Davon House saw his time in Green Bay nearing an end last December.
His rookie contract was almost expired. A shoulder injury had him stuck on the sideline. If he didn't heal quickly, House allowed, it was possible the fifth-year cornerback played his final game in a Packers uniform.
"You've got to be a realist," House said then. "I feel like I'm a realist. So, technically, I might have played my last game."
The end came Tuesday when House agreed to a four-year contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The deal will pay him between $6 million and $6.25 million per year, an NFL source said.
An ESPN.com report said the Packers made a run at House, but Green Bay offered "significantly less" money than the Jaguars.
House, who'll turn 26 in July, made it clear he wanted to be a starting cornerback, a role he flirted with in Green Bay but never settled into. A fourth-year pick in 2011, the 6-foot, 195-pounder had 98 tackles with two sacks and two interceptions in 40 games with 14 starts in Green Bay.
House still finished with 10 pass deflections in each of the past two seasons despite playing less than 50 percent of the defensive snaps. He comes with an injury history, though. House missed six games in 2012 (shoulder subluxation) and three more with the broken scapula last season.
He'll get a crack at a starting job with the Jaguars, who have made it a point to target young, ascending players in free agency. The move also reunites House with two of his college coaches, DeWayne Walker and Mike Rutenberg, from his time at New Mexico State.
With deals settled for wide receiver Randall Cobb and right tackle Bryan Bulaga, cornerback moves to the top of general manager Ted Thompson's to-do list.
The Packers will try to work out a deal to re-sign veteran cornerback Tramon Williams, who became a free agent Tuesday.
Green Bay has been in negotiations with Williams, who turns 32 years old next week. Several other teams also are interested. Williams could make a good argument for a $6 million-per-year salary after Seattle gave the 30-year-old Cary Williams $6 million per season.
Cobb and Bulaga reportedly accepted hometown discounts to stay with the Packers. Williams might have to follow suit. The market for cornerbacks seems to have skyrocketed after the three-day legal tampering period.
Byron Maxwell (six years, $65 million), Brandon Flowers (four years, $36 million), Kareem Jackson (four years, $34 million) and Cary Williams (three years, $18 million) have agreed to deals in the last few days.
Getting a deal done with Williams is a critical piece to Green Bay's offseason blueprint. Cornerback arguably was the Packers' greatest defensive strength last season. The Packers currently have five cornerbacks under contract for next year – Sam Shields, Casey Hayward, Micah Hyde, Demetri Goodson and Tay Glover-Wright – but only Shields is a proven option on the perimeter.