There’s been an odd occurence for the Green Bay Packers this off-season. They are actually showing interest in some big name free agents.
News broke last week during the NFL Combine that former New York Giants DL Chris Canty would be visiting the Packers when free agency begins on March 12. Canty was one of the veterans the Giants have cut this off-season. He was a key part to their 2011 Super Bowl championship team. However, this isn’t the first time the Packers have shown interest in him.
During the 2009 off-season, prior to Canty signing with the Giants, he was scheduled to meet with the Packers. He never made that visit, deciding to sign with the Giants right away. Now, the Packers could be the only team willing to sign Canty, who’s coming off of knee surgery. This could be a Charles Woodson type signing for the Packers. He would ultimately be a upgrade for the Packers defensive line, which has lacked a playmaker since the departure of Cullen Jenkins. The other free agent the Packers are targeting is coming off of a Super Bowl appearance.
Ricky Jean Francois is a prototypical 3-4 linemen. Francois was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in 2009, but due to the 49ers immense talent on defense, he was buried in the depth chart. The Packers have shown interest in signing Francois, which would bolster their defensive line even more. It’s not that Francois is a bad player by any means. He was just lost in the depth of the 49ers. He’s good at stopping the run and quick on his feet. The Packers have had the most trouble recently in stopping the run.
It will take a while to erase the memory of Collin Kaepernick scrambling all over the place in the divisional playoff game, but signing these two would at least be addressing the problem. Coach Mike McCarthy and GM Ted Thompson seem to be aware that they have a weakness on defense. This is a great sign for all Packer fans because if the defense is shored up, it would mean another title could be in the near future.
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