On Tuesday, the Green Bay Packers announced the signing of 13 players on futures contracts. Futures contracts are essentially league-minimum one-year contracts that players who typically come from the practice squad level are eligible to sign once a squad’s season is officially over.
Nine of the players that the Packers signed came from their own practice squad: QB Danny Etling, RB Tyler Goodson, WR Jeff Cotton, TE Austin Allen, TE Nick Guggemos, OL Jean Delance, DL Chris Slayton, OLB La’Darius Hamilton and CB Kiondre Thomas. The only player among them who was activated to the active roster during the season was Hamilton, who played 24 defensive snaps and 26 special teams snaps over three games. In 2021, Hamilton played six games and recorded 64 defensive snaps and six special teams reps.
Goodson and Thomas were also given extended looks during the preseason, though, and were right on the edge of making the 2022 roster. Goodson played 60 snaps in the first half of preseason games, which actually led the Packers in 2022. Thomas tied Shemar Jean-Charles, who made the roster, in overall cornerback snaps in the first half of the preseason finale. Thomas is an outside cornerback whereas Jean-Charles splits time between outside and the slot.
It’s also worth noting here that the Packers have had their eyes on Delance for a while, too. While they have a full roster of offensive linemen set to return in 2023, the team brought in Delance as one of their 30 pre-draft visits in 2022 and hopped on the chance to sign him after Delance initially signed with the Chicago Bears as an undrafted free agent.
The seven practice squadders who have yet to sign a futures deal with Green Bay are WR Juwann Winfree, WR Travis Fulgham, OL Michal Menet, OLB Tim Ward, ILB DQ Thomas, K Ramiz Ahmed and K Matt Ammendola. Thomas, who has been on the practice squad since Week 3, fractured his femur In Week 18 and his absence could be injury related.
Four “outsiders” were signed by the Packers to futures deals as well: CB Tyrell Ford, CB Benjie Franklin, S James Wiggins and K Parker White. Ford is a 24-year-old Canadian national and former CFL player who played 18 games and made 10 special teams tackles for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2022. Franklin, like Delance, was a pre-draft visit for the Packers who actually was signed to Green Bay’s practice squad after final cuts but was let go during the 2022 season. Wiggins was a seventh-round pick by the Arizona Cardinals in 2021 and spent one week on the Kansas City Chiefs’ practice squad in 2022. White is the Packers’ only kicker under contract going into 2023 as starter Mason Crosby’s deal is set to expire and the team has yet to retain either Ahmed or Ammendola, the two kickers who were on Green Bay’s practice squad to end the regular season.
Here’s a breakdown of the Packers’ 2023 roster, by position, as it stands today:
- QB (3): Aaron Rodgers, Jordan Love, Danny Etling
- RB (4): Aaron Jones, AJ Dillon, Patrick Taylor, Tyler Goodson
- WR (5): Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, Samori Toure, Bo Melton, Jeff Cotton
- TE (3): Josiah Deguara, Austin Allen, Nick Guggemos
- OL (12): David Bakhtiari, Elgton Jenkins, Josh Myers, Jon Runyan, Yosh Nijman (likely-to-be-tendered RFA), Zach Tom, Royce Newman, Sean Rhyan, Luke Tenuta, Caleb Jones, Rasheed Walker, Jean Delance
- DL (5): Kenny Clark, Devonte Wyatt, TJ Slaton, Jonathan Ford, Chris Slayton
- OLB (5): Rashan Gary, Preston Smith, Kingsley Enagbare, Jonathan Garvin, La’Darius Hamilton
- ILB (3): De’Vondre Campbell, Quay Walker, Isaiah McDuffie
- CB (7): Jaire Alexander, Eric Stokes, Rasul Douglas, Shemar Jean-Charles, Kiondre Thomas, Tyrell Ford, Benjie Franklin
- S (4): Darnell Savage, Innis Gaines, Vernon Scott, James Wiggins
- K (1): Parker White
- P (1): Pat O’Donnell
- LS (1): Jack Coco
Assuming that Nijman is brought back on a restricted free-agent tender, which seems to be the consensus projection at this point, the Packers have 54 players under contract for next season.