Should the Green Bay Packers Re-Sign Donald Driver?
At least one member of that duo is ready to suit back up in green and gold if the team needs him.
As you might have guessed, it's Driver. The Vikings would be rather upset if the player they just handed $18 million in guaranteed money bolted for a division rival.
The 38-year-old wideout, who was in attendance at the Packers' charity softball game over the weekend, told reporters that if the team to came calling, he'd be ready.
For what it's worth...Driver: "I think the thing for me is if the Packers call midseason, I’d be in shape. I’ve been staying in shape."— Tyler Dunne (@TyDunne) June 16, 2013
It's not uncommon for recently retired players to reconsider, especially once their friends and former teammates begin reporting for the new season. However, Driver made it clear when speaking with Paul Imig of FOX Sports Wisconsin that when it comes to waxing nostalgic, he's a one-team man.
"I love the game, but I only love one team. When you love the game, you'll play for anybody. Anybody who offers you something, you're willing to step on the field and play for them. I decided that I love one team. But I do love the game. At the end of the day, if I get that itch, it would only be for the green and gold."
Unfortunately for Driver, the odds of his phone ringing—barring a catastrophe—aren't very good.
It's not like the Packers pushed him out the door and then forgot he ever existed. His 14 years with the team have been honored with a public retirement ceremony, a statue, a street named after him, the key to the city and a lifetime supply of cheese.
OK, so that last one might be made up. It may have been bratwurst.
With that said, there's also no denying that Driver's role in the Green Bay offense had all but evaporated by the 2012 season.
After topping 1,000 yards receiving in six straight seasons from 2004 to 2009, Driver barely totaled 1,000 yards in 2010 and 2011 combined.
The bottom fell out in 2012, with Driver making only eight catches all season long.
Sure, part of that is age. The other contributing factor is the biggest reason a reunion is highly unlikely.
The Packers just don't need him.
Even with Jennings' move across the NFC North, Green Bay still has excellent depth at wide receiver. Granted, none of the Packers' top three receivers topped 1,000 yards last year, but Jordy Nelson was hurt for parts of the season, James Jones led all NFL wideouts with 14 touchdown catches and Randall Cobb is a trendy pick to break out this year due to his ability to make teams pay after the catch.
Toss in a number of youngsters like second-year pro Jarrett Boykin and rookies Charles Johnson and Kevin Dorsey and the Packers would appear to have more than ample depth at the wide receiver position.
Of course that could change fairly quickly. There are circumstances that could get Green Bay on the phone to Driver.
As things stand today, only Nelson has a 1,000-yard season on his NFL resume. Injuries are a fact of life in the National Football League. Were one to strike one of the "big three" receivers, bringing Driver back could make some sense.
Yes, Driver may be a shell of his former self, but in a worst-case scenario his knowledge of the Packers' offense could come in handy if Green Bay's young and untested reserves were pressed into action.
A coach who isn't a coach, if you will.
In a best-case scenario, Driver would be able to turn back time for a season and at least provide the Packers with a serviceable slot receiver.
That's not very likely for a player who started playing in Green Bay when Aaron Rodgers was still in high school, nor is it likely that the Packers will be calling Donald Driver this year.
That's OK, though. In 14 NFL seasons the Green Bay Packers' all-time leading receiver had quite a run, including four trips to the Pro Bowl and a Super Bowl ring.
Now Driver should just kick back, relax, put the Packers game on the big screen...and enjoy a bratwurst or two.
He earned 'em.
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