Davante Adams said he wouldn't play under the franchise tag for the Green Bay Packers, and that appears to be the case.
The Las Vegas Raiders are acquiring Adams from the Packers in exchange for their 2022 first- and second-round picks, and giving the superstar receiver a new five-year, $141.25 million contract, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport and NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Thursday. Adams will make a per-year average of $28.25 million and becomes the new highest-paid wide receiver in NFL history, Rapoport added.
The picks being sent to Green Bay are the No. 22 and No. 53 overall selections in April's 2022 NFL Draft.
The trade was made official by the Packers on Friday.
"It's never easy moving on from a player and person the caliber of Davante Adams. We have so much respect for all that Davante gave on and off the field during his eight seasons in Green Bay as he was integral to all that we've accomplished," Packers general managers Brian Gutekunst said in a statement. "He is undoubtedly one of the greatest players in the storied history of the Packers and we look forward to him being enshrined into the Packers Hall of Fame one day. We wish nothing but the best for Davante, his wife Devanne and the rest of their family moving forward."
Rapoport reported that Adams' agents confirmed the Packers offered the wideout more money than the contract he'll receive from the Raiders, but it was his lifelong dream to play for the Silver and Black.
It's a deal that's quietly been in the works for days with the teams finalizing details and the contract extension for Adams being worked out. It is expected to be completed barring any late setbacks, per Rapoport.
Adams, 29, has long been part of a splendid tandem with two-time reigning AP NFL Most Valuable Player Aaron Rodgers, who recently re-signed with the Packers. Rodgers was aware during his contract negotiations that Adams "would never play for the Packers again" as "the situation was too far gone," Rapoport reported.
Adams' frustrations over contract negotiations, though he kept them largely quiet, date back to last summer, Pelissero noted.
While Adams is leaving behind a sensational tenure with the Packers and Rodgers, he is reuniting with his college quarterback Derek Carr, as the two played together at Fresno State. Adams recently purchased a house "right next to his new QB," Rapoport noted.
In their two seasons as Bulldogs, Adams led the Football Bowl Subdivision in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns, while Carr was atop the FBS in passing yards and passing touchdowns, per NFL Research.
Now, Carr, who's longed for a legitimate No. 1 receiver, has Adams, tight end Darrell Waller and receiver Hunter Renfrow at his disposal. The Adams deal could also lead to more good fortune for Carr. Rapoport reported the next step will be the Raiders working out an extension for the quarterback, as Adams came to Vegas knowing Carr would be there for a longtime to come.
In eight seasons with Green Bay, Adams has earned a quintet of Pro Bowl selections and two All-Pro nods, having emerged as arguably the top wide receiver in football. He's on the heels of a 2021 season in which he garnered a career-high 1,553 yards, a career-high 123 receptions and 11 touchdowns. It was Adams' fifth season with double-digit TDs, third over 1,000 yards and third with more than 100 catches.
Throughout the majority of his stay in Titletown, an ongoing storyline was Adams (and Rodgers) needing some help in the WR corps. Now he departs and the Packers are likely looking at Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb as their top two current receivers.
As for the Raiders, they've pulled off another blockbuster following the signing of pass rusher Chandler Jones to keep up in the AFC West arms race, which has commanded headlines in free agency and bolstered rosters with big names after big names.
Welcome to fabulous Las Vegas, Davante Adams.