The 2022 offseason could signal a changing of the guard at quarterback for the Green Bay Packers, but what about the changing of the guard….at guard?
After suffering a ridiculous amount of injuries along the offensive line last season, the Packers were forced to move around many players into multiple positions. Guards became tackles, centers became guards, and somehow the Packers thrived. It was such a remarkable performance it earned position coach Adam Stenavich a promotion to offensive coordinator.
Heading into 2021 the Packers appeared set at at least one guard position with Elgton Jenkins but he was forced to move to left tackle with David Bakhtiari’s extended rehabilitation of a torn ACL he suffered at the end of the 2020 season. When Jenkins tore his ACL in Week 11 this past season, the dominoes continued to fall along the line.
Moving ahead to 2022, Jenkins presumably will return to left guard fully healthy after healing. He likely lost out on an early monster extension when he hurt his knee but he could still make a big payday this season with a strong performance in the final year of his rookie deal. He possibly could be moved to right tackle if Billy Turner is a cap casualty but the Packers are likely to go elsewhere there (Yosh Nijman or a draft pick?).
Right guard is where the big change could be. Jon Runyan Jr. has earned the right to be opening day starter there based on what he showed in 2021 and there is little that could change that barring a slam dunk draft pick coming in and blowing everyone away. Runyan overtook Lucas Patrick early in the season and never looked back. Patrick would remain a solid depth signing but this is now Runyan’s job, or at least it should be.
Evaluating the offensive line is going to be a big part of the offseason for Green Bay and it’s something they can get started on regardless of who the starting quarterback ends up being and settling the guard position would be a big first step in establishing their best five before OTAs start.
The law of averages says the Packers offensive line should be much healthier for 2022 and not constantly rotating parts should help production. Consistent reps at one position are obviously best for any player and that should help shore up issues at guard especially if Jenkins doesn’t miss a beat upon return.
The headline states the obvious of course but the Packers are not going to be able to do much until they know Aaron Rodgers’ plans which will in turn affect Davante Adams even if he is placed under the tag. Luckily for everyone, Rodgers’ decision should be coming sooner rather than later.
You might have seen De’Vondre Campbell’s instagram story yesterday. With midnight being the deadline before his void year kicks in, it appears no deal was made with the All-Pro linebacker. That said, don’t take silence as meaning nothing happened. Watch this space for future development.
If you want to become an owner of the Green Bay Packers, this week is your last chance to do it when the current stock sale ends on Friday.
This might sound like an easy way to set a world record right? Go buy a bag of M&M’s and try it. You’ll think twice.