B.J. Raji must earn big Green Bay Packers payday


The Green Bay Packers took care of Aaron Rodgers and Clay Matthews. They're content to play the waiting game with B.J. Raji.

NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reported Monday on "NFL Total Access" that the Packers plan to have Raji play out the final year of his rookie contract to see if he can "earn" a lucrative extension with the team.

Rapoport has been told that Raji is focused, in shape and eating healthy. The Packers are confident some tweaks to their scheme will help Raji, who will be asked to attack and create like he did in 2010. That was Raji's breakout season, which he finished with seven sacks.

The Packers' wait-and-see strategy comes with some risk, of course. If Raji has a big year, he'll become an extremely enticing option on the open market. It's a chance the Packers apparently are willing to take.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.