Kris Burke: My Initial 53-man Packers Roster Prediction

ALLGBP.com All Green Bay Packers All the Time
Packers on the bubble will be seeing this face VERY soon

It’s the time of year every NFL general manager seems to dread.  Selecting your final 53 man roster to bein the regular season.

Green Bay Packers GM Ted Thompson has arguably the toughest job in the league with perhaps the deepest team in the NFL. It’s tough to predict what is going through the mind of the mysterious Packers GM, but I’ll give it my best shot.

OFFENSE-27:

Quarterback -3: Rodgers, Flynn, Harrell

I think you have to keep Graham Harrell around.  The trade speculation around Flynn doesn’t want to go away and the more time he spends learning from McCarthy, the better. He showed promise against the Colts.  I’d be willing to bet this time next year Flynn is elsewhere and Harrell is the number two with a rookie on the practice squad.

Running Back -5: Grant, Starks, Green, Kuhn, Johnson

Pretty easy to see here.  The only question remaining is which order Ryan Grant and James Starks are in on the depth chart against the Saints.  It will start as a shared load but who knows what else will happen as the season unfolds.

Wide Receiver -6: Jennings, Driver, Nelson, Jones, Cobb, West

West locked in his spot after his display of talent against the Cardinals.  Tori Gurley will definitely get some looks from other teams.  After seeing both in practice personally, I knew it would be a tough call for Ted Thompson to make.  This remains the deepest position for the Packers and they go with six instead of five to enable McCarthy to use even more multiple packages.

Tight End -4: Finley, Crabtree, Quarless, Williams

Speaking of tough decisions, it was obvious the Packers were not going to hang onto five tight ends to start the season.  Finley was the only lock and the other spots were up for grabs.  Crabtree has proven his worth in blocking and on special teams and Quarless showed flashes in the passing game last year.  The final spot then comes down to DJ Williams and Ryan Taylor.  Much was said about Williams after the draft and Thompson sticks to his initial convictions and Taylor is gone.

Offensive Line -9: Wells, Sitton, Clifton, Bulaga, Lang, Newhouse, Sherrod, Smith, McDonald

Besides the starting five, there is a serious lack of depth here.  Sherrod is a work in progress and Newhouse is still raw despite showing promise throughout camp and the preseason.  Dominguez is the odd man out despite his solid preseason.  The Packers may need to add a free agent here midseason should a catastrophic injury occur to a starter. Mark Tauscher anyone?

DEFENSE-26:

Defensive Line – 6: Raji, Pickett, Neal, Green, Wynn, Wilson

This order seemed set from the beginning of training camp.  Neal’s starting to earn a label as an injury risk, but there was really no one else is camp that threatened to steal a roster spot.

Linebacker – 8: Matthews, Hawk, Bishop, Walden, Francois, Smith, Zombo, So’oto

Zombo’s injury aside, this group basically remains intact from the end of last season save So’oto.    He barely beats out Cardia Jackson for a roster spot that was previously held by Nick Barnett.

Defensive Back – 9: Woodson, Williams, Shields, Bush, House, Collins, Burnett, Peprah, Underwood

All I’m going to say is Pat Lee blew it. His rough preseason did him in and he has had his chances.  He may be tough to replace on special teams, but with depth an issue at this position the Packers couldn’t afford for him to be a potential liability

Specialist -3: Crosby, Masthay, Goode

No challenges for any of the three in camp.

——————

Kris Burke is a sports writer covering the Green Bay Packers for AllGreenBayPackers.com and WTMJ in Milwaukee. He is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA) and his work has been linked to by sites such as National Football Post and CBSSports.com.

——————

  • snake

    No Brad Jones? I think Ryan Taylor makes it at TE/back-up FB over Quinn Johnson

  • Bubbaloo

    Kris, very good, but I pick Ryan Taylor over Quinn Johnson as maybe they can use him as a battering ram. And I think MAYBE Gurley over West. Gurley is 6′ 4″ with an 86″ wingspan, and you can’t teach that! You didn’t pick a P.S., but I think it will be easier to keep some of your cuts there than some of the other ‘potential’ rosters I’ve seen. Dominguez and Schlauderaff should clear waivers, as will Guy, and hopefully Ross, Gordy and maybe Shaky. Also, I see you’re saying goodbye to Brad Jones, and I wouldn’t bet on Underwood. Good Job!

    • Bubbaloo

      Kris, picture the “All Tall” team in the red zone,
      Finley, Quarless, Nelson, and Gurley, with Ryan Taylor coming out of the backfield! Just throw it UP there A-Rod!

  • Ed Schoenfeld

    I like your gamble with only 8 LB while keeping Zombo and So’oto. TT has done that kind of thing before.

    Agree that TT keeps Ryan Taylor, but its over Crabtree with only 4 TE.

    I think its Smith vs. MacDonald for the backup C/G; Schlauderaff stays on potential and one of the other two go.

    Underwood has played worse than Lee. Gordy actually had the lead for that job. But Lee has been getting better of late. This one can be decided tonight.

    All you guys have put together great, well-thought lists. Its really helped to clarify thinking, snd show problem TT faces. On some teams the 9th DB might not matter, but in GB it does. It is great to be a Packer fan in the 2010’s!