Patriots Shouldn’t Pursue David Bakhtiari Despite Packers Connections

The Green Bay Packers announced their intention to release offensive tackle David Bakhtiari on Monday, which has people wondering where he’ll end up next.

You know where he shouldn’t land? New England.

It’s understandable that some folks’ immediate reaction would be wanting Bakhtiari. He’s a five-time All-Pro selection, and at his peak was one of the very best tackles in the NFL. He’s also got connections to the Patriots, as de-facto general manager Eliot Wolf and confidant Alonzo Highsmith, who now call One Patriot Place home, had a hand in drafting him more than a decade ago.

Wolf, who was then a director of pro personnel with the Packers, helped make quite the discovery in Bakhtiari, who was a fourth-round pick. He later developed into that franchise tackle we were talking about. It’s been awhile since he played at that level, however.

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It’s actually been awhile since he’s played at all.

Bakhtiari, who is now 32, tore the ACL in his left knee on Dec. 31, 2020, and wound up missing 42 of the 58 games he remained under contract in Green Bay. It could be argued he still hasn’t recovered from the injury, as his returns have been interrupted by three arthroscopic surgeries across the following three years. He also underwent an emergency appendectomy in December 2022 that caused him to miss three games. If the Patriots want a tackle that will actually see the field, Bakhtiari isn’t exactly a safe bet.

New England’s best option would be finding a way to convince the New York Jets to sign him. He’s a good friend of Aaron Rodgers, so that helps, but anything else to facilitate that signing would be beneficial.

If he needs some money for an Uber to the airport, the Patriots should give it to him. New England could even get player/general manager Matthew Judon to openly recruit him, which always seems to lead to the player going elsewhere.

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Bakhtiari was an incredible player during his prime, but it’s been three years since he was in it. The Patriots have tried signing high-upside, injury-slowed tackles in recent years, but it’s time to give it a rest.

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