PFF projects $11M per year valuation for Packers free agent WR Allen Lazard
Keeping Allen Lazard in Green Bay probably won’t be a cheap proposition for the Packers.
According to projections from PFF’s Brad Spielberger, Lazard – who will be an unrestricted free agent – may command $11 million per year on his next deal. Spielberger’s prediction: Three years, $33 million, with $21.5 million guaranteed.
A big payday is coming for Lazard, the 2018 undrafted free agent who played last season on the $3.96 million restricted tender and previously made less than $2 million in total salary during his first two seasons in Green Bay.
It’s worth noting here: Last year, Spielberger projected a $10 million per year valuation on Marquez Valdes-Scantling, who eventually signed a three-year, $30 million deal with the Kansas City Chiefs.
As was the case for Valdes-Scantling, Lazard might become too expensive on the open market for the Packers to retain.
Factors working in Lazard’s favor: The free agent market at wide receiver is lacking, Lazard offers a unique skillset as a do-it-all receiver with tight end size and playstyle, and he’s coming off a career-best season in which he set new career-highs in catches, targets and yards.
The Packers elevated Lazard into the No. 1 receiver role in 2022, and he caught 60 passes on 100 targets for 788 yards and six touchdowns over 15 games. He caught 60 percent of his targets and averaged 7.9 yards per target. In 12 of 15 games, Lazard had either 50 yards receiving or caught a touchdown pass or both.
A new era at receiver has arrived in Green Bay; 2022 rookies Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs are now providing the long-term foundation at the position. Watson looked like a true star as a first-year player, while Doubs flashed enough high-level moments for the Packers to think he could be an excellent complementary option. General manager Brian Gutekunst would likely prefer to have Lazard back as another complementary weapon, but putting all the puzzle pieces together always requires a hard look at the financial side, and it’s possible Lazard will become too expensive for the Packers to keep in 2023 and beyond.
Packers free agent review: WR Allen Lazard