It's interesting while reading about the draft prospects this year to think back to this time LAST year and remember what everyone was saying about B.J. Raji and to remember how euphoric Packer fans were on draft day because of the visions they had of Raji blowing up offensive lines and spearing into backfields and being an overall hurricane of disruption.
Well, Raji's rookie year wasn't quite like that.
First, there was the holdout which came, of course, after Raji said there was no way he would hold out. Then there was the ankle injury in the last preseason game that severely limited him for the first part of the season. To my eye, Raji never really recovered from those two occurrences, though he seemed to finally show some burst around the Dallas game. But when Ryan Pickett went out at the end of the season and Raji got a chance to show what he could do at the position he was drafted to be th future of, nose tackle, he was less than a force to be reckoned with.
Now, if this is the proverbial 'rookie wall', lingering injuries or the product of being asked to do too much without the benefit of training camp reps, I don't know. What I do know is that Raji is getting paid a ton of money to be a monster in the middle of Capers' defense. Packer fans should expect Raji to benefit from a full offseason with Mark Lovat and crew and to show up to training camp ready to give the team the disruptive force it thought it was getting with the ninth overall pick in last years draft.
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