While Jermichael Finley’s NFL future is currently unclear, there is one aspect of his drama that I consider a safe bet; the Green Bay Packers do not want to let him go.
Finley, who suffered a severe, possibly career-ending spine/neck injury in last season’s Week 7 win over the Cleveland Browns, caught 223 passes for 2,785 yards during his six seasons with the team, making him a fan favorite and one of the most feared tight ends in the league.
Unfortunately, the injury suffered against the Browns brought that to a grinding halt, forcing Green Bay to look elsewhere for Finley’s successor.
During last weekend’s draft, they appear to have finally found him in Cal’s Richard Rodgers, although General Manager Ted Thompson insists the two are unrelated.
“I don’t necessarily think the two are tied at all,” Thompson told the Milwaukee-Journal Sentinel’s Tom Silverstein earlier this week. “We were just trying to pick a good player.”
While what Thompson says could be true, I am not necessarily going to buy it. Had Finley stayed healthy throughout last season, it seems unlikely that the team would look for another tight end in the draft the way it did, especially since there were needs at other positions such as inside linebacker that were not addressed.