In only 6 days from today, we will know which players will be a part of the 2021 Green Bay Packers. Prior to the start of the preseason, I gave my initial thoughts on the 53 man roster (link). The two preseason games have confirmed a lot of what I initially thought but there are still jobs to be won in the final week. Here is my final roster prediction of who will be on the roster on September 1st going into the final preseason game this Saturday.
On offense, I continued to work as I did in 1.0 under the assumption that left tackle David Bakhtiari will not be ready for the start of the season. However, I believe that the Packers will keep him on the initial roster so they can put him on IR, which they can activate him after three games instead of six if they put him on the regular season PUP. However, previously I kept 10 total offensive linemen to lessen his loss. In two weeks, I’ve changed my tune, keeping 9 linemen. Yosh Nijman has impressed me enough at LT that I feel that I don’t need the body there. I still keep 7 wide receivers, but shuffled the bottom of the room. With the loss of Will Redmond to injury this week, I kept Dominique Dafney at TE, who has been a special teams standout in camp.
Previous players in ()
(2) QBs: Aaron Rodgers, Jordan Love
(3) RB: Aaron Jones, AJ Dillion, Kylin Hill (cut: Patrick Taylor)
(7) WR: Davante Adams, Randall Cobb, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Allen Lazard, Amari Rodgers, Malik Taylor, Devin Funchess (cut: Juwann Winfree)
(4) TE: Robert Tonyan, Marcedes Lewis, Josiah Deguara, Dominique Dafney
(9) OL: Elton Jenkins, Jon Runyan Jr., Josh Myers, Ben Braden, Dennis Kelly, Royce Newman, Billy Turner, Cole Van Lanen, Yosh Nijman (cut: Lucas Patrick)
I made some tough choices here, mostly on the backend of the roster. My previous cut of Josh Jackson was close, as he was traded last week. At Inside Linebacker, Oren Burks is squarely on the bubble with one more preseason game. I’m leaning towards keeping him for special teams value and his flashes have been impressive. On the other hand, surprisingly Kamal Martin was cut yesterday as the team reduce their roster to 80. At Safety I continue to believe young safeties Henry Black, Vernon Scott and Christian Uphoff will all be a part of the team. I went heavy at Safety because of the special teams value I think that room provides so I also kept Innis Gaines. Finally at edge rusher, nobody has jumped out and claimed the last spot. This Saturday will be huge for Tipa Galeai, Jonathan Garvin and Chauncey Rivers to make their case that they deserve to be on the 53. At the moment, I kept Galeai, but could definitely see any of the 3.
(5) DL: Kenny Clary, Dean Lowry, TJ Sheldon, Jack Heflin, Kingsley Keke (cut: Tyler Lancaster)
(4) OLB: Za’Darius Smith, Rashan Gary, Preston Smith, Tipa Galeai (cut: Jonathan Garvin)
(4) ILB: De’vondre Campbell, Kris Barnes, Oren Burks, Ty Summers
(6) CB: Jaire Alexander, Kevin King, Eric Stokes, Shemar Jean-Charles, Chandon Sullivan, Kabion Ento
(6) S: Adrian Amos, Darnell Savage, Henry Black, Vernon Scott, Christian Uphoff, Innis Gaines
No surprises here. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if the Packers opening day long snapper is currently on another roster. JK Scott, while inconsistent has the leg talent that is just so challenging to cut.
(1) K: Mason Crosby
(1) P: JK Scott
(1) LS: Hunter Bradley
Suspended and Injured Reserve Lists: Jace Sternberger (Sus) David Bakhtiari (IR after cutdown)
Sternberger has been suspended for the first two weeks by the NFL, so he won’t count initially on the Packers roster. It makes zero sense to cut him now and still has high potential. Putting him here buys the Packers time. David is on injured reserve to complete his recovery from a late season ACL tear. In both my initial and final projection, I assume that the Packers will place him on IR after cutdown so they can bring him back after three weeks instead of six.
Practice Squad(16): Kurt Benkert, Isaac Yiadom, Isaiah Mcduffie, Dexter Williams, Jake Hanson, Jonathan Garvin, Carlo Kemp, Willington Previlon, Juwann Winfree, Patrick Taylor, Jacob Capra, Ray Wilborn, Chauncey Rivers
Large changes here, primarily due to injuries. Most of the players here need time to develop but could help fill roles later in the season. There are still a couple of slots the Packers can fill with players from other teams. I think it’s likely that potentially another defensive lineman or two could be added as well as another Offensive Lineman.
While there haven’t been many changes from my initial projection, I believe that this version of the roster is stronger. This is a team that will compete for a Super Bowl in 2021.
Jordan is a lifelong Packer fan who grew up in Idaho and now lives in Seattle, Washington. You can follow him on twitter at @jordantwolf.