Green Bay Packers star Aaron Jones has been one of the most productive running backs since entering the NFL. He ran for 1,084 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2019, and went up to 1,104 (with a jump from 4.6 to 5.5 yards per attempt) and nine touchdowns in 2020.
Of course, many wise NFL people would tell you not to overly invest in the running back position, because of how much talent there is at that spot, and how quickly running backs exit their prime years. There was speculation that the Packers would franchise tag Jones this year, but instead they will risk letting him hit free agency, and pursue a long term deal with the star out of UTEP.
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Packers hope to re-sign Jones ahead of free agency. Of course, there's no guarantee that he'll get locked up, and the team doesn't have a ton of room to work right now. Green Bay is projected to be a few million over the $183 million salary cap as of now.
The 26-year old Jones just wrapped up a four-year, $2.6 million deal after going in the fifth round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Spotrac projects a market value deal for the Packers stand-out at four-year, $58.4 million, good for over $14.6 million per year. That would put him just under the average annual salaries of top-end running backs like Alvin Kamara and Ezekiel Elliott, though he's a bit older than those guys when they signed their deals. The Green Bay Packers are coming off of back-to-back 13-3 years, and while losing Aaron Jones would be a big hit to the offense, 2020 second-rounder A.J. Dillon showed some serious flashes down the stretch last year. He gives the team some leeway to avoid going over the top on an offer here. [
Packers did not place their franchise tag on RB Aaron Jones, per source. Jones is headed to free agency, though Green Bay is attempting to re-sign him before he gets there.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 9, 2021