Could Jermichael Finley be out of Green Bay after the 2012-13 season?
Don't expect Jermichael Finley to return with the Green Bay Packers.
Barring a shocking turn of events in the next month or so, tight end Jermichael Finley is playing his fifth and final season for the team.
Sources familiar with the Packers' thinking say the club not only wants to get rid of Finley but has decided to do exactly that in the off-season.
Given that Finley entered 2012 after his best season in 2011, the tight end clearly knows how to get open and make plays after the catch.
Unfortunately, this season has not been as effective despite Aaron Rodgers continuing to dice up defenses once again. Still, Finley does possess the size and overall athleticism to contribute elsewhere in pro football.
Here, we look at those where Finley fits best and are in the need of a pass-catching tight end.
Part of the reason the Chicago Bears rank No. 27 in passing offense is the protection.
Jay Cutler has been sacked 31 times and sports a 59.8 completion percentage.
Another part of that is Chicago not presenting a consistently reliable receiving tight end. Kellen Davis has only caught 17 passes on 41 targets and doesn't accumulate many yards after the catch.
Finley on the other hand, is in the midst of a down year and still producing more effectively. And it's not like Aaron Rodgers' pocket protection has been perfect either.
Brandon Marshall has his No. 2 receiving complement in Alshon Jeffery. Landing Finley simply completes Chicago's receiving corps.
Aside from needing a new quarterback, the Kansas City Chiefs don't have another well-established receiving target after Dwayne Bowe.
Yes, tight end Tony Moeaki enters Week 15 second on the team in yards (396) and receiving first downs (21).
Nevertheless, that impact pales in comparison to Finley who is more consistent against man coverage and making plays downfield. K.C. also offers one of the NFL's best running games with Jamaal Charles.
And that's without any sort of passing game.
So, Finley will never face double coverage or even a bracketed zone when releasing off the line. As a result, more targets which takes additional pressure off Bowe to improve the Chiefs' aerial assault.
Do the Atlanta Falcons need a tight end?
Well, yes and no.
No, because Tony Gonzalez remains among the best in pro football from every angle of the position.
Yes, because Gonzalez will be 37 years old before the 2013 season, whereas Finley will only be 26.
Finley also fits right into Atlanta's pass-first attack.
The Packers are literally a replica offense in terms of being fast-paced, so Finley going over the middle is capable of being a suitable replacement for the long-term future.
With receivers in Julio Jones and Roddy White outside, Finley won't miss a beat when provided opportunities to produce for the Dirty Birds.
Although Jared Cook has collected 523 receiving yards and scored four times in 2012, Jack Locker still needs a better-established receiving tight end.
Finley is more experienced across the board and is currently healthier as well.
Cook on IR w torn rotator cuff— John Glennon (@glennonsports) December 10, 2012
Without question are the Titans in the need of improving upon their No. 18 passing offense. So, getting Finley to upgrade the receiving corps will only assist in Locker's development.
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