clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Packers have moved on from half of their 2022 practice squad

Only 8 of the team’s final 16 practice squadders remain on Green Bay’s 91-man offseason roster.

Green Bay Packers Mandatory Minicamp Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

With the amount of change that has happened to the Green Bay Packers’ roster in the spring, we decided that the end of the media-open OTA practices was as good of a time as any to check in on where the Packers’ final 2022 practice squad stands on the roster. We’re going to break down players into three groups: Practice squadders who didn’t sign reserve/futures deals, outside players who signed reserve/futures deals and practice squadders who signed reserve/futures deals.

Players from those groups, along with undrafted rookie free agents, are the players most likely to be retained as members of the 16-man practice squad in the upcoming season. If you want to get a feel for which players we expect to make the 53-man roster, check out our roster projection.

Practice squadders who didn’t sign reserve/futures deals

  • WR Travis Fulgham
  • WR Juwann Winfree
  • C Michal Menet
  • OLB Tim Ward
  • ILB DQ Thomas
  • K Ramiz Ahmed
  • K Matt Ammendola

The seven players above were not given an opportunity to return to the Packers after finishing the season on the team’s final practice squad. Only one of them, Winfree, is currently on an NFL roster (Indianapolis Colts), but both Menet and Ward played in the XFL earlier this year. Menet played well enough for the Seattle Sea Dragons to earn a minicamp invite with the Atlanta Falcons, but he wasn’t signed by the Falcons. Ward actually had a lot of success with the Houston Roughnecks, where he recorded five sacks in six games before going down with an injury.

Non-practice squadders who signed reserve/futures deals

  • CB Benjie Franklin (released)
  • CB Tyrell Ford
  • S James Wiggins (released)
  • K Parker White (released)

The four outside signings by the Packers to reserve/futures contracts, which functionally serve as no-risk placeholders on the 91-man roster, feature three players who have already been released. All three of Franklin, Wiggins and White were released in May to make room for undrafted free-agent rookies who signed elsewhere after the draft. This shouldn’t be surprising, as Green Bay is dishing out very little guaranteed money to undrafted free-agent rookies in an increasingly competitive post-draft market due to the team’s salary cap situation. Expect this roster churn to continue, as the Packers attempt to secure young depth in the secondary market throughout the summer. Ford, the lone outside signing who remains on his reserve/futures contract, is a special teams ace who was a two-time All-Canadian cornerback and comes by way of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Practice squadders who signed reserve/futures deals

  • QB Danny Etling
  • RB Tyler Goodson
  • WR Jeff Cotton
  • TE Austin Allen
  • TE Nick Guggemos (released)
  • OL Jean Delance
  • DL Chris Slayton
  • OLB LaDarius Hamilton
  • CB Kiondre Thomas

Unlike the outside signings, most of the internal players that the Packers signed to reserve/futures contracts are still on the team. The one exception is Guggemos, who was released when Green Bay signed undrafted free-agent receiver Jadakis Bonds two weeks ago.

You can make the case for any of the remaining eight members of the Packers’ final practice squad to sneak onto the 2023 squad, on either the 53-man roster or reserve team. Etling is one of just three quarterbacks in Green Bay and is currently taking second-string reps in padless practices. Goodson nearly made the 2022 Week 1 roster but was eventually edged out in the RB3 role by former practice squadder Patrick Taylor. Cotton has been making some noise in OTAs, noted for his chemistry with fifth-round quarterback Sean Clifford.

On the line of scrimmage, offensively, either Allen or 2023 undrafted rookie Camren McDonald will likely hold down the fort as the team’s practice squad tight end, as it’s unlikely that former draft pick Tyler Davis would be available to re-sign if the Packers do end up only keeping three tight ends on their 53-man roster. Green Bay went out of their way to stash offensive linemen on the end of their active roster last season, but Delance, who took a pre-draft visit with the Packers but only signed with the team after he was released by the Chicago Bears and Arizona Cardinals last season, has a chance of sticking. The college tackle was most recently seen working as a guard.

Defensively, Slayton nearly made the 53-man roster last season after a strong preseason. He should be competing with 2022 seventh-round pick Jonathan Ford for the team’s sixth defensive line spot this summer. Hamilton has played in nine games over the last two seasons in Green Bay, meaning that he is a strong practice squad option as long as he can fend off undrafted free agent rookie Benton Cox Jr. Thomas was on the roster bubble last summer and has even seen some reps with the first-team defense in OTAs, with Jaire Alexander and Rasul Douglas skipping out on voluntary practice and preferred starting cornerback Eric Stokes still out with an ankle injury.

It appears that the Packers are being very deliberate with which practice squadders they chose to bring back from 2022. Aside from receiver Juwann Winfree, who had already spent three seasons with Green Bay, it seems as though the Packers only retained the higher end of their practice squad options — which, in theory, should allow for more competition for undrafted free agent rookies to make the 2023 practice squad.

At this point in the offseason, I would expect that somewhere around 10 spots on the team’s 16-man practice squad will be filled by either undrafted free agent rookies and/or outside signings, once teams start to shuffle around their offseason rosters. At least on the surface, Green Bay’s front office has created a situation where there’s a lot of young competition on the team, ranging from starting roles at safety and on the defensive line all the way down to who will make the practice squad.