Packers 2012 Training Camp Depth Chart: Week 1

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Jarrett Bush
Jarrett Bush holds a starting cornerback position though the first week of camp.

As the Green Bay Packers Training Camp unfolds, I am going to do my best to track the players along the depth chart. While things will certainly change over the course of the preseason, this gives us an idea of how the coaches are valuing the players.

Please note that this is not a projection, but rather a snapshot ranking based on observations of training camp practices. Those players seen on the first team units are obviously in the running for starting jobs, while those on second team units are still working their way up the ladder. And as we should all know by now, special teams roles will continue to play a part in how each player is valued.

Notes are provided after each position to help you understand why players were ranked as they are. Most of my information comes from the beat writers who have been watching practice, using their Twitter feeds and articles as references. In deeper positions, the absolute ranking among bottom players should be taken more as a grouping than a specific ranking this early in camp. Enjoy!

Quarterback
Rodgers, Aaron
Harrell, Graham
Coleman, B.J.

  • Nothing too shocking here.

Running Back
Starks, James
Green, Alex
Saine, Brandon
Tyler, Marc
Bennett, Du’ane

  • Green seems to be starting strong despite his injury recovery.
  • Hard to differentiate between Tyler and Bennett at this point in time without watching practice.

Fullback
* Kuhn, John
Cooper, Nic
Hoese, Jon

  • Haven’t heard a lot about Hoese or Cooper, except that Cooper looks to be an underrated sleeper. Hard to think either will unseat Kuhn as starter.

Tight End
Finley, Jermichael
* Quarless, Andrew
Crabtree, Tom
Taylor, Ryan
Williams, D.J.
Lair, Eric
Bostick, Brandon

  • Taylor has shown better blocking skills and is a big hitter on special teams. This gives him a slight edge over Williams, who has flashed more as a receiver.
  • Lair and Bostick are hard to distinguish right now, though Bostick has missed some time with a finger injury.

Wide Receiver
Jennings, Greg
Nelson, Jordy
Cobb, Randall
Driver, Donald
Jones, James
Gurley, Tori
Borel, Diondre
Moss, Dale
Smithson, Shaky
Boykin, Jarrett
Curenski, Gilleylen

  • Cobb, Nelson, Borel, and Smithson have all had work on returning kicks.
  • Smithson was on the injury report recently with a chest bruise.
  • It will be tough for the bottom tier to crack the top five without a particularly amazing preseason.

Center
Saturday, Jeff
Dietrich-Smith, Evan
Sampson, Genus
Draheim, Tommie

  • Haven’t heard anything at all regarding Sampson or Draheim. EDS is definitely the top backup for center right now.

Guard
Sitton, Josh
Lang, T.J.
Dietrich-Smith, Evan
Dominguez, Ray
Barclay, Don
Van Roten, Greg
* Brooks, Jaymes

  • The No. 2 OL during Thursday’s practice had Dominguez and Barclay as guards (right and left respectively) with EDS at center.
  • Last season indicates EDS gets the first nod at guard should Sitton or Lang go down. His versatility in the middle of the line is what McCarthy likes in his backup OL.

Tackle
Bulaga, Bryan
Newhouse, Marshall
* Sherrod, Derek
Datko, Andrew
Taylor, Herb
Allard, Shea
McCabe, Mike

  • At the very least, Datko and Taylor both served as tackle back-ups during Thursday and Friday’s practices. Datko was seen on first team FG protection unit.
  • McCabe went down with a hip injury during 1-on-1 drills Saturday.

Defensive Tackle
Pickett, Ryan
Raji, B.J.
Daniels, Mike
Muir, Daniel
* Jones, Johnny

  • The coaches really seem to like Daniels. He and Worthy “bring juice” to practice. (No, not the Johnny Jolly kind.)
  • Muir was spotted on the KOR unit during Friday’s practice.

Defensive End
Raji, B.J.
Wilson, C.J.
Worthy, Jerel
Wynn, Jarius
Guy, Lawrence
Merling, Phillip
+ Neal, Mike
+ Hargrove, Anthony

  • Hard to place Neal and Hargrove right now. Both will serve suspensions, and Hargrove has been missing significant practice time for personal reasons.
  • Wilson started out on the base defense with Raji and Pickett, though Worthy is definitely nipping at his heels.
  • Wynn, Guy, and Merling should start showing their respective value as training camp progresses and could move up or down quickly.

Inside Linebacker
Hawk, A.J.
* Bishop, Desmond
Smith, D.J.
Francois, Robert
Manning, Terrell
Lattimore, Jamari
Jones, Brad

  • With Bishop out, Smith has been taking the first team reps and is the lone ILB on dime packages.
  • Francois was calling plays in the huddle with the second team.
  • Lattimore and Manning have been seen working the inside together.
  • Though Jones is on here, he hasn’t been seen as an ILB since OTAs.

Outside Linebacker
Matthews, Clay
Perry, Nick
Jones, Brad
So’oto, Vic
Walden, Erik
Moses, Dezman
* Zombo, Frank

  • Brad Jones was seen working at ROLB behind Matthews and ahead of Moses.
  • Walden and Moses were spotted as OLBs in second team nickel package.
  • So’oto, Walden, and Moses will probably switch rankings as camp progresses.

Cornerback
Williams, Tramon
Bush, Jarrett
Woodson, Charles
Hayward, Casey
House, Davon
Shield, Sam
Ross, Brandian
Merrill, Otis
Turner, Dion

  • Woodson probably won’t be playing cornerback in the base package, which essentially puts him third in the ranking. He’ll primarily play the slot in nickel packages.
  • Tramon and Bush have been the de facto starting duo since camp started.
  • Before Saturday’s practice, Shields might have been ranked higher. His value dropped quickly, though, when House replaced him in the dime package.
  • Merrill was seen working on punt returns.

Safety
Burnett, Morgan
Woodson, Charles
Jennings, M.D.
Levine, Anthony
McMillian, Jerron
Richardson, Sean
Pellerin, Micah

  • Burnett and Woodson are pairing up so far in the base 3-4 package. In nickel packages, Jennings has been coming in to replace Woodson, who moves to cornerback.
  • Levine got some work with the No. 1 defense on Friday in place of Jennings.
  • Richardson could be another sleeper. Was seen working with the first string punt team on Thursday.

* Physically Unable to Perform (PUP)
+ Will Serve Suspensions to Start Season

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Chad Toporski, a Wisconsin native and current Pittsburgh resident, is a writer for AllGreenBayPackers.com. You can follow Chad on twitter at @ChadToporski

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  • BubbaOne

    I read Gurley was on the #1 KOR team. It’s early but still a good sign if you’re a Gurley-Man.

    I was right about Peprah not making the team though since S’s are at a premium TT could wait and get a pick for him. Probably would have if TC reps weren’t at a premium.

    Since I was right about Peprah I’ll renew another prediction…Kuhn doesn’t make the team ( I said this before he was put on PUP) and it’s very possible depending on how Coop and Hoese play in camp that they don’t carry a FB at all.

    • Wagszilla

      Kuhn’s a lock.

      Cult favorite, special teams utility, and solid in pass protect and goal line situations.

      • David

        He’s a lock until he’s un-keepable. His pass blocking alone would keep him on the team because keeping Rodgers upright is job #1 for FB’s on this team.

        If he’s injured… he will be cut.

        • Oppy

          If he’s injured, he’d most likely be IR’d, not cut.

          Just sayin’.

  • Wagszilla

    I’ve re-watched most of the 2011 season and besides the abysmal performance by the defense (well basically just the D-Line and Charlie Peprah), the one thing that stuck out to me was how terrible James Starks was.

    Pass protection still wasn’t great, he was awful on draws, and most of the time made bad reads on screens. This was when he caught the ball, as he often dropped it.

    I didn’t think I’d want Ryan Grant back but I find myself missing ol’ #25.

    Place your bets now gentlemen, Brandon Saine and Alex Green will be the workhorses of this run game once McCarthy swallows his pride and gives them the time they deserve.

    Although I think it’s possible that McCarthy keeps Cobb and Green in the clip until the playoffs. Unleash pure speed on unsuspecting defenses when the time is right.

  • http://yahoo.com Woodie

    Did you really need to make the Johnny Jolly reference? No. Be more professional huh?