On October 24th, the Green Bay Packers made several transactions. They placed Darnell Savage Jr. and Eric Stokes on IR, signed Corey Ballentine to the active roster, picked up corner back Zyon Gilbert for the practice squad, and signed Robert Rochell to the Packers active roster off of the Panthers practice squad.
The move to sign Robert Rochell to the active roster at the time seemed inconsequential. I mean, at the time, the Packers still had Jaire Alexander, Rasul Douglas, and Keisean Nixon at corner. Additionally, many of us felt disappointed upon learning about the Eric Stokes and Darnell Savage news. It was an easy-to-miss transaction, and now, all of sudden, it is more than just an inconsequential move. It is very much consequential. With Jaire’s shoulder injury and Rasul Douglas playing for the Bills, Robert Rochell is going to have important playing time.
So, who is Robert Rochell?
Robert Rochell – College and Draft Process
After redshirting in his freshman year, Rochell actively played for five years at Central Arkansas. In his career at Central Arkansas he had 104 tackles, 28 pass-breakups, three forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, and ten interceptions. In his final season at Central Arkansas, despite the pandemic-related adjustments that led to a spring schedule, he played in seven out of the nine scheduled games.
During the draft process, NFL analyst Lance Zierlein said this about Robert Rochell:
“A freakish athlete with outstanding size, length and explosiveness… He typically works as a press-man corner but has all the tools necessary to play in a variety of coverages, including Cover 3, where he has displayed an ability to excel with his range and ball skills… He attacks throws like the former wideout he is and could become successful at baiting quarterbacks into throws they shouldn’t make.”
Rochell was eventually drafted in the later portion of the fourth round of the 2021 NFL Draft. After being drafted, Charles Davis compared him to Marcus Peters with regards to taking “calculated risks” to get interceptions.
The Rams drafted Rochell, and he contributed to the team for two seasons. His first season he played extremely well and most thought he would make a huge leap in his second season. That did not happen. With the Rams, he did not get a ton of playing time in 2022, but did in 2021. In his career, Rochell has 19 total tackles, a fumble recovery, four pass-breakups, and one interception.
Rochell didn’t secure a spot on the final roster for the Rams as they approached the 2023 season, leading to his release on August 30th. The following day, the Seattle Seahawks signed him to their practice squad, but he was subsequently released. He then signed to the Panthers practice squad. On October 24th, the Packers added Rochell to their active roster after signing him off the Panthers’ practice squad.
Robert Rochell has a ton of athletic ability. That is apparent if one were to watch his college highlights of some of his interceptions. It just seems like he needs a change of scenery and to play. He now has that opportunity with the Green Bay Packers.
Let’s see if he can make the most of it.——————
Damon is a diehard, fully-immersed cheesehead who currently lives in southern Missouri. He teaches at a local high school and has a family YouTube channel about all things Packers. You can follow him on twitter at @packersfamily and on YouTube at The Packers Family.