Sport

Packers want to keep Aaron Jones, but not at top-tier running back pay

The Packers decided not to place the franchise tag on running back Aaron Jones, but multiple reports say they still want to re-sign him. However, the offer they’re making him doesn’t appear to be one he would accept.

Jones has been offered “more than $9 million per year” from the Packers, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. The report didn’t say how much more than $9 million, but suffice to say that wording means they’re offering him less than $10 million a year.

Jones surely wants to be paid closer to the top tier of running backs. Christian McCaffrey makes $16 million a year, Ezekiel Elliott and Alvin Kamara make $15 million a year, and Dalvin Cook, Derrick Henry and Joe Mixon are all in the $12 million to $13 million a year range.

The Packers recognize that teams often regret giving top-tier pay to running backs, and the Packers also spent a second-round draft pick on running back A.J. Dillon last season and see him as a viable replacement for Jones, should Jones head elsewhere. So it’s not likely that the Packers would pay Jones what he’s looking for.

So while the Packers may want Jones to stick around, the most likely scenario is that when he hits free agency in a week, he quickly leaves for a team that will pay him more than the Packers.