The football world is abuzz thanks to Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams being traded to the Las Vegas Raiders after the franchise-tagged star was unable to secure a long-term contract in Titletown.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter has the details:
🏈Raiders get Davante Adams.
🏈Packers get two 2022 picks, including the Raiders’ first-round pick, per sources.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 17, 2022
The Raiders immediately locked up their prized pass-catcher to a five-year, $141.5 million contract, per several media reports.
Raiders fantasy football outlook
Adams is reunited with his collegiate teammate in quarterback Derek Carr, and the drop-off in production shouldn’t be drastic coming from Aaron Rodgers, the reigning MVP of two years running. The 29-year-old Fresno State receiver is coming off a career-high 123 catches, which almost certainly won’t be replicated. It was his third 110-plus catch season in the last four years, and Vegas didn’t acquire him to be an observer. Adams is a top-five receiver lock and likely will be in the top three of just about every format that rewards for catches.
Carr becomes a legitimate top-five quarterback contender with the likes of Adams, Hunter Renfrow and Darren Waller, which is about as dynamic of trio as the league has to offer. On the surface, Renfrow takes the biggest hit to his fantasy stock with the addition of Adams. A reception-dependent fantasy commodity, Renfrow may struggle to approach 80 grabs, let alone the 103 mark he set in 2021.
It’s a net positive for Waller’s outlook, since he’s no longer going to be the focus of nonstop double-teams. Adams draws so much attention that Waller’s athleticism and size will force defenses to pick their poison. He’s among the top two or three players at his position.
Running backs Josh Jacobs gets a significant boost, too, because even with all of the weapons, Josh McDaniels’ system emphasizes the ground game. Defenses now have to account for a number of dangerous aerial weapons around the goal line, which benefits Jacobs in an area where he’s at his best. He’s a low-end No. 1 back in most situations, but gamers should lock up Kenyan Drake as a handcuff given Jacobs’ injury history.
Packers fantasy football outlook
The obvious question is how does this team replace all that is Adams? The free-agent market is drying up as an injured Odell Beckham Jr. (knee), who’s expected miss roughly the first two months of the season, is the top remaining option. No one available is an immediate replacement, that’s for sure. The Packers are likely to invest a first-round pick on a wideout now that Aaron Rodgers is locked up.
Speaking of the $200 million man, Rodgers’ best weapon is gone, and there’s no easy way around it: This will hurt his fantasy stock. He’s still a midrange to low-end QB1, but gamers will have plenty of options with more going for them at this deep position.
Allen Lazard will stand to get the most notable boost in value, presuming the Pack cannot secure a legitimate WR1. For now, until the position fills out, he’s the de facto No. 1 target for Rodgers. There’s sound No. 2 PPR worth here if the position isn’t addressed beyond depth material, so we’ll revisit this as more is known.
We’ll see second-year receiver Amari Rodgers make his case for more targets. He’s far closer in style and stature to Randall Cobb than Adams, and there’s far too much yet to be resolved to make any kind of definitive proclamation about how these two will coexist from a target perspective. The younger Rodgers has far more upside, but he landed just four passes in his rookie season. Cobb is reliable over the middle and No. 12 loves him, though the veteran enters his age-32 season as a career-long injury liability. Neither is poised to be better than a third wideout at the moment.
WRs Juwann Winfree and Malik Taylor round out the current depth. Re-signing free-agent WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling may become a higher priority now, and the Packers also could work to get tight end Robert Tonyan under contract again to help keep some continuity intact.
To a degree, we’re probably going to see a shift in offensive philosophy that relies more on the talented tandem in the backfield and matriculates its way up the field with less explosiveness. Aaron Jones is fringe No. 1/RB2, whereas AJ Dillon is closer to flex/depth territory.
We’ll get a better scope the nuances of all things Packers offense once the dust of free agency settles as well as after incoming rookies are rostered. This situation will be examined in greater detail after the 2022 NFL Draft.