The Green Bay Packers took the field on Saturday for their fourth training camp practice of the 2022 season. I was able to attend, so here are some of my key comments and takeaways:
Matt LaFleur’s pre-practice press conference
– Aaron Jones was returning kicks on Friday, but as would LaFleur tell the reporters, it’s “just an emergency.” Jones, along with D’Vondre Campbell, has also sat in on special teams meetings.
take away: After the playoff loss to San Francisco, LaFleur noted that the Packers would focus on making more use of starters on special teams. Rich Bisaccia would make similar remarks this season, noting that at the end of Ronde Barber’s career, he was still a main special team player. I’m confident we’ll see more significant contributors to special teams than in years past, especially on blocky units, but for players like Jones, Campbell and Adrian Amos — who have all delegated special teams this summer — mine. Guess they’re going to be drawn to it just in case, but won’t start as a favorite.
– Lafleur on edge rusher Randy Ramsey ryan wood: “He’s one of the guys who’s going to be in the contest. Right now, it’s pretty clear who 1 and 2 are, but for 3 to 5, it’s anyone’s guess.”
take away: Ramsey suffered an ankle injury last summer that sidelined him throughout the season. Earlier this offseason, Brian Gutkunst would say that the team was “excited” to have Ramsey back in the mix. In addition to competing for play time on defence, he was also fourth in the special teams snaps in 2020 per PFF.
– as Matt Schneideman Take note, the Packers will be bringing Sammy Watkins back into the mix. He was practicing on his own today and will rejoin team practice next week.
Overview and Notes from Practice
David Bakhtiyari was working with the rehab group, which happened for the first time during the training camp.
– Zach Tom was back on the left with the starters today and had an impressive performance. For a tackle, he lacks some length, but his athleticism is evident on the edge. According to PFF, he ended his Wake Forest career with 1,474 snaps on the left tackle, making just four sacks and 23 pressures in that two-year period.
Other starts along the offensive line were John Runyon, Josh Myers, Royce Newman and Yosh Nijman from left to right. With versatility is the hallmark of this offensive line unit, as Matt LaFleur said earlier this week, things will be “fluid” as players are swung around in search of the best five.
– The second team offensive line was made up of Tom – who was getting more reps – Michael Manet, Jake Hanson, Sean Ryan and Cole Van Lennon. To my knowledge, we have yet to see Ryan taking pictures in tackle, where he spent most of his time at UCLA.
– Had as many snaps as a five-tech with Kenny Clarke, with a deep internal defensive line rotation. Bringing Clark to the edge and space is always a good thing as it will mean fewer double-team and more face-to-face opportunities.
– Romeo Dobbs continues to play, including a downfield pass from Jordan Love where he beat his man and another into traffic. Dobbs was playing with guys, two and three on Saturday and was also the first return man on the punt. Nevada had doubts averaging 12 yards per return on 37 attempts with a touchdown.
– The emphasis was on running the ball today, and the defense was well prepared, blowing the ball up and filling the gap. The defensive front also generated a lot of “pressure”.
– The secondary was great too – sticky in coverage. Rodgers and Love rarely had the opportunity to push the ball down the aisle and at times had to go for their second and third reads before finding the target. Overall, the defense won the day – which shouldn’t come as a surprise. Even Rodgers noted that it could have been some long days during his final appearance on the Pat McAfee Show:
“It can be a long training camp for the offense. I love the way our defense is looking and playing, and just on paper, it looks like they are going to be pretty formidable,” Rodgers he said The Pat McAfee Show, “So there could be some growing pains to the offense, which would be great for us, taking our knots from time to time and helping us better cope with such a good defense.”
– Jack Coco was a long-time player with the first team field goals unit. In addition to Dobbs returning punt, we also saw Amari Rodgers and Ish Hyman return.
– La Darius Hamilton and Tipa Gale were once again the other team’s edge rushers, with Galle putting together some really good pass rush reps where he used his pace. After Gary and Smith, third to fifth on this roster at this position is wide open, but what we do know is that the Packers need more impact plays from rotational players in 2022 than they received in 2021. Is.
– Tight end Tyler Davies, who’s been campaigning a lot around, is holding himself pretty much as a blocker today. While that was a small sample size, last season, he was ranked 17th in all tight ends in the PFF’s run-blocking grade.
– There were several plays where Aaron Jones was lined up widely. When discussing passing game and receiver questions, we can’t forget about Jones, who has been second on the team in receptions for three consecutive seasons.
On the few occasions when Jones parted ways, AJ Dillon was in the backfield. According to Sharp Football, between 2020 and 2021, the Packers went only 2% of the time using two running back sets 16% of the time. This is a very small sample size, but as Pete Dougherty would write after the Packers’ late-season victory over Minnesota, backfield had seven plays in that game with both Jones and Dillon, and the offense averaged 7.4 yards per game. .
– Ration Gary was incredibly impressive. Whether speed or power, he stayed in the backfield, often matched against Nijman. Also, this was another exercise where neither Rodgers nor Love tested Jair Alexander.
– Cornerbacks Rico Gafford and Kabian Anto also had a very good day, with Gafford matching a three pass breakup and Anto two. Gafford is a recent convert from wide receiver and has 4.22 speed – which could make him a valuable member of a special team unit as a gunner or return man. He also played under Rich Bisaccia in Las Vegas. Anto, meanwhile, really shone last summer, but the only area he struggled with was tackle.
– Juwan Winfrey, Shemar Jean-Charles, Kingsley Engabare, and Dalin Levitt all had reps starting today. Winfrey is fighting for a roster spot that could hinge on the Packers placing seventh receivers. Jean-Charles may play some time in slots based on matchups this season, while Levitt brings special teams experience from his time under Bisaccia in Las Vegas, trying to play a rotational role on Anagbare Pass Rush Down .
– In addition to struggling to move the ball, it was a muddy day for the offense which also saw a pair of fumbles and two false starts.
— In a previous preseason, LaFleur mentioned that he wanted to see Jordan Love “rip it off.” He had a few instances today where he made good, decisive reading and got the ball out early and on target. Hopefully, this means that their confidence in the system is growing.
– The opening defense took some reps in the form of a field goal block team. Perhaps it’s a way to cross-train each player in a specific position—just in case they’re needed at some point this season.
The story originally appeared on Packers Wire