If the Green Bay Packers want to capitalize on their quickly closing Super Bowl window, general manager Brian Gutekunst should be prepared to make a sizable offer to acquire Texans wide receiver Will Fuller.
The Packers are reportedly one of several teams that have reached out to the Texans about a possible trade for Fuller, according to Aaron Reiss of The Athletic. A trade won't be easy, however, as Reiss noted the Texans aren't planning on having a fire sale as they search for a new general manager and head coach.
The 26-year-old Fuller is only under contract through the end of the season, and he makes plenty of sense in Green Bay.
Through Week 7, the Packers have looked like one of the best teams in the NFC with a 5-1 record and a high-powered offense that ranks second in the NFL at 32.8 points per game. However, the lack of depth at wide receiver has still been noticeable, and they've beaten up mostly bad teams: Vikings, Lions, Saints, Falcons and Texans.
Davante Adams is a superstar when healthy. However, Malik Taylor was the only other wide receiver to record a reception last week, and he's logged all of three receptions for his career.
Promising young receiver Allen Lazard was back at practice for the first time since suffering a core muscle injury in Week 3, but even if he were 100 percent, that's not enough. Marquez Valdes-Scantling has struggled to make plays, while Equanimeous St. Brown hasn't been able to stay healthy.
The lack of depth has been glaring when Adams and Lazard have been out. Taylor and Darrius Shepherd went undrafted in 2019, but both were on the field for most of the Week 4 Monday Night Football matchup against the Falcons with Adams and Lazard out. They combined for just three receptions and 41 yards.
After being criticized for not taking a wide receiver in the 2020 draft, the Packers have a chance to redeem themselves. Many fans were hoping for a wideout in Round 1, but instead the team took Rodgers' eventual successor in Jordan Love.
Interestingly, only one first-round pick has ever been on the receiving end of a Rodgers touchdown: Marcedes Lewis. So perhaps we shouldn't have been surprised when the Packers ignored the position.
But back to Fuller...
He has racked up 187 receptions for 2,721 yards and 21 touchdowns in just 49 games, and he's been especially productive this year. He would complement what Adams does well by being a deep threat—he ran the 40-yard dash in 4.32 seconds, after all. He would be a clear upgrade over Valdes-Scantling, who has struggled in his role as a deep-threat speedster this season.
Offensively, the Packers have had issues against the Buccaneers and 49ers the past two seasons. The two games against the 49ers were particularly demoralizing in 2019; they lost 37-8 in the regular season before falling 37-20 in the conference championship.
When tough defenses have been able to stop the run, they've keyed in on Adams.
Fuller could help change that.
Although he counts for $10.2 million against the cap this season on his fifth-year option, the Packers would only need to pay a portion of that. Gutekunst would then get a decent sample size before considering a long-term contract offer.
Although the current asking price for Fuller might be high, the 1-6 Texans should ultimately try to move him. The Packers are already Super Bowl contenders, but if they want to solidify that status, they should make a competitive offer for Fuller.