Here’s the Green Bay Packers initial roster after making 22 cuts on Saturday to get down to the NFL mandated 53 -player limit.
Remember that the makeup of the roster is subject to change if the Packers were to make any waiver claims, trades or sign any free agents.
Aaron Rodgers, B.J. Coleman
For the time being, Coleman will back up Aaron Rodgers, although that may not necessarily prevent the Packers from going out and acquiring another quarterback. The Packers do need a quarterback who knows the offense, however, in case anything were to happen to Rodgers, and Coleman at least provides that.
Running Backs (4)
Eddie Lacy, John Kuhn, James Starks, Johnathan Franklin
After parting ways with Alex Green, it appears as if Starks will be Lacy’s running mate in the Packers backfield. The possibility still exists that the Packers could add Joe McKnight, but they’d have to cut a player to make room for him––and they wouldn’t necessarily have to cut a running back.
Wide Receiver (5)
Randall Cobb, Jordy Nelson, James Jones, Jarrett Boykin, Jeremy Ross
The Packers decided to keep Ross over rookies like Charles Johnson, Tyrone Walker and Myles White, although it’s a good bet the Packers will ask at least one or two young receivers to be on their practice squad. After cutting Green, it also looks like Ross is in line to be the Packers’ kick returner.
Tight End (4)
Jermichael Finley, Andrew Quarless, Ryan Taylor, Brandon Bostick
The Packers parted ways with D.J. Williams, who they had spent the previous two years developing, and Matthew Mulligan, the free-agent signing that was expected to be the run blocker. Quarless will have to become the run blocker the Packers need. Taylor will fill an H-back and special teams role. Bostick is a good receiving threat, but he needs to be more than just a one-trick pony if he’s going to be active on game days.
Offensive Line (8)
David Bakhtiari, Josh Sitton, Evan Dietrich-Smith, T.J. Lang, Don Barclay, Marshall Newhouse, Greg Van Roten, Lane Taylor
It looks like Van Roten will be the backup center and interior offensive lineman. It was perhaps surprising to see the Packers keep Taylor, but they won’t need his services unless another lineman is injured. They have the luxury of time to develop him.
Defensive Line (7)
Datone Jones, B.J. Raji, Ryan Pickett, C.J. Wilson, Mike Daniels, Johnny Jolly, Josh Boyd
For a team that uses only two defensive linemen on the field about 70 percent of the time, it was surprising to see the Packers keep seven defensive linemen, eight if you count Mike Neal. But among the biggest reasons they kept Boyd is because Raji, Pickett, Wilson, Jolly and Neal are all free agents at season’s end.
Outside Linebackers (5)
Clay Matthews, Nick Perry, Mike Neal, Andy Mulumba, Nate Palmer
After making the roster as an undrafted rookie and racking up four sacks in 2012, the Packers placed Dezman Moses on waivers. They must feel good about the two rookies they decided to keep over him––Mulumba and Palmer.
Inside Linebackers (5)
A.J. Hawk, Brad Jones, Robert Francois, Jamari Lattimore, Sam Barrington
The Packers waived Terrell Manning, one year after trading up in the fifth round to grab him. It may have been a case of just having too much depth at one position.
Tramon Williams, Sam Shields, Casey Hayward, Davon House, Micah Hyde, Jarrett Bush
No surprises here. Bush makes the roster on the strength of his special teams ability.
Morgan Burnett, M.D. Jennings, Jerron McMillian, Chris Banjo
Behind a strong preseason performance, Banjo made the roster. He’ll be needed if Burnett misses any time with a hamstring injury.
Special Teams (3)
Mason Crosby, Tim Masthay, Brett Goode
The Packers probably have some kickers on speed dial, but it’s Crosby’s job to lose for the time being.