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Jake Hanson reverts to injured reserve for the Packers

Hanson has cleared waivers, which creates some options for his future.

New England Patriots v Green Bay Packers Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images

On Tuesday, the Green Bay Packers waived center Jake Hanson (shin) with an injury designation, allowing them the open roster spots to sign two new defenders. Hanson has since passed through waivers, per NFL reporter Aaron Wilson, which means that Hanson has reverted to the Packers’ injured reserve.

In the offseason, a player who is placed on injured reserve is not eligible to come off of the injured reserve during the regular season. By bypassing direct injured reserve through the waiver process, the Packers can now reach an injury settlement with Hanson, which would make him a free agent. Once healthy, Hanson would then be able to sign with a new team or return to Green Bay, unlike if he was put on injured reserve without being waived with an injury designation.

Based on the actions the Packers have taken in this circumstance, assume that Hanson is going to receive an injury settlement from the team — as they simply would have directly placed him on the injured reserve if they planned on paying him out 17 game checks to sit out with a shin injury. Whether or not Hanson will be re-signed by Green Bay down the line is more difficult to forecast.

Currently, the Packers only have two centers on their 91-man roster: returning starter Josh Myers and James Empey, who was claimed off of waivers last month. With that being said, other offensive linemen on the team have experience at the center position. Both Zach Tom and Jon Runyan Jr., the expected starters on the right side of the line, have taken center reps during training camp. Elgton Jenkins, the starting left guard on the team, also has played center for the Packers during regular season action.

Hanson saw limited playing time on the offensive side of the ball since being drafted in the sixth round of the 2020 draft, seeing most of his snaps come on special teams in the field goal protection unit. He did start, though, in the season opener last year against the Minnesota Vikings, the only start under his belt in Green Bay.