HomeTrade RumorsPackers May Release CB Jaire Alexander

Packers May Release CB Jaire Alexander

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Packers cornerback Jaire Alexander may have just one more game with Green Bay. The two-time Pro Bowler has been suspended for the club’s Week 17 game against the Vikings, and while he is expected to return for the regular season finale, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com makes it clear that Alexander may not be in the Packers’ long-term plans.

According to Schefter, Green Bay’s decision on whether to retain Alexander will hinge on the $8MM roster bonus that he is due on March 20. If the team decides to keep Alexander in the fold, it will simply pay out the bonus and move on. However, Schefter reports that the Packers could explore a trade or even a release before the bonus comes due.

Alexander signed a four-year, $84MM extension in May 2022, a deal that made him the highest-paid corner in NFL history in terms of average annual value (though his $30MM in full guarantees only ranked 12th among his cornerback peers). The Louisville product did nothing to make the team regret its decision in the first year of his new contract, as he earned his second Pro Bowl nod, intercepted a career-best five passes, and earned a stellar 80.3 overall grade from Pro Football Focus in 2022.

Unfortunately, 2023 has not been as kind to Alexander. He has missed nine games due to injury this season, and in his return after a six-game absence last week, he unexpectedly joined the designated captains for the coin toss — despite not being chosen as a captain — and called out “tails.” Though he won the toss, he made a critical error by saying that the Packers wished to start the game on defense, which is not the same as deferring to the second half. In other words, the Panthers nearly started both halves with the ball, and would have done so if head coach Matt LaFleur had not communicated his intentions to referee Alex Kemp prior to the game, and if Kemp had not clarified Alexander’s decision.

Alexander also expressed no remorse for the gaffe, instead implying that it was “only suiting” for him to join the captains since the game was in Charlotte and since he is a Charlotte native (a fact that he believed LaFleur was unaware of). Schefter adds that the Packers, who prefer their players to participate in their offseason program in Green Bay, do not like the fact that Alexander does not do so; indeed, Alexander forfeited a $700K workout bonus in the spring so that he could train in Florida instead.

Despite that, Dianna Russini of The Athletic (subscription required) hears that Alexander is not considered a “problem child” within the organization. Although the injuries are a concern — Alexander also missed all but four games of the 2021 campaign — his abilities, age (he will turn 27 in February) and the fact that a trade or release would create a significant dead money charge would seem to indicate that he will be back in Green Bay in 2024. However, Russini, like Schefter, believes that a parting of the ways is a real possibility.

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