Outside of defensive tackle Kenny Clark, who is in line to get his first large contract in his young, dominant career, the Green Bay Packers’ defense is in need of having big jumps in other members of their defensive line.
Montravius Adams, Kingsley Keke, Tyler Lancaster, and Dean Lowry all have held various roles and responsibilities on the defensive line for GB through their careers, and while each have displayed their talents in different capacities, they all have one element in common- they still need to make that next jump.
Treyvon Hester was added as a free agent not too long ago, and while his production for the Redskins, Eagles, and Raiders was not all that strong in terms of stat sheet numbers, he was a solid DL role player that could make one of Adams/Keke/Lancaster/Lowry expendable once training camp ends.
For Adams, recent legal trouble very much clouds his role on the D-Line, but he seems to be one of the few that have the most to prove. Coming out of Auburn, Adams was seen as a solid, powerful DL that has not been able to take that next jump.
The former Texas A&M Aggie Keke has offered a refreshing sense of production, albeit in a small sample size. He has been able to slide into a backup role along the line and help spell Clark and others, but his ability to show up in the non-stat sheet aspects gives him a little bit of an edge moving forward.
Lancaster is a big-bodied interior lineman that has had his share of big moments (forcing and recovering a McCoy fumble against KC) but also has been quite inconsistent in his play. While needing a solid #2 DT behind Clark, Lancaster has taken that role in stride and looks to have a solid role ahead for his future.
The final member on this list, Lowry, somewhat recently secured a questionable long-term contract without putting the ‘needed’ results onto the field to justify the deal. But his nose for the football and ability to just be a body in trenches doing the dirty work speaks to his workman-like mantra that has taken him from mid-round draft pick to solid journeyman that cashed in his first deal.
Clark is going to command a solid percentage of the next pay sheet for the team, and securing solid D-Line talent behind him on the cheap is going to be key in ensuring that this team can continue to build up their youthful, talented defense all while trying to develop more solid pieces alongside their stars of Clark, the Smith bros, and Jaire Alexander.뿓뿓뿓
Mike Johrendt has been an avid fan of the Packers ever since he can remember. He is now a writer at PackersTalk and you can follow him on Twitter at @MJohrendt23