Green Bay Packers: 5 Players Who May Be Gone Next Season

Tyler BrookeSenior Analyst IIOctober 24, 2012

Green Bay Packers: 5 Players Who May Be Gone Next Season

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    As a Packers fan, it always hurts to see a player retire, be released or— though not often—traded.  

    Packers fans are used to seeing players play for their entire careers at Lambeau, and when they leave, we usually feel upset.

    Recent Packers that come to mind are Al Harris, Nick Collins, Javon Walker and yes, even Brett Favre.

    Whether we like it or not, the odds of every Packer returning after this year are unlikely, and this year we may lose a few.

    Here are five Packers players we may not see next year.

Donald Driver

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    We may hate to think about it, but this is most likely Donald Driver's final season in the NFL.

    Driver is currently 37 years old and, quite frankly, hasn't done anything this season.  He's only caught four balls, and only one of them for a score.

    Driver has been playing since 1999, and has had an incredible career with Green Bay. With 10,105 yards and 60 touchdowns, it's safe to say he's one of the best, if not the best, Packers receiver of all time.

    The Packers don't need Driver at this point with the amount of firepower they have already.

    While it will hurt to see him retire, he had an incredible career, and even was able to win a Super Bowl.

Greg Jennings

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    It seems like everyone's beginning to talk about this one.

    Greg Jennings may not be in the green and yellow next season. He's on the last year of his contract, and injuries have been keeping him off the field for the past two seasons.

    Jennings is another players the Packers could consider expendable. While this is not saying he isn't a talented receiver, which he most certainly is, it's just that they are stacked at the receiver position.

    With the emergence of Randall Cobb, the Packers now have three great options at receiver without Jennings.

    Jennings will be expecting a big contract, so unless he is willing to get paid less, which I can't see, expect him to play for someone else next season.

Jermichael Finley

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    Jermichael Finley has not been performing to expectations for Green Bay in the past two years.

    Finley has had constant issues with drops, and is almost starting to become a liability for Green Bay's offense.

    In the previous three seasons, Finley had 16 passes. His drop-rate was 10.9 percent—not a pretty number to see.

    Along with the drops, Finley has had problems with talking to the media.  Finley has mentioned several times that there has been a "chemistry problem" with him and Aaron Rodgers. The quotes have been distractions for the team, and at this point they can't afford distractions.

    Finley has also been injury-prone. Finley hurt his knee in 2010 and missed the rest of the season. This year, he is being slowed down by a shoulder injury.

    Finley still has another year on his contract after this season, but it doesn't feel like he will be here long enough to finish it out.

James Starks

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    It's been a while since the emergence of James Starks as an impact player in Green Bay's 2010 playoff run.

    Since then, Starks has never again produced at that level. Last season, he played in 13 games, only running for 578 yards and one touchdown.

    These numbers aren't horrible for a team that constantly passes the ball, but the Packers want a more reliable option.

    Green Bay signed Cedric Benson before the season, and even though he is injured, it feels that he will be the starter for the next few years. Alex Green is playing good enough for a backup.

    With Starks being the third running back now, it seems unlikely that he will stay in Green Bay and would prefer a team where he can at least be a backup.

Charles Woodson

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    I really hope this doesn't happen, and I don't feel that it will.

    But it is certainly a possibility.

    Woodson is currently 36 years old—which is old.  His age has started to affect him, as he isn't as quick and physical as he used to be.

    Before the injury, Woodson was playing safety. Woodson has been a cornerback his entire career, so to see him at safety seems odd.  

    He certainly hasn't produced the way he used to at the position, with only one interception and one forced fumble.

    The idea of Woodson retiring is not something Packers fans want to think about, but it's something we have to start thinking about.  

    If he doesn't retire this year, he likely will in the next couple of years.