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Packers 2022 Roster Predictions: At edge, backup roles are wide open

The development of a 5th-round rookie will be crucial to the Packers’ edge depth.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 13 South Carolina at Missouri Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Continuing Acme Packing Company’s site-wide project breaking down the Green Bay Packers’ roster and predicting the team’s 53-man roster, our attention turns to the edge rushers. Rashan Gary and Preston Smith are entrenched as starters, with Gary ascending as one of the game’s elites, but depth is a serious issue for the team, and competition for the backup roles should be competitive. As one of the more vulnerable positions on the team, any hint of production from the down-roster players during camp could turn a former UDFA into an important backup, or even a rotational player.

Every option after Smith and Gary has some sort of developmental weakness that they’re trying to work out, be it lack of speed, power, technique, or frequent bouts with the injury bug. Whoever figures out their issues first will make this team, and given the nature of injuries in the NFL, will likely see some time.

Here is how we see the position breaking down.


Rashan Gary, Preston Smith

Green Bay has one the scariest pass-rushing duos in football. Between Rashan Gary’s insane pressure numbers and Preston Smith’s well rounded production on the other side, the Packers should have no trouble getting in the backfield. If Rashan Gary can take the next step in his development and improve his “read and react” rather than just flying up field, the defense will become truly scary, but even if he doesn’t, this defense is good enough across the board to cover for the minor deficiencies in his game. Preston Smith may not have Gary’s pass rushing chops, but his more well-rounded game is the perfect complement to Gary’s aggressive style.


Kingsley Enagbare, Randy Ramsey, Ladarius Hamilton, Jonathan Garvin

The backups, on the other hand, are a work in progress. The closest thing the Packers have to an interesting prospect is Enagbare. Even though he was drafted in the 5th round, his production in college was on par with several edge rushers taken in the first and second. His athletic profile is unusual (and lackluster) for Green Bay, but occasionally, scouting and production can trump a rough day at the combine.

Ramsey has had consistent injury issues, but his familiarity with the defense, and his special teams work makes him a valuable contributor. Jonathan Garvin hasn’t been able to put it together, but the former 7th rounder does possess elite athleticism, and if nothing else, can bring some value as a situational pass rushed. Finally, LaDarius Hamilton is a grinder who can, in a pinch, hold down an edge and contribute to run defense, but most importantly, he can do some dirty work on special teams.


Tipa Galeai, Kobe Jones, Chauncey Manac

Galeai has the raw speed to be a pesky situational pass rusher, but he gets bowled over too easily and hasn’t developed much in the way of soft skills. Kobe Jones is enough of a try hard guy to keep getting looks, but he simply lacks the athletic ability to make an impact at the NFL level. Chauncey Manac boasts an interesting athletic profile, and some advanced technique for UDFA, but he’ll likely need to do some practice squad work, either here, or for some other team, to show that he wasn’t just an old man beating up on kids at Louisiana.

Wednesday’s posts will focus on the inside linebacker position, which will likely see increased importance in 2022.

Read our roster preview for the edge position here.