In last year’s draft the Green Bay Packers used their second first round pick and selected Devonte Wyatt with the 28th pick. Wyatt was the second Georgia Bulldog defender that was taken by Green Bay in the first round after Quay Walker.
A lot of fans were excited for the selection of Wyatt as it seemed like a steal at the time. He finished the season with 15 tackles to go along with 1.5 sacks and 1 forced fumble. He was also in a rotation on the defensive line and didn’t necessarily play starter snaps.
It goes without saying that the Packers’ defensive line will be missing some key contributors from last season. Both Dean Lowry and Jarran Reed found new homes this offseason as they were key parts of the rotation on the Packers’ defensive line. Star defensive tackle Kenny Clark will need as much help as he can get this upcoming season.
With the departure of Lowry and Reed, it’s the perfect opportunity for Wyatt to make a second year leap. He will get a full offseason and preseason presumably taking first-team snaps working beside Clark. Wyatt has all the tools necessary to make an impact and he’ll have that chance this season.
He definitely showed he could make an impact after he flashed in the season finale against Detroit. He recorded 1 tackle, 1 sack, and 1 forced fumble. Even though it was late in the season, it was nice to see Wyatt have an impact in a meaningful game.
The current depth for Green Bay’s defensive line doesn’t seem ideal factoring in their experience. Other than Kenny Clark, no other player has recorded over 600 snaps played. This could cause concern due to the defensive line being one of the most heavily rotated positions.
Wyatt learned that last season after being a first round pick but often didn’t seem part of the game plan. He played under 25% of the team’s snaps on defense every game until weeks 16-18 where he played over 48% of the snaps in those three games.
It will only be Wyatt’s second season in the league but he must show he can be that guy alongside Clark. A breakout season would all but justify the Packers allowing two of their key lineman to sign with another team. Lots of eyes will be on #95 this upcoming season.——————
Javier Delgado is a lifelong Packers fan who is currently majoring in sports journalism at Arizona State University. He writes for PackersTalk.com and you can follow him on twitter at @javierrdelgadoo.