The Green Bay Packers 2022 season came to an end Sunday night at Lambeau Field when they lost a winnable game, 20-16 to the Detroit Lions. The Packers finished with an 8-9 record and finished in third place in the NFC North, a division they were favored to win.
The NFL is a business and every season, there are players who will not be back with the Packers next year.
Here is a look at 12 players on the Packers current roster who may not be back with the club in 2023. We analyze why they may not be back and what their chances are of returning to the Packers next season. Players are listed alphabetically by last name.
- S Adrian Amos
Amos is an unrestricted free agent as the four-year deal he signed to join the Packers in 2019 has now expired.
Amos gave the Packers three strong seasons at safety but his play fell off this season until rather late in the campaign.
The former Penn State star will turn 30 in April and the Packers are unlikely to make him a big offer to return. Amos can still be a valuable player but it is likely another team will offer him more money than the Packers for next season.
Chance of Returning: 30 Percent
- OT David Bakhtiari
Bakhtiari returned to the lineup after missing nearly all of 2021 due to a serious knee injury suffered before the 2020 season finale.
It took Bakhtiari a little time to get back to form, but once he did, he once again played at a high level. The Colorado alum was limited to 11 games this season because of his rehab from the knee and then an emergency appendectomy which cost him four games late in the season.
Bakhtiari told reporters he wants to return to Green Bay next season and he played well when healthy but staying healthy is a major issue. He may need to take a pay cut to return to Green Bay next season or the Pack may look to rework his deal to free up some cap space.
Chance of Returning: 65 percent
- WR Randall Cobb
Cobb will turn 33 in August. The veteran slot receiver caught 34 passes for the Packers this year for 417 yards and one touchdown. He was limited to 13 games due to injuries.
The only way Cobb could be back is if Aaron Rodgers returns next season. The Packers have younger, less expensive options at wide receiver and if Cobb returns, it will have to be at a reduced rate.
After the season finale Sunday night, the former Kentucky alum said it was too soon for him to think about his future with the team. He may choose to retire or seek employment elsewhere especially if Rodgers is traded.
Chance of Returning: 20 percent
- K Mason Crosby
Crosby had a bounce back year in 2022, hitting on 25-of-29 field goals and 37-of-39 extra points. His field goal percentage for the season was 86.2 which is above his career average of 81.4.
The veteran is the Packers all-time leading scorer and knows how to successfully navigate the cold and windy conditions of Lambeau Field in the second half of the season.
The issue for Crosby right now is kickoffs. He doesn’t consistently get the distance on them that he used to and that can create issues for the kick coverage squads.
Crosby will turn 39 next September. He has indicated he wants to return for a 17th season with the Packers but the question is whether GM Brian Gutekunst will want him back next year.
Chances of Returning: 55 percent
- RB Aaron Jones
Jones set career highs with 1,121 yards and 59 catches. He averaged 5.3-yards per rushing attempt and for much of the season, was the engine that made the Packers offense go. He is the perfect fit for the Packers offense and because of his speed and elusiveness, is a threat to break a long run any time he touches the ball.
Jones is under contract with the Packers next season, but his cap hit balloons to roughly $20 million the way the contract is presently structured. He will also turn 29 next December which is getting old for an NFL running back.
There is little doubt the Packers want to keep Jones but they may need to restructure his deal to reduce his cap hit for next season.
Chance of Returning: 75 percent
- WR Allen Lazard
Lazard was expected to be the team’s number one receiver this year but isn’t ideally suited to that role. He played in 15 games and set a new career high with 60 catches for 788 yards. Lazard is a great story, a player who worked hard and rose from undrafted free agent to starting wide receiver in the NFL. He has good hands and size and is one of the better blocking wide receivers in the NFL.
With the emergence of Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs, Lazard may not be back in 2023. In fact, he told reporters after the loss to the Lions that he has likely played his final game as a Packer.
The Packers probably would like to have Lazard back, but another team is much more likely to give him more money than the Packers can or would like to pay him.
Chances of Returning: 25 percent
- TE Marcedes Lewis
Lewis is not a big part of the passing game anymore. He caught six passes for 66 yards on seven targets. He remains a great blocker and leader in the locker room and at 38, he’s seen and done it all in the NFL. Having Lewis on the field is almost like adding a sixth offensive lineman to the game.
Matt LaFleur would probably welcome Lewis back if he wants to play another season. What “Big Dog” will decide remains uncertain and he may end up retiring.
Chances of Returning: 35 percent
- DL Dean Lowry
Lowry is an unrestricted free agent with his contract expiring at the end of this season. He was overpaid based on his ultimate production in 2022 and picked up 0.5 sacks and made 43 total tackles in 15 games.
Lowry is a hard-working player who should see most of his action in base defenses and running situations. He turns 29 over the offseason.
With the emergence of Devonte Wyatt and T.J. Slaton who are both younger and less expensive, it’s highly unlikely Lowry is back in Green Bay unless he’s willing to take a significant pay cut.
Chances of Returning: 20 percent
- RS Keisean Nixon
Nixon gave the Packers something they haven’t had in nearly two decades: a dangerous weapon as a kick and punt returner. The former Raiders special teams ace was brought in by Rich Bisaccia as a gunner but went over 1,000 yards as a kick returner despite not taking over that role until Week 8. He returned a kick for a touchdown becoming the first Packers player to do that since Cobb in 2011.
He finished the season averaging 28.8-yards per kick return and 12.7-yards per punt return, both excellent numbers.
The Packers will almost certainly want Nixon back but his outstanding performance may price him out of the market. Nixon took less money in 2022 to sign with the Packers to be reunited with Bisaccia. Getting him back should be a priority for the Packers but he may look for a bigger payday in 2023, one the Packers may not be willing to pay.
Chances of Returning: 50 percent
- DL Jarran Reed
Reed signed a one-year, prove-it deal with the Packers for 2022. He recorded 2.5 sacks and a career-high 52 tackles and 14 quarterback hits.
Reed is now 30. The Packers would likely welcome him back at a team-friendly rate but he can probably find a better deal elsewhere.
Chances of Returning: 30 percent
- QB Aaron Rodgers
The ball is largely in Rodgers’ court this offseason. He behaved like someone who knew the Lions game could be his last appearance at Lambeau Field as a Packer. But he also said he will take some time to decide about his football future.
Rodgers was not as effective this year as he has been in the past. He often missed open receivers and misfired on his throws. That was in part due to a broken thumb he suffered in Week 5 against the Giants and an inexperienced receiving corps after the departure of Davante Adams.
Despite playing all 17 games, he finished with the fewest yards passing of any season he stayed healthy in his career with 3,695 and his touchdown total dropped from 37 in 2021 to 26 in 2022. His interception total jumped from four to 12. His 91.1 quarterback rating was also the lowest of his career since becoming the starter in 2008.
Rodgers has $59 million reasons to return for another season, but he says that won’t be an issue. The future Hall of Famer could retire or demand a trade or the Packers could say they want to go in other direction and see what Jordan Love can do.
Chances of Returning: 55 percent
- TE Robert Tonyan
Tonyan returned from the season-ending knee injury he suffered last season but never really regained the explosiveness and ability to get downfield that he exhibited in 2020. He did catch a career-high 53 passes but averaged just 8.9 yards per catch which was a career-low.
The Packers may gamble that Tonyan can regain some of the explosiveness as he gets further removed from the surgery but it’s likely the former Indiana State star finds another team willing to offer him more money than the Packers are willing to pay.
Chances of Returning: 40 percent
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