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Packers’ 1st-team snap counts: Preseason Week 1

A look at who is getting burn with the A Team this summer.

Syndication: The Enquirer Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

Unlike most of the preseason games during head coach Matt LaFleur’s tenure, the Green Bay Packers featured the majority of their starters in their preseason opener on Friday against the Cincinnati Bengals. Just like we did for Family Night, Acme Packing Company charted which players were on the field for the Packers’ first-team offense and defense versus Cincinnati, in an attempt to pin down the team’s ever-changing depth chart.

Offensively, the first-team unit played 12 snaps on the night, all of which featured quarterback Jordan Love under center and an offensive line comprised of Yosh Nijman, Elgton Jenkins, Josh Myers, Jon Runyan Jr. and Zach Tom (left to right), as left tackle David Bakhtiari was held out of action. On defense, the team played 10 snaps with their first-team defense before pulling all of their starters.

Let’s get into the rotation we saw on Friday night. As always, the starters (in base defense, nickel defense, two-receiver sets and three-receiver sets) are bolded.

Running Back

  • 11 snaps: AJ Dillon
  • 1: Aaron Jones

Aaron Jones got the first snap as the team’s tailback, caught a pass and then immediately went to the sideline — where he’d spend the rest of the game. AJ Dillon has the “RB2” spot locked in, but, it is somewhat surprising that no other back on the team saw a snap with Love under center. On Family Night, the team’s third back was Tyler Goodson.


  • 12: Romeo Doubs
  • 11: Christian Watson
  • 8: Jayden Reed
  • 1: Samori Toure

Romeo Doubs and Christian Watson were on the field for virtually every single snap that Love was out there for, with the exception of Watson taking a one-play breather after being targeted on a deep route. Jayden Reed continued to come off the bench in 11 personnel (three-receiver) looks, which is how he’s been used all summer. Samori Toure subbed in for Watson on that single play, which hints that he’s currently WR4. Toure out-snapped Dontayvion Wicks nine-to-seven on first-team snaps last week on Family Night.

Tight End/Fullback

  • 12: Luke Musgrave
  • 4: Tucker Kraft
  • 1: Henry Pearson

Just like last week, Luke Musgrave took every single snap with the first-team offense on Friday. You can go ahead and write him down as TE1, though, “fullback” Josiah Deguara (calf) did miss both the preseason opener and Family Night with an injury. Even before Tyler Davis’ injury, which has now been reported as an ACL tear, it appeared that rookie third-round pick Tucker Kraft jumped him on the depth chart. Last week, Davis had five snaps with the first-team offense, while Kraft had just one. On Friday, Kraft had four and Davis didn’t record a single rep with Love. With Davis likely out for the season, this opens an opportunity for Kraft to compete with Deguara as TE2 moving forward.

Defensive Line

  • 7: Devonte Wyatt
  • 7: Colby Wooden
  • 6: T.J. Slaton
  • 3: Jonathan Ford
  • 1: Karl Brooks

One of the starters who was kept out of action in Cincinnati was Kenny Clark, who has apparently moved from nose tackle to defensive end this season. With Clark out, rookie fourth-round pick Colby Wooden was inserted as the starter at 3-4 defensive end. An interesting note here is that T.J. Slaton, who exclusively played 3-4 nose tackle on Family Night, did get a few reps at 3-4 defensive end against the Bengals, which allowed Jonathan Ford — a 2022 seventh-round pick — to play the nose. At times last season, the Packers only kept five defensive linemen on their roster, meaning that the final roster spot at the position could come down to Ford and rookie draft pick Karl Brooks, an end. The question is if the team needs a third nose (if you include Clark) or a fourth end.

Outside Linebacker

  • 7: Justin Hollins
  • 6: Kingsley Enagbare
  • 4: Lukas Van Ness
  • 3: Preston Smith

Preston Smith and Justin Hollins were the “starters” against the Bengals, just as they were on Family Night. Smith had a short game, though, being pulled after three snaps. The same was done with inside linebacker De’Vondre Campbell, cornerback Rasul Douglas and safety Darnell Savage.

On Family Night, first-round rookie Lukas Van Ness played 14 snaps with the first-team defense while Kingsley Enagbare exclusively worked with the second-team defense. That flipped on Friday, when Enagbare saw more snaps with the first-team defense than Van Ness. The OLB3-5 spots are very fluid right now, but there’s no better time for these players to get reps. With Rashan Gary off of the PUP list, it’s only a matter of time before he starts to take a good portion of those snaps away from these young players.

Inside Linebacker

  • 10: Quay Walker
  • 6: Isaiah McDuffie
  • 3: De’Vondre Campbell

Campbell and Quay Walker are the overwhelming favorites to be named the team’s starting inside linebackers, so there’s no major news on the first line of the depth chart here. Where we were surprised, though, was at ILB3. Last week, Eric Wilson played every first-team defense snap as Campbell’s replacement. On Friday, that honor went to Isaiah McDuffie. The ILB3 spot doesn’t appear to be settled, as of yet.


  • 10: Carrington Valentine
  • 7: Keisean Nixon
  • 7: Corey Ballentine
  • 3: Rasul Douglas

The star of the preseason, so far, is rookie seventh-round pick Carrington Valentine — who had three pass breakups against the Bengals. Quickly, Valentine has jumped Corey Ballentine and Shemar Jean-Charles, two players who saw playing time for the 2022 Packers, on the depth chart.

Valentine and Douglas started at outside cornerback on Friday, with Jaire Alexander held out and Eric Stokes (ankle) still on the PUP list. Keisean Nixon, who did not return a single punt or kick on the night, was working exclusively as the team’s nickel corner. When Douglas was pulled early, Ballentine came off the bench to sub in as an outside corner. The odd man out appears to be Jean-Charles, a former draft pick, who looks like CB7 on the depth chart when everyone is healthy.


  • 10: Jonathan Owens
  • 7: Tarvarius Moore
  • 3: Darnell Savage

Up until very recently, Rudy Ford looked like he was winning the starting safety job opposite of Darnell Savage. In the last two weeks, former Houston Texans starter Jonathan Owens has been able to build up some momentum, which allowed him to start on Friday and last week on Family Night.

Here’s the difference between Family Night and preseason Week 1 for Ford, though: Ford was the third safety off the bench last week. In Cincinnati, Ford did not see a single first-team defense snap, as special teams ace Tarvarius Moore filled in as the third safety.

Here’s some bonus content. Below are the number of starts that non-specialists had on core special teams units (kickoff, kick return, punt and punt return) against the Bengals.

  • 4: TE Tyler Davis (now injured) and CB Corey Ballentine
  • 3: ILB Eric Wilson, ILB Isaiah McDuffie, SAF Dallin Leavitt and SAF Tarvarius Moore
  • 2: RB Patrick Taylor, TE Tucker Kraft, OLB Kingsley Enagbare, ILB Tariq Carpenter and SAF Jonathan Owens
  • 1: RB Tyler Goodson (KRET), FB Henry Pearson, WR Jayden Reed (PRET), WR Bo Melton, OLB Lukas Van Ness, OLB Keshawn Banks, ILB Jimmy Phillips III, CB Carrington Valentine and CB Shemar Jean-Charles