OTAs are almost over and there are plenty of Packers 53-man roster predictions going around. Unlike many other years, much of the roster seems set this season. A cursory look at the depth chart shows somewhere around 40 locks to make the roster between productive veterans and young players with significant potential.
Of course, a few of those 40 could end up as surprise cuts or trades, but there are likely between 10 and 15 roster spots up for grabs. Let’s take a look at some surprise candidates for those spots.
Benkert seems like a great guy, has a fun Tiktok, and has shown some potential in the preseason. He just isn’t going to unseat Jordan Love as the team’s number 2 QB. In a year when there are 40 guys competing for 15 spots (max) the team will likely choose to keep 2 QBs on the 53 and one on the practice squad.
The surprise would be if Jordan Love has a great preseason and Green Bay manages to trade him prior to the season. At that point, Benkert would be the obvious choice for QB 2.
The running back room is already chock full of players. Jones and Dillon may be the best tandem in the league. Kylin Hill showed a lot of potential early last season. And Patrick Taylor also has the goods.
For Goodson, it comes down to beating out Taylor. They’re pretty close to opposite players, at least size wise. Taylor is a bigger power back and Goodson is an Aaron Jones sized speed back.
Goodson will need to impress with his breakaway ability – show LaFleur that he can take jet sweeps and wide zone runs to the house – and show that he can handle pass protection and running crisp routes.
I think it’s doable. Goodson’s highlight tape, at least, looks great and his pure 40 speed is faster than any back the Packers have had for a while. On paper, he’s the type of guy who wouldn’t look out of place running for 200 yards in a game on the 49ers under Kyle Shanahan.
Walker was the Packers best value pick, and according to some prognosticators the best value pick of the draft. The former 4-star recruit was projected to go in the third round and fell all the way to the seventh.
Right now, the forecast from most is a year on the practice squad for Walker, who is aa little rough around the edges. I think a spot on the 53 is possible, even though the room is just as crowded as the RB room.
There are a lot of offensive linemen with potential on the Packers’ roster but outside of Walker, Yosh Njiman, and David Bakhtiari (who the team seems worried about still) they’re mostly guard types. Add in the time Walker has spent in OTAs on the d-line and Walker may be able to secure a surprising spot on the 53 this season.
Ok, Rodgers shouldn’t be a surprise, but so many people have already written him off that it’s at least surprising that I thin he should be considered a lock. The Packers just don’t release second-year third round picks.
Rodgers has slimmed down this offseason and will hopefully have more of the explosion he showed in college back. At his best, he can be a dynamic runner with the ball in his hands, run routes of out the backfield, be the jet sweep guy, and even play RB in a pinch. I doubt Gute is ready to give up on him just yet.
Mike Price is a lifelong Packers fan currently living in Utah. You can follow him on twitter at @themikeprice.