clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Analyzing the Packers squad after the team set their 53*-man roster

Let’s take a look at your 2021 Green Bay Packers.

Green Bay Packers v Buffalo Bills Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images

Without further ado, here are your 2021 Green Bay Packers with some analysis, broken down by position, on why certain players were kept, why certain players weren’t, and who could be in play for practice squad spots moving forward.


Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers, Jordan Love

The Packers officially go into the season with a two-man quarterback room, which probably should be the case when a former first-rounder flashed the way Jordan Love did this preseason. Expect there to be an attempt to sign Kurt Benkert to the practice squad, with quarterbacks like Jake Dolegala and the twice-worked-out Donald Hammond being in the mix, if they can’t keep Benkert in Green Bay.

Running Back: Aaron Jones, AJ Dillon, Kylin Hill

In a crowded backfield, Patrick Taylor and Dexter Williams were unable to make the final roster. Taylor has practice squad potential that could lead to him contributing as a kick returner and as a non-ball-in-hand special teamer at some point this season. If a running back should go down, Taylor could be activated and may stick the rest of the season on the roster.

Wide Receiver: Davante Adams, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Allen Lazard, Randall Cobb, Amari Rodgers, Malik Taylor

Five of the six receivers to make the team were essentially roster locks by the time the preseason started. Malik Taylor took a race for the final receiver spot to the finish line with Reggie Begelton, a former CFL all-star. If Begelton doesn’t make a 53-man roster somewhere, expect him to re-sign to the Packers’ practice squad, as he had a quality preseason for the team. Taylor likely got the nod due to his age and ability to contribute in the punting game as both a vice and punt gunner.

Tight End: Robert Tonyan, Marcedes Lewis, Josiah Deguara, Dominique Dafney (SUS: Jace Sternberger)

The Packers kept four tight ends, who all have unique roles when they’re in the game. The question now is if Jace Sternberger, a true tight end, will bounce Dominique Dafney, essentially a fullback, off the roster when he is no longer suspended. Defensive end convert Bronson Kaufusi played well as a blocking tight end in the Marcedes Lewis role, making him a priority as a practice squad player.

Offensive Line: Elgton Jenkins, Lucas Patrick, Josh Myers, Royce Newman, Billy Turner, Jon Runyan, Dennis Kelly, Yosuah Nijman, Jake Hanson (PUP: David Bakhtiari)

The Packers are going into the season with a starting line of Jenkins-Patrick-Myers-Newman-Turner. Dennis Kelly is a swing tackle who has seen the vast majority of his reps this summer at right tackle. Yosuah Nijman is likely the next man up at left tackle behind Jenkins, after bouncing back from a poor performance in Week 1 of the preseason. The same is true for Jake Hanson at center. Jon Runyan is a hybrid guard-right tackle who was moved in and out of the starting lineup several times throughout the summer. Expect Ben Braden, who at one point was getting first-team reps at left tackle before Jenkins returned to play, to be considered for the practice squad. Whenever Bakhtiari returns from the PUP list, the rostered status of Nijman and Hanson may change.

Defensive Line: Kenny Clark, Kingsley Keke, Dean Lowry, TJ Slaton, Jack Heflin, Tyler Lancaster

The Packers officially keep six defensive linemen after much debate about if Jack Heflin or Tyler Lancaster would be cut. Heflin is the Packers’ only undrafted rookie who made the team in 2021. Willington Previlon, a late riser in the preseason, has a chance to join the practice squad.

Outside Linebacker: Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, Rashan Gary, Jonathan Garvin, Chauncey Rivers

One of the bigger surprises of final cuts was the fact that the Packers kept five outside linebackers, which may tell us how serious Za’Darius Smith’s back injury actually is. Following the season-ending injury of Randy Ramsey, there was much debate about who would rise out of the depths of the position to make the roster, but few predicted both Jonathan Garvin and Chauncey Rivers, who was picked up off of waivers before Family Night, would both make the team. Tipa Galeai, an athletic but undersized speed rusher who saw playing time over both Garvin and Rivers at times, should get looked at on the practice squad.

Inside Linebacker: De’Vondre Campbell, Krys Barnes, Oren Burks, Ty Summers, Isaiah McDuffie

Four of the five inside linebackers won roster spots pretty early on in the summer, but a late performance from Isaiah McDuffie, after missing time with injury, also earned him a spot on the team. Ray Wilborn, who flashed in the preseason, will likely be offered a practice squad nod if he doesn’t land on someone’s 53-man roster.

Cornerback: Jaire Alexander, Kevin King, Eric Stokes, Chandon Sullivan, Isaac Yiadom, Shemar Jean-Charles

Isaac Yiadom won the team’s fourth outside cornerback spot, nudging out Kabion Ento and Stephen Denmark. Ento is a quality cover corner but lacks a level of NFL physicality. Denmark showed some flashes of “sticky” coverage in Week 3 but was a late addition to the team. Both could be in play for a practice squad spot. Rookie Shemar Jean-Charles made the team, likely as Chandon Sullivan’s backup in the slotback role, which is where Jean-Charles played for most of the preseason.

Safety: Darnell Savage, Adrian Amos, Henry Black, Vernon Scott

The Packers have not shown many three-safety looks this preseason, a big change from the Mike Pettine era, but it is a bit of a surprise that the team only kept four players at the position, considering their special teams value. Christian Uphoff, somewhat of a special teams ace for a 2021 undrafted rookie, is in play for a practice squad spot. So is Innis Gaines, a strong safety who was often found with his nose on the ball this preseason.

Special Teams: Mason Crosby (PK), Corey Bojorquez* (P), Hunter Bradley (LS)

Corey Bojorquez was traded for today, after the Packers had already practiced with their initial 53-man roster, and punter JK Scott was released. Bojorquez is not officially a Green Bay Packer until he passes his physical, so technically the Packers are at 52 and not 53. We can all use common sense here, though. Outside of that, the special teamers are pretty chalk.


Full 53*-Man Roster

Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers, Jordan Love

Running Back: Aaron Jones, AJ Dillon, Kylin Hill

Wide Receiver: Davante Adams, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Allen Lazard, Randall Cobb, Amari Rodgers, Malik Taylor

Tight End: Robert Tonyan, Marcedes Lewis, Josiah Deguara, Dominique Dafney (SUS: Jace Sternberger)

Offensive Line: Elgton Jenkins, Lucas Patrick, Josh Myers, Royce Newman, Billy Turner, Jon Runyan, Dennis Kelly, Yosuah Nijman, Jake Hanson (PUP: David Bakhtiari)

Defensive Line: Kenny Clark, Kingsley Keke, Dean Lowry, TJ Slaton, Jack Heflin, Tyler Lancaster

Outside Linebacker: Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, Rashan Gary, Jonathan Garvin, Chauncey Rivers

Inside Linebacker: De’Vondre Campbell, Krys Barnes, Oren Burks, Ty Summers, Isaiah McDuffie

Cornerback: Jaire Alexander, Kevin King, Eric Stokes, Chandon Sullivan, Isaac Yiadom, Shemar Jean-Charles

Safety: Darnell Savage, Adrian Amos, Henry Black, Vernon Scott

Special Teams: Mason Crosby (PK), Corey Bojorquez* (P), Hunter Bradley (LS)