Mike Neal sacks Jake Locker

Look at the Green Bay Packers wheeling and dealing like man men in free agency! Maybe not the move that’s going to get your panties wet, but the Packers did re-sign outside linebacker Mike Neal on Wednesday.

Neal got a two-year deal that’s worth $8 million, including a $2.5 million signing bonus.

Neal will count $3.75 million against this year’s salary cap and $4.25 million next year.

We like this move.

Neal was the Packers second-best outside linebacker in 2013. He finished with five sacks, a career-high, and outplayed former first-round pick Nick Perry.

The great thing is, last year was Neal’s first at outside linebacker after moving from defensive end. He’ll only get better as he gets more comfortable with the position.

Neal also managed to stay healthy for all 16 games for the first time in his career in 2013. That’s not only astonishing for Neal, but it’s astonishing for any Green Bay Packers outside linebacker.

As you well know, both Clay Matthews and Perry are going to miss four-to-six games every year. Having an outside linebacker who can actually suit up for 16-plus games is a rare commodity in Green Bay.

One last tidbit — Neal’s negotiations with the Packers probably sped up after it was reported the Chicago Bears were interested, this morning. They settled for safety M.D. Jennings instead in a bold and impressive move.

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