With the NFL season complete, there is a slight lull in the football world. The Combine isn’t for another couple of weeks, and the Draft a few months. But for the Packers, there is still a lot of work to be done before then. There’s free agency questions, individual progression for players, and even retirements and cuts. We have already seen them in the cases of Sam Shields and James Starks.
But instead of focusing on that, I would like to take some time to focus on the guys on the roster, including those who are upcoming free agents, and make a single goal for them. That’s why this is titled the way it is. Each player has something to achieve in 2017, whether it is with the Packers or another team. I covered the offense earlier, and now it’s time for the defense.
[Disclaimer: With the offense, I combined satirical and serious. With the defense, this will all be satirical with some semblances of truth.]
Dean Lowry has the goal of making sure that people don’t forget that Northwestern can actually produce good football players, not just Fortune 500 CEOs.
Datone Jones is out to prove in 2017 that just because he didn’t wrap up a quarterback, he can at least get there.
Kenny Clark wants to stop being carded in the cafeteria line.
Mike Daniels wants 2017 to be the year where he actually makes an offensive lineman actually pee himself with intimidation.
Letroy Guion wants 2017 to be the year where he finds out that there is multi-colored eye black.
Brian Price just wants to be on the active roster.
Christian Ringo wants to be known as more than just a poor man’s Mike Daniels.
Jayrone Elliott wants to become the first guy who can get a sack on special teams.
Kyler Fackrell has the goal of being the best #51 in Green Bay since Brady Poppinga
Reggie Gilbert wants to avoid the plague of the UDFA training camp stud/year two flame out (See: So’oto, Vic and Moses, Dezmon)
Blake Martinez has 2017 pegged as the year where instead of wearing the green dot on his helmet, just gets the communication system implanted into his brain.
Derrick Matthews has the goal of just making it to training camp.
Clay Matthews wants to prove that he is more Thor than Noah Syndegaard.
Julius Peppers, now that his football career is winding down, wants to give basketball another try and sign with the Bucks D-League team.
Nick Perry wants 2017 to be the year where every single celebration he has is modeled after a super villain.
Jake Ryan wants to step out of the shadow of being the second coming of AJ Hawk.
Joe Thomas wants to stop being overshadowed by his dad, the 58-year-old college player.
Jordan Tripp wants to take 2017 to prove that Montana isn’t actually a myth and actually is a place that exists with people.
LaDarius Gunter wants 2017 to get here quicker so he can stop having nightmares about covering Odell Beckham, Dez Bryant, and Julio Jones in consecutive games.
Josh Hawkins has the goal of taking over the mantle from Sam Shields as the UDFA who can absolutely fly but needs a lot of work.
Damarious Randall knows that 2017 training camp can’t come quick enough and wants to get his groove back.
Quinten Rollins wants to have a monster year to shut people up about Casey Hayward.
Herb Waters has 2017 pegged as the year where he becomes the new, improved model of Demetri Goodson.
Micah Hyde wants to officially change his middle name to “Swiss Army Knife” and has Jon Gruden saying “He’s just a football player” as his ringtone.
Makinton Dorleant wants to stop injuring his knee and show that Northern Iowa is more than just Kurt Warner and Basketball.
Demetri Goodson just wants to be able to be healthy for life after football.
Kentrell Brice wants 2017 to be the year where he cleanly hits a receiver and starts dropping those stars you used to put on your ceiling as a kid around the guy.
Morgan Burnett hopes 2017 is the year where he finally stops being overshadowed by the younger guys who were drafted with a lot of fanfare.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix has 2017 in mind as the year where he becomes the best Alabama defensive pick of the past decade.
Marwin Evans hopes that by the end of 2017 he is known as more than just the guy from Milwaukee who made the Packers roster.
Jermaine Whitehead is focused on not getting cut for a mistake on special teams.
[Again, this is meant to be satirical, with little nuggets of truth in them. Please don’t go nuts in the comments thinking I don’t know anything about the team.]——————
Mike Wendlandt is originally from Iola, Wisconsin and graduated from Drake University in 2015 with a degree in History. With a significant journalism background both in writing and broadcasting, Mike can be heard as the play-by-play voice of Central Wisconsin High School sports on WDUX FM 92.7 and on Twitter @MikeWendlandt.
Mike Wendlandt is a writer covering the Green Bay Packers for PackersTalk.com.