If anyone following the Green Bay Packers was hoping to get an early idea on which players will be starting on the right side of the team’s offensive line in week one, think again. On Monday, head coach Matt LaFleur refused to reveal any information about that decision when speaking to reporters after practice.
LaFleur told reporters “I’d love to tell you, but I think you’ll have to wait and see on Sunday” when asked about the potential starters at right guard and right tackle. He further joked that the team would release its first injury report on Wednesday and that it would be the first potential information that the public would see about the situation.
Currently, Billy Turner is sidelined with a knee injury, which has put his availability for week one in serious doubt. That suggests that Lane Taylor will start at the right guard position, but right tackle is a much bigger question.
The team signed Rick Wagner this offseason as a potential stopgap on the right side. However, he dealt with an elbow injury in training camp that cost him several days of practice. The Packers could turn to a young tackle like Yosh Nijman, but he just came off the Physically Unable to Perform list about a week ago.
Another creative option might be to shift a guard outside and roll with a more established backup on the interior. Lane Taylor was impressive in a spot start at left tackle several years ago and could be a candidate to move outside with Lucas Patrick taking over at guard. Alternately, second-year pro Elgton Jenkins played some tackle in college, and he may be an option as well with Patrick stepping into Jenkins’ normal left guard spot.
For now, there is less certainty than ever on the Packers’ line. It will likely remain that way until shortly before game time on Sunday.
The Packers play the Minnesota Vikings in Minneapolis on Sunday at 12:00 noon Central.