The Green Bay Packers’ passing attack is going to look a lot different in 2022 than it has in recent years. The Packers were able to successfully convince Aaron Rodgers to remain with the franchise, but they weren’t as successful when it came to his weapons at the wide receiver position.
Rodgers’ favorite target, Davante Adams, had the franchise tag placed on him. He made it clear he wasn’t going to play under the tag and the sides were very far apart on salary numbers, so Adams was traded to the Las Vegas Raiders in exchange for a first and second-round pick.
Replacing your No. 1 receiver is hard enough, but Green Bay will be replacing their No. 2 receiver, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, as well. Valdes-Scantling signed a three-year deal with the Kansas City Chiefs in free agency.
The front office has brought in numerous players to help fill the void, signing Sammy Watkins in free agency before spending some draft capital on help. The Packers traded up in the second round to select Christian Watson and used a pick later on Romeo Doubs. Green Bay seems content heading into the season without a surefire No. 1 target, but that could change if they hit the trade market.
One name to keep an eye on for the Packers, as suggested by Maurice Moton of Bleacher Report, is Diontae Johnson of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Johnson has produced some big numbers for the Steelers in recent seasons, taking over as their No. 1 receiver.
In 2021, Johnson caught 107 passes for 1,161 yards and eight touchdowns, as all three stats were career-highs. His 10.9 yards per reception for his career lead to some questions about whether or not he is a true No. 1 receiver, but a lot of that can be attributed to the offense that the Steelers ran with Ben Roethlisberger under center the last few seasons.
While Johnson did show up for mandatory camp, he could be angling for a big payday in the near future. Jeremy Fowler of ESPN appeared on 93.7 The Fan and shared that Johnson wants to stay in Pittsburgh long-term. However, receiving a top-of-the-market deal isn’t coming from the Steelers according to Mark Kaboly of The Athletic.
Having shown in the past that they can unearth talent at the wide receiver position in virtually any round of the NFL Draft, the Steelers could be open to moving Johnson, especially if they are offered a second-round pick as Moton suggests for the price.
The Steelers have Chase Claypool and rookies George Pickens, a second-round pick, and Calvin Austin, a fourth-round pick, on the depth chart behind Johnson. Veterans Miles Boykin, Anthony Miller and Steven Sims are behind them on the depth chart, so Pittsburgh could piece things together if they received an offer they liked for Johnson and don’t believe they will be able to work out a new contract.