence takes some of the heat off of Kampman.

    Plus Packerfan1245 has his jersey. :joy:
     

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