Packers: Top Five Questions of Preseason Week 1

Dec 18, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews (52) looks on prior to the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Are the Packers healthy?

Perennially, this is the most important question in nearly every camp. The Packers have fared well so far. 24-year-old CB Herb Waters injured his shoulder, meaning he will be out for the entire year. Waters also missed all of the last year due to an injury and was waived by the Packers. Other notable injuries make a very short list, rookie DT Montravius Adams needed surgery on a stress fracture suffered in his foot and won’t be able to return for an expected 6-8 weeks. Fellow rookie, LB Vince Biegel, had a very similar surgery for a broken foot in early May and is expected to return in a few weeks. CB Demetri Goodson is still recovering from a torn ACL suffered midseason last year and does not have a timetable for return.


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Relative to losing Jordy Nelson in 2015, this has been a safe preseason for the Packers.

Is Ty the guy?

Going into training camp, it was expected to be Ty Montgomery taking the majority of snaps at running back. Although this is still the case, rookie Jamaal Williams is pushing to steal snaps away from Ty. Coach Mike McCarthy said the starter will be most influenced by the back’s ability to protect Aaron Rodgers on passing plays. Williams has proven to be a very capable blocker and also has shown value in running and catching from the backfield. Expect a bit of a committee to form in the Packers’ backfield this season.

Who will be the starting corners?

Pass defense was an obvious weak spot for the Packers last year. They addressed the void in the offseason by drafting CB Kevin King and S Josh Jones while picking up former Packer Davon House in Free Agency. Adding these new playmakers and having a healthy Damarious Randall and Quinten Rollins makes for an interesting situation for a unit looking to have a big bounce-back year. It is unknown who will be starting the first week of preseason at corner, but Quinten Rollins is reportedly having a strong camp along with Davon House who has been battling against WR Davante Adams often. Look for those two to take the field at the beginning of the game. The starting jobs for the season will be largely determined by how they play in the four preseason games, with opportunities for Rollins, House, King, and Randall to all get the starting job.

How will the O-line fare without TJ Lang?

Giving Aaron Rodgers time in the pocket and keeping him off the ground is vital to the success of the season and the longevity of his career. He recently stated he wants to play until he is 40. Without Pro-Bowler TJ Lang at Guard, the Packers could have a big hole for opposing defenders to get at Rodgers. GM Ted Thompson signed veteran guard Jahri Evans, who has been stonewalling defensive lineman in camp. Confidence has also been expressed in long-time Packer Don Barclay. Aaron will have five walls in front of him this season and should stay clean and healthy this season.

Who is the person to watch in Week 1?

Losing Datone Jones and Mike Pennel to Free Agency, Letroy Guion to suspension, and rookie Montravius Adams to a foot injury leaves a lot of holes in the Packers’ defensive line. Second-year player, Kenny Clark, will be key in having a strong defense. He made impacts his rookie year, showing excellent awareness of the offensive game plan. He reads screens and denies reverses. His football intelligence further aids the raw power he has shown. The potential for Clark is undeniable and incredibly important to the success of the Packers. Look for Clark to be making plays with his mind and body in Week 1 and throughout the season.

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  • Tito

    Exciting to finally have a pretty healthy team coming out of camp – let’s hope they can stay that way (KNOCK ON ALL OF THE WOOD).

    Heard Rodgers is taking a liking to Williams in pass pro… How many RBs are the packers expected to keep?