The Green Bay Packers travel to Kansas City for their final preseason game of the 2022 summer. This will be the last legitimate opportunity for those players who are either fighting for playing time or a roster spot to make their case.
Here is a closer look at one player from each position group to keep your eyes on as the game takes place.
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Quarterback: Jordan Love
Who else would it be?
Last week prior to the Saints game, I mentioned that with Jordan Love, we want to see progress from one game to the next–and we absolutely did.
Love was poised, even when under pressure, throwing in rhythm and with some zip. He delivered a few beautiful downfield passes as well as a few others into some tight windows.
We will, of course, want to see this from him again, as well as with some improved accuracy overall. There were still some easy passes in the flat that he shouldn’t be missing. But the key is continued progress.
Running back: Patrick Taylor
It’s fair to say that Tyler Goodson has been the most impressive back during the preseason, both as a pass-catcher and ball carrier. However, last week, Matt LaFleur mentioned that the third running back role would come down to special teams play, while Brian Gutekunst also discussed the importance of pass protection.
Oftentimes, players with more experience are better in these facets of the game, and Taylor is entering his third NFL season. We also saw Taylor pick up a blitzer last week, which allowed Love to complete a pass, and he also made a special teams tackle.
Wide receiver: Romeo Doubs
Doubs has been a playmaker for this Green Bay Packers offense since training camp began. He is able to win at three levels of the field and does an excellent job of creating space between himself and the cornerback.
But among the spectacular plays, there have also been a few drops, three to be exact. With how well Doubs has played, it’s going to be nearly impossible for the Packers’ offense to keep him off the field, but he is going to have to be more consistent.
Tight end: Tyler Davis
Davis has had a rough start to the preseason, to say the least. Between the dropped passes, one of which led to an interception, the fumble, missed blocks, and penalties, he has gone from a roster lock to someone on the bubble–or at least that’s what we thought.
On Monday, Matt LaFleur told reporters that the team still has confidence in Davis, especially on special teams. He then went out on Tuesday and had his best practice of the summer, according to Andy Herman. Now, let’s see that carry over to a game.
Offensive line: Caleb Jones
The Packers have never rostered more than nine offensive linemen on the initial 53-man under LaFleur, and right now, there are nine players locked into roster spots. However, with the statuses of David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins unknown for Week 1 and beyond, keeping a 10th offensive lineman is in play to help with the overall depth.
Jones has positioned himself well for that role, especially with Cole Van Lanen now in Jacksonville. Jones brings rare size to the position and has flown up the depth chart this summer, now routinely starting with the second team offense at both tackle positions. According to PFF, he has allowed just one pressure this preseason and has been very good as a run blocker.
Interior defensive line: Devonte Wyatt
It was a quiet first game for Devonte Wyatt, who logged one tackle and no pressure. As should have been expected, there was an adjustment period, but his burst and ability to get out of his stance were evident. Just like with Jordan Love, we want to see progression with Wyatt from Week 2 to Week 3. As of now, Wyatt appears to be the fifth man in this rotation.
Edge rusher: Tipa Galeai
It certainly feels like Jonathan Garvin and Kingsley Enagbare have two of the roster spots locked up, leaving one available. Kobe Jones has really come on strong as of late, both on defense and special teams.
But let’s not forget about Tipa Galeai, who has been on the starting edge rusher unit in each preseason game and a core special teams player in several phases. He’s also been very efficient with four pressures in 13 pass rush snaps, not to mention that he’s played just 31 total snaps – although he did leave early against San Francisco with an injury – to Jones’ 64.
However, even if Galeai played an additional 12 snaps as he did in Week 2, there would still be a discrepancy in snap counts. This may tell us that the Packers are comfortable with him being on the team and don’t need an extended look.
Linebacker: Ray Wilborn and Ty Summers
The Green Bay Packers may not even keep a fifth linebacker, but if they do, it will come down to one of these two players. As LaFleur said on Tuesday, “It’s a very tight battle. Hopefully, over the next two days, it helps clarify itself to make those tough decisions.”
While naturally, our attention will be on how these two perform on defense, it will likely be special teams play that determines whether one of them will stick around. As of now, Wilborn and Summers are the top two players on the team in special teams snaps.
Cornerback: Kiondre Thomas
For much of the summer, Rico Gafford has seemed to be locked into that sixth cornerback role, but it’s been difficult to ignore the play of Kiondre Thomas. In two games, Thomas has allowed just one completion on six targets; he’s been active against the run and used in a variety of roles on special teams.
Safety: Micah Abernathy
With Vernon Scott waived and Dallin Leavitt out injured, there is a path for Micah Abernathy to be on this 53-man roster this season. He is also coming off an impressive outing, where he recorded an interception, a tackle in the backfield, and he played on 17 special teams snaps.
Special teams: Jack Coco
Jack Coco has appeared to be very steady on both field goals and punt attempts in the two preseason games. I’m not sure he’s out of the woods yet and locked up a roster spot, but another strong performance, and he very well could be on his way.
There may not be another long-snapper on the roster, but as Gutekunst told us a few weeks ago, Coco is competing against long-snappers on teams as well as any free agents. The Packers have already had two long-snappers in for workouts this summer.