In the 2022 NFL Draft, the Green Bay Packers walked away with 11 new members of the Green and Gold. Usually, with that high of a number of draft picks, it’s unlikely that everyone catches on with the team that selected them come September. Well, here we are on the first day of September, with the entire Packers’ draft class officially making the initial 53-man roster.
Packers’ General Manager Brian Gutekunst has been criticized in the past for his draft tendencies. So far in 2022, those discussions can be laid to rest. Gutekunst kicked off the Packers’ draft by selecting two National Champion Bulldogs in linebacker Quay Walker and defensive lineman Devonte Wyatt. Walker has already solidified himself as a starter playing alongside De’Vondre Campbell. Wyatt had a quiet start to camp this off-season but easily locked in his spot on the roster toward the end of the summer.
Gutekunst opted to bolster the wide receiver room with two of his next three selections by trading up for Christian Watson in the second round and selecting Romeo Doubs late in the fourth round. Doubs has been a training camp darling all summer long and should see his name called very early into the season. Watson, however, worked with the rehab group for the majority of training camp but has since returned and flashed his potential as of late.
Sean Rhyan, Zach Tom, and Rasheed Walker all look like future starters upfront on the offensive line in Green Bay this summer. Especially Tom, who recorded the second highest pass block grade among all offensive tackles from Preseason Week 3, according to Pro Football Focus. Walker’s spot on the roster came after a fierce battle with undrafted free agent Caleb Jones which came down to the end. Ultimately, Walker’s performance in the final preseason gave him the nod.
Fifth-round outside linebacker Kingsley Enagbare has continued to show improvement week after week. Going into Week 1 against the Minnesota Vikings, don’t be surprised if you see him rotate in as the Packers’ third pass rusher. Enagbare also had some tough competition to win his spot on the roster, but his film and stats during the preseason speak for themselves.
Finally, we have the remaining three seventh-round picks left to discuss. Let’s begin with the final pick of the Packers’ draft, wide receiver Samori Toure. Toure’s spot on the initial 53-man roster came as a surprise to some after beating out fellow wide receiver Juwann Winfree for the last spot at the position. Gutekunst called the decision a “tough call” but in the end, Toure’s “ability in the slot, his ability to separate and get open” finalized his decision.
Safety Tariq Carpenter was an easy choice to make the roster given the current depth and health at the position. The last draft pick to make the 53-man roster left to discuss was defensive tackle, Jonathan Ford. The bigger-bodied Ford was able to beat out Chris Slayton and Jack Heflin, both of whom seemed to be more polished at the position. At the end of the day, Gutekunst saw his vision and stuck with it.
With the initial 53-man roster now set and with the Packers’ practice squad starting to get finalized, it’s time to turn our focus toward September 11 when Week 1 rolls around against the Minnesota Vikings.——————
Kole Noble is a lifelong Packers fan currently living in North Carolina and is a huge NFL Draft nut. You can follow him on twitter at @SlawSportsShow.