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Packers Morning Buzz: Antonio Brown to Green Bay? Oddsmaker likes chances

Stu Courtney
Packers News

Welcome to your Morning Buzz, rounding up news and views regarding the Green Bay Packers from around the web and here at PackersNews.com.

We'll start with Zach Kruse of Packers Wire writing that at least one oddsmaker ranks the Packers as favorites to sign controversial free-agent receiver Antonio Brown. Kruse reports that BetOnline gives the Packers 2/1 odds of signing the former Pittsburgh Steelers star.

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown (84) celebrates his touchdown on a 33-yard reception during the fourth quarter of their game Sunday, November 26, 2017 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pa.

Kruse writes:

The Packers sit above the Seattle Seahawks (5/2), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3/1) and Baltimore Ravens (4/1) as the betting favorites for adding Brown.

A true superstar with the Steelers, Brown devolved into an unstable and combustible mess over the last year. The NFL already suspended him for half of the 2020 season. He played in only one game last season after being traded from the Steelers to the Raiders and then joining the New England Patriots after forcing his way – through pure insanity – out of Oakland.

The Packers may have a need at receiver, but adding Brown to a tight-knit locker room lacking disruptive, me-first players is likely the last thing on GM Brian Gutekunst’s to-do list as training camp begins.

You can read more about Brown here:

ESPN's Rob Demovsky talks to a scout who thinks the Packers should sign Brown:

There doesn't seem to be any urgency by any team to sign Brown during training camp, since he's facing an eight-game suspension:

Packers center Corey Linsley has no plans to wear a face shield:

A face shield also is a non-starter for Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald:

Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com presents his power rankings of the eight NFL divisions, and in placing the NFC North at No. 6, he calls the defending division champion Packers "poster boys for regression." 

La Canfora writes:

6. NFC North

We are projecting here, not just looking back at last year's standings. The Packers were not as good as that record and look to be the poster boys for regression. Uber-conservative offense and a defense that got worse, by far, as the sample size increased. Oh yeah, and they managed to get on the bad side of their Hall of Fame QB, and that's not going away anytime soon. Minnesota will be what it's been for years — Meh. Good enough to get your attention for a while before fading back to mediocrity. And ownership just doubled down on that with extensions for the brass! They'll go 10-6 and win the division and get whacked in January. I could see the Lions creeping to mediocrity, but that's not anything to jump up and down about. Chicago is about to rebuild, again, only they are the only ones who don't seem to realize it. 

You can read his entire division rankings here:

Aaron Rodgers is a no-brainer, but who are the other potential Hall of Famers on the Packers' roster? ESPN's Bill Barnwell identifies three players and their percentage chance of reaching NFL immortality:

Lock (100%): QB Aaron Rodgers. He's going to get in on the first ballot.

Work to do (10% to 39%): WR Davante Adams, OT David Bakhtiari, LB Za'Darius Smith.

Adams hasn't been able to break through the Julio Joneses of the world to earn a first-team All-Pro spot, which is probably where he needs to get. Bakhtiari, likewise, is blocked by Tyron Smith.

Za'Darius Smith might have been the best pass-rusher in the league last season and has been great over the past two years on a snap-by-snap basis, but he turns 28 in September. James Harrison was a backup for four seasons, started regularly for the first time at 29, and probably won't make the Hall of Fame despite a pretty spectacular peak. Smith needs a similar sort of run over the next few years to have a shot.

You can read the entire story here:

And finally:

Contact Stu Courtney at (920) 431-8377 or scourtney@gannett.com. Follow him on Twitter at @stucourt