What is the first thing you think of when you see the name Kevin King?
Is it the reception percentage of 70 which King gave up in 2020 — the highest of his four-year career — or is it King’s dominance against the Bears that saw him tally five pass break ups last year?
King has been a case study in tough love. You love to see him active on defense in 2019, a year in which he had five picks and even had a sack. But then you turn around and see King getting torched down the left sideline by the speedy Scott Miller in the NFC Championship Game to give the Buccaneers a commanding 21-10 halftime lead.
So with all of that background, can King start for the Packers this year? Can he beat out the rookie Eric Stokes?
For as maddening as King has been, I see the 26-year-old as the starter for the season opener. Starting a rookie is a tall order and remember, King has four years under his belt.
Which is why the Packers only signed him to a one-year deal. The Packers were unwilling to commit long term dollars to the Jekyll and Hyde cornerback. They wanted to give themselves some insurance in case Stokes doesn’t mature as quickly as they had hoped.
I have also read the other side. What if Stokes surprises in camp? Does King have to be fearful of making the roster? I would say no only because the Packers only have a cap hit of $1.9 million earmarked for King this year. That’s a small price to pay for depth.
I’m willing to bet that King made the majority of you all throw things at your TVs over the years. You’ve probably walked away in disgust or just closed your eyes and shook your head in horror.
So be warned. There is a great chance that King will start the season at cornerback. And history tells us that no matter how much we fall in love with King’s big plays, we will simultaneously fall into a pit of despair.
That’s the microcosm of Kevin King: shadows of pain through the glimpses of greatness.
Cory Jennerjohn is a graduate from UW-Oshkosh and has been in sports media for over 15 years. He was a co-host on “Clubhouse Live” and has also done various radio and TV work as well. He has written for newspapers, magazines and websites. He currently is a columnist for CHTV and also does various podcasts. He recently earned his Masters degree from the University of Iowa. He can be found on Twitter: @Coryjennerjohn