The Packers sit atop the NFL’s best teams after four games, and an early bye week seems to be a roadblock for a runaway train. However, the Packers, as usual, are dealing with a litany of injuries and the bye week provides a wonderful opportunity to get healthy.
With the promising rookie TE Josiah Deguara tearing his ACL and former CFL standout Reggie Begelton being waived from the 53-man roster (later signed to the practice squad), the Packers will have at least three spots to fill before week six in Tampa.
Rookie LB Kamal Martin’s strong camp had him projected as a week one starter before suffering a left knee injury that required surgery, landing him on IR.
As reported by ESPN’s Rob Demovsky, Martin would not be available for at least six weeks. Martin had surgery on Tuesday, September 1st, making the six-week mark Tuesday, October 12th (right in the middle of the Packers bye). Which would make Martin eligible to fill one of the vacant roster spots.
Obviously, with a young player already with past knee injuries, the main goal is for Martin to be 100% before attempting to make his NFL debut. But, 22-year-old’s ligaments tend to heal a little faster than those of a veteran. If Martin is in fact healthy when he becomes available, the once ugly duckling of the Packers defense (ILB), could become stacked with young talent.
Undrafted, fellow rookie Krys Barnes has been phenomenal, showing flashes of athleticism in the passing game that Packer fans have not seen for a long time, if ever. Martin was far outplaying Barnes all camp before his injury. If Martin is able to regain that form coming back from injury, Barnes and Martin may be Packers’ future LB core.
This is a lot of ‘If’s’, but during bye week, one’s mind likes to wander.
Another big ‘If’ guy is third-year WR Equanimeous St. Brown, who is also eligible to come off of IR during the bye week and fill a roster spot.
St. Brown has not played since 2018 due to numerous lower body injuries. The once explosive Notre Dame product, with have a ton to prove if he is ever elevated to the 53-man roster. But, with Allen Lazard on IR as well, St. Brown could have an ample opportunity to show his abilities.
Barring any setbacks, it will be a welcome sight for Packer fans to see Davante Adams (hamstring) and Kenny Clark (groin), who have been game-time decisions the past few weeks, back in action after the bye week.
Hopefully Rashan Gary (ankle) and Marcedes Lewis (knee), who also missed week four after promising starts to 2020, are healthy after the bye as well.
The Packers have been extremely cautious with early injuries in 2020, but with the likes of Tom Brady and Deshaun Watson looming on the horizon, it will be extremely important to be as healthy as possible.——————
Kirien is a big fan of the Packers, Beer, and Battlestar Galactica. You can follow him on twitter at @KirienSprecher.