A couple years ago, Muhammad Wilkerson received a five-year, $86 million deal after proving to be one of the most dominant defensive linemen in the National Football League in 2015.
Green Bay Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst and cap manager Russ Ball delivered a big-time talent on defense at a price point everyone should be able to agree on.
Wilkerson is clearly betting on himself to rehab his value around the league by playing for a year under Packers defensive coordinator Mike Pettine, his coach in NY for the first two seasons of his NFL career.
But Wilkerson had already visited Green Bay, and he was on his way to Washington. Wilkerson has remained a solid contributor in recent years, but the Jets didn't feel his play justified his salary. Coach Mike McCarthy fired defensive coordinator Dom Capers in January after nine seasons. Wilkerson spent the first seven years of his career with the New York Jets.
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It's fair to say Mike Daniels is pleased with the signing.
It can be considered a strong start to free agency for the Packers. The bigger positions of need are at cornerback and outside linebacker.
After a 12-sack season with the Jets in 2015, Wilkerson signed an $86 million extension to stay in NY.
Wilkerson, 28, was released by the Jets after a tumultuous 2017 season during which he had just 3.5 sacks, his lowest total since his rookie season.