Packers Stout OL has Question Marks Entering 2021

The Green Bay Packers' offensive line unit was the best in football last season. However, looking ahead to 2021, there are some real question marks surrounding this unit.

By several metrics, the Green Bay Packers offensive line was the best in football last season. They ranked first in ESPN’s run-blocking and pass-blocking win rate metrics. And according to PFF, they gave up the fewest pressures and the second-fewest sacks.

What makes these numbers even more impressive is that they battled numerous injuries and movement along the offensive line all season long--yet they continued to play at a high level.

However, as we look ahead to 2021, with Corey Linsley now in Los Angeles and David Bakhtiari out for the start of the season — who knows for how long — there are some real question marks upfront—although, in fairness, I will mention that I had some concerns entering the 2020 season, particularly on the right side of the line but those ended up being unwarranted.

Let’s start with filling the void left at the center position now that Linsley is gone. Currently, the Green Bay Packers have three on the roster options to take his place: Elgton Jenkins, Lucas Patrick, and Jake Hanson.

Hanson is a former sixth round pick and someone who was a practice squad player in 2020. He also missed quite a bit of practice time after being placed on IR in October—so chances are he isn’t going to be ready to start.

Unless Green Bay lands a tackle in the draft who can start right away — I’ll get to that shortly — Jenkins will be one of the tackles at the start of next season, leaving Patrick as the center. While Patrick is no Linsley, I do think he will hold up just fine as the every day center. But with him at center and Jenkins at tackle, there are now two holes to fill at guard.

Although we didn’t see much of Jon Runyan Jr. last season, in that small sample size, he does appear up to the task of being an NFL starter, allowing no sacks and just two pressures in 81 pass-blocking snaps. However, at the other guard position, we have a whole lot of question marks.

Like Hanson at center, Simon Stepaniak is a relative unknown—at least to us outside of the organization. He too missed most of last year with an injury and is a former sixth-round pick, which again, makes me skeptical that he’s ready to be a starter this season.

Who knows, maybe he is, but odds are that he isn’t. Green Bay could also turn to Ben Braden who was primarily a practice squad player in 2020, but considering that he just finished his fourth NFL season and has only four total offensive snaps, that comes with some obvious risks.

At the tackle position without Bakhtiari, the Green Bay Packers are dangerously thin on depth. While I do believe that the Billy Turner and Elgton Jenkins combo will hold up in Bak’s absense, the only other tackle on the roster is Yosh Nijman. He has 14 career regular-season snaps at tackle and to us outside of the organization, we have no clue where he is at in his development. So relying on him heavily could be quite risky given his lack of experience and rawness that he still may possess.

An offensive line configuration made up of Turner and Jenkins at tackle, Patrick at center, and Runyan and Stepaniak at guard certainly isn’t one that’s going to dominate like last year’s group did, although collectively they could be okay—we hope. And one injury could put the Packers in a world of hurt with their overall lack of depth.

Fortunately for Green Bay, this is a deep offensive tackle class, and landing a Day 1 starter, or at the very least a capable backup who could step in when needed, would alleviate a lot of the concerns surrounding this unit.

With a Day 1 starter, Jenkins can move back to guard joining Patrick and Runyan along the interior while Turner stays at tackle. Stepaniak, Braden and Nijman remain backups, and if there is an injury at tackle, the Packers still have the option to move Jenkins outside before relying on the unproven Nijman.

If the draft pick isn’t ready to start immediately, there is at least added depth and flexibility. If Jenkins or Turner goes down, Green Bay has an early-round pick -- or at least I hope it's an early-round pick -- to lean on. Or if an interior player is injured, Jenkins can move back inside and the rookie tackle can take over outside.

Either of these alternatives makes me feel a lot better about the offensive line as a whole than what I currently do. And of course, getting Bakhtiari back will only help things further, but even if he wasn’t out injured, finding a swing tackle for 2021 and the future right tackle with Turner’s future beyond 2021 being unknown should have been high on the to-do list anyways.

Addressing tackle early on this draft will not only give the Green Bay Packers a potential starter and added depth at a premier position, but there will be a positive trickle-down effect to the interior offensive line as well.

Understandably so, cornerback has the attention of many this offseason—and I certainly get why. But tackle and the offensive line as a whole is either as big of a need or very close. As we saw in the NFC Championship Game and the Super Bowl, games are still won and lost in the trenches.

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Born and raised in Green Bay, WI and I still call it home. After my family, watching the Packers, sharing my opinions on the team through my writing and interacting with other fans is my greatest passion. You can find me on Twitter at @Paul_Bretl. 
 

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Comments (68)

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 06:24 am

As if i wrote this myself.

You nailed it Paul.

Ironically, last season i had those same concerns about the right side of the line. although neither were perfect last season, Turner improved last season and Wagner was a hair better than i expected.

The Bakhtiari injury is the obvious setback. But we can't underestimate the loss of Linsley. The Chargers wanted him for 1 reason, he's rock solid and he can help Justin Herbert get even better than he is already, helping him in his progression of combating various defenses. Linsley has seen it all, Herbert hasn't.
That was a smart signing by the Chargers.
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So we lost two players, they have to be replaced, which also means losing depth. Cornerback, O line, D-line seem to be our highest needs.
Ironically we still haven't found our #2 receiver, but as time goes by, we have new needs, which puts receiver at maybe 4th on the need list.

Who knows...maybe in the draft the Packers do something completely off the wall, outside the box....and draft for need.

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Turophile's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:40 am

Need is always a consideration in who is drafted........................as long as you remember is isn't the only factor in play.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 01:07 pm

Absolutely....we have to draft for the future also, like for when Rodgers is gone.
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Super Bowls can be won anytime.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:41 pm

PF4L April 2, 2021
Down the hall a segment of fans want to look at the shiny side of the penny.
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Where they endlessly point out the fact they we’re 26-6 the last two seasons, 13-3 the last 2 years.
That “they are successful”
That’s “not to bad”
Or….”That’s pretty damn good”
Or….”they can’t win the SB every year”
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Well great…lets get some balloons and some kool aid, hats and horns and have a “Hang a NFC North Banner party.
*************************
Those fans…a bit slow and simplistic on the uptake.
But when years go by…and Rodgers is gone, and no one expects the Packers to win anything, and the Packers don’t hold automatic expectations other than trying to make the playoffs.
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Those same fans, will then realize some years later. What some of us meant by having a HOF QB, a handful of Pro Bowlers and a small SB window.
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THEN…it will finally dawn on them, what that all actually meant and what a “win now” mode meant.

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:04 am

Maybe they will be masking by then?

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CoachDino's picture

April 02, 2021 at 06:18 pm

The packers have been in win now since Gutey drafted 4 High Dollar FA on the first day of FA in his first year as GM. Anyone that knows the NFL will tell you FAs are for immediate needs the draft is about future needs. Anyone w/o that mindset is going to fail as they would have no idea of the statistical data on draft picks supplying instant impact. Even less probability to do so on a good team. That's just the quantifiable facts.

I could go but its always the same thing. Silly theories with zero quantifiable information and expert analysis to back it. Sheep - They hear something, like how it sounds and follows it blindly.

On top of all that the packers had a team/roster more than good enough to win a SB. Much Like KC the OL injuries derailed them. AR didn't have a very good game, in part because of the constant pressure, Can't tell me if you have the best LT in the game instead of an Avg RG at LT it doesn't help him.

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mnbadger's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:18 am

Thank the author for admitting the same concerns were high on our list last year. What happened? Coaches coached. Players played. Everybody rose to the occasion. I also agree with pf4l, this is a great year to draft for need with most of the best young talent aligning with our needs. Can't wait. GPG

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 02, 2021 at 07:15 pm

Everybody rose to the occasion. I give credit to the coaches who got more out of Turner than I thought possible, and to Wagner who played well all year, but perhaps was just too banged up for the Conference Championship game.

But they were a game short.

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Lare's picture

April 02, 2021 at 06:36 am

"As we saw in the NFC Championship Game and the Super Bowl, games are still won and lost in the trenches."

The Packers have a history of finding legitimate OL starters in the draft. Bakhtiari, Linsley, Jenkins, Bulaga, and Tauscher were all starters as rookies. I would not be disappointed if they chose a starting OT at 29.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:06 am

+ Sitton, T. J. Lang, Clifton, Wells.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:37 pm

Yea man!!

Tretter was a TRUE versatile lineman

Not "versatile" in the way the Packers used to describe Don Barclay

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stockholder's picture

April 02, 2021 at 07:15 am

Who was the back up center last year? Wasn't it Patrick? Seems Patrick should start. Next: Turner was your Lt . Seems Turner will start there, until Bahk is ready. And if Taylor was considered. He would have been signed. So I would say Runyan is your RG. Seems we need a RT until Bahk comes back. A - RT can be drafted. A - Rt can be resigned- (Wagner.) A - Rt can be the guy next up. Regardless: everywhere you look; were OK. The Trench is too important on both sides of the ball. Everyone said this was a weak draft for DL. Yet the OL are dropping and the DL climbing. So you guys who want a CB drafted. Consider the money spent on offense. We have too much money wrapped up in this offense to neglect IT. If a cb is taken over a guy in the Trench. You lost on either side of the ball. And the BEST DL that could make a difference, will be gone per the Top. 62. We don't know what Gute will do. But there are some very good centers, that just might get that 92 pick. Even a RT. I hope Gute doesn't give it away knowing how important the TRENCH is.

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:02 am

I doubt Taylor would pass his physical at this point. That probably won’t happen till the summer, based on what I understand of his injury.

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:07 am

Taylor has seen his day. His knees are compromised, move on.

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HenryMills's picture

April 02, 2021 at 07:18 am

Great news!

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:17 am

"As we saw in the NFC Championship Game and the Super Bowl, games are still won and lost in the trenches."

As i saw in the NFCCG, games can also be lost in pass coverage.

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Since'61's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:10 pm

Or as we also saw in the NFCCG, games can be lost on a dropped "gimme" interception. Thanks, Since '61

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:25 pm

Or a fumble, or two more accurately, but one could argue an inexplicable use of the D in the first half, a mind numbingly dumb call to end the half, forgetting the existence of your physically imposing RB in the second half, an incredible drop on the end zone ( and others earlier) and a head coach who was schooled on game preparation, adjustment and play calling, as part of which, the OL were placed in the least helpful position.

Interceptions are never a gimme, a considerable amount of the other things should be. To exacerbate, many of them were repeats of the supposedly accepted mistakes from the first Tampa game. No, that game wasn’t lost by Redmond or by the O line alone.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 01:04 pm

Citing the pressure from the Bucs front 7 on Rodgers, he (the offense) had a pretty good showing. Clearly better than the Chiefs.
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We can piss and moan all day how we lost the game.
I prefer to look at the plays that really stand out, that gave up points.
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Top of my head...
1) King, mis-timed jump against Evans...BADLY, because he was (unaware) lost. (7 points)
2) Amos...Let Brate (blatantly) run free into the end zone behind him for easy TD. (7 points)
3) King, 40 yard pass to Miller. in his route he's looking at Brady for the first 30 yards, then turns his head the last 10 yards. Way too late, he was already beat, and didn't even know it.
His attention should be reversed, 30 yards on the receiver, last 10 yards to turn and track the ball. (7 points)

That is BASIC NFL pass coverage.

Amos...20 yard TD run by Fournette. Completely whiffed on attempted tackle.
They may have scored anyway as it was 1st and 10.

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 01:14 pm

Players have to make the plays. Smart players make the big plays in the big games. I really see zero need to bring Redmond back on board.

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 06:23 pm

Coaches put the payers in positions to make plays. Personally, I’m fine with Adams and Jones, and both of those didn’t live up to that old aphorism on the day.

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Guam's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:24 am

I expect the Packers to draft an RT in the first three rounds. This draft is deep in offensive linemen and the Pack needs an RT, not an LT, so it wouldn't surprise me if the Packers waited until round two or three to fill this need. And don't underestimate the value of Marcedes Lewis lining up next to a young RT - that will provide a great deal of security as the young tackle develops.

As much as the Packers will miss two interior starters from game one of last season (Linsley and Taylor), they will be fine with Jenkins, Patrick, Runyon, Stepaniak and Hanson manning the interior OL positions.

Gute anticipated having to replace a couple of interior starters last year and drafted accordingly in the 2020 draft. The only flaw in Gute's plan was Bahk's injury. A major loss to be sure, but not a permanent one and when he returns the Packers OL will be very solid again.

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:11 am

He could draft two OLine in the first four picks. The RT and a center/guard option in round four, if he holds all his chips.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:21 pm

Perhaps so. 6th rounders aren't sure things. There weren't too many enticing OTs left in the last draft. Robert Hunt went at 39 and while he played OT okay he probably should have been allowed to play OG where he was projected to move to. Damien Lewis at 69 looks like a long-time starting OG in the NFL.

This draft is loaded with OTs, some of whom might need at least a little time.

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Matt Gonzales's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:29 am

Great article, Paul. This whole situation just really reinforces what a gem Jenkins turned out to be as a guy that seems to be able to play well anywhere on the line. Depending on how the year shakes out I wouldn't be too surprised if they find he would be most valuable as either our permanent RT or C if they feel better about Patrick or Turner in an interior spot.

You didn't mention it in your article, but C actually feels like a possibility for him since he's got a bit of a nasty streak as a blocker, and that goes well with Dillon as an inside power runner.

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blacke00's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:29 am

If you really think about there is only two positions that need to be addressed immediately and those are the OL (tackle both sides) and the DL( nose tackle or end). Glaring weaknesses, both at starting positions and backup exist. That's where the immediate attention needs to be directed.
My curiosity is with Yosh Nijman. Why is he on the roster?This guy has been on the team with few if any snaps for 2 years! How long does it take for a player to develop? Well...this must be the year. My suspicion is that they expect him to make a serious play for a major position on the team. he has been used to back up on the left side under mope up conditions, but now with Bakh down Nijman will get his chance to compete for LT.
Runyan and Stepaniak will be competing for the right guard position. Turner will play RT and one of the future "draftees" take over eventually this year or next.
That leaves the DL....Whata mess.....Multiple picks...don't be surprised.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:25 pm

So...you're comfortable with Kevin King as your starting right cornerback (instead of addressing that position in the draft)?

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dobber's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:22 am

Until the draft--comfortable or not--it's him or Josh Jackson at this point.

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 11:38 am

I’m confident neither will play a down before the draft, so that’s ok with me till then.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 04:56 pm

"If you really think about there is only two positions that need to be addressed immediately and those are the OL (tackle both sides) and the DL( nose tackle or end). Glaring weaknesses," - blacke00
*************
I meant...in the draft.

I'll designate that in the future so there is no confusion.

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dobber's picture

April 03, 2021 at 09:54 am

Just keep those goalposts moving...

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PeteK's picture

April 02, 2021 at 11:13 am

Only as the 3rd nickel CB which is like a starter because teams are in nickel so often.

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:27 pm

Good luck with asking King to cover a slot receiver.

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PeteK's picture

April 02, 2021 at 03:55 pm

King is better than Sullivan. ahhh slightly

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:28 pm

IDK about in the slot.

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PF4L's picture

April 03, 2021 at 04:44 pm

That may or may not be true PeteK, but the interesting part of this when comparing the 2 players is.....

Chandon Sullivan was an UDFA.

I also wouldn't be so surprised if Sullivan was better in the slot. King gets juked way too easily at the line of scrimmage. Been that way since his first game.

That is probably why King plays so far off the receiver, that way he might still get beat, but it takes longer :)

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:25 am

We'll see if Nijman survives final cut-downs.

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PatrickGB's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:46 pm

I think that Nijman has the “looks like Tarzan, plays like Jane” reputation. The coaching staff is trying to get him coached and trained up to be an adequate backup. Besides, he is cheap.

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 01:10 pm

They will draft a guy to replace him. He had his prove it year last season.

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 06:21 pm

Actually, he played like a couple of Tarzans in college. The issue was that he played with the amount of technique one might expect of a player who had spent his entire life away from the rest of mankind. Has he learned?

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PF4L's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:10 pm

PatrickGB.....

Reminds me of The Sam Barrington and Datone Jones Syndrome

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Gman1976's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:31 pm

I suspect it’s “fish or cut bait” time with Nijman.

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 11:41 am

I am less concerned at this point than some. Stepaniak looked good coming out (as effectively a red shirt pick). Runyon was serviceable as a rookie. We are OK at tackle without relying on Nijman (who may or may not be a real prospect) even without Bakh for regular season purposes. I don’t see Hanson starting, so we have depth there.

The problem is depth and the future. I can see us drafting a guard again later, the team has apparently been keeping an eye on veteran centers, which would mean Patrick could return as guard. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if we draft a tackle to develop or sign an older vet in the summer (similar concept to Wagner) for depth. I also don’t rule out bringing back Taylor in the summer either.

As a result, I could possibly see a late round guard type (unless they really like Braden) and a tackle prospect that they think they can develop. That could be early if one falls that they really like, but I would not be shocked if it wasn’t.

I think a lot of this is driven by Tampa. I think the challenge there is as much on LaFleur, who really put the line in a bad spot with his calling. There is always the chance that Wagner will decide not to retire based on his struggles with his knee. I’d be happy with bringing him back to play less snaps as a true back up if so.

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Turophile's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:46 am

Looking at the draft to improve at tackle, Teven Jenkins is probably gone by pick 29 (but never discount Gute moving up in the draft for him). Cosmi has a good chance of being available, if the coaches think they can get him to play less upright (he's 6'7").

Radunz and Mayfield may or may not be around for their 2nd rounder if they stay put at #62, but Christensen is probably there. In round three there is Little and Hudson as possible options. In four it's possible D'Ante Smith is there, though if the Packers wait that long to get a tackle they will probably be forced to move up to make sure they get him.

In short, OT is so loaded this year there are many different ways to get a decent tackle and if you miss out in round 1, then try in round 2, 3, or maybe even 4. Most years just aren't this good for that position and if the Packers are willing to move around a bit (and I'm sure they will be) they can grab a talented guy somewhere.

While many of the tackles I mentioned may end up good players, it would be unwise to expect too much in their rookie season - the Packers may NEED help straight away, but they will be lucky to get more than a warm body this year. Despite that, it always pays dividends to have a good O line, so investment there is seldom wasted (just pick Elgtons rather than Jasons).

Knowing how thoroughly Gute confounds our expectations in the draft, I wouldn't be surprised to see him draft C Creed Humphrey in round one, or Meinerz in two, just to mess with our heads.

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:22 am

He could go OT in round one and bag a guy like Trey Smith in round two and fill in two big holes. When he brought King back on board, he probably thought he would not be able to move up far enough the bag one of the premier CBs. Newsome still is an injury worry.

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dobber's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:50 am

Now that the Packers have had a chance to see what they have in Hanson, it's more than possible that they invest in a "plug-and-play" C in this draft if they don't see him as a guy who can suck up significant snaps if called on. When they took Jenkins, I figured he was the heir apparent to Linsley at C, but I think his versatility makes him too valuable to be the primary C where you'd want more continuity. Their depth at G (or perceived depth) means that they can move Jenkins around and put a better player on the field at G than whomever their backup C would be (without investing there). It also likely means less juggling of the lineup if there's an in-game injury (e.g. imagine Jenkins goes from C --> RT, Patrick goes from RG --> C, Insert reserve G vs. Jenkins goes from LG -->RT, Insert reserve G).

....not to mention you can likely get a C who can play now in round 2 or 3 (or even 4 in a deep OL draft), whereas a T will likely merit a round 1-2 pick.

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LambeauPlain's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:17 am

I was thrilled when Gutey took Jenks and I looked at his college video. The numerous plays I watched showed him to be a stonewall of a pass blocker and and quick, agile, up the field run blocker...often blocking two guys on one play. I was confident he would be a starter as a rookie.

If Gutey finds a similar talent at T in round 1, several questions can be addressed on the O line.

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CheesyTex's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:59 am

Right on. It's not likely that they will find a Jenkins clone, but a "plug-and-play" G/T would really help.

Nijman coming through would obviously be huge. LT's are so hard to come by and raw talent is worth waiting for, but with Bak likely out this needs to be "now-or-never" time for Yosh.

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LambeauPlain's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:50 am

While DL, CB, ILB and WR are obvious needs, Paul clearly identified why OL needs to be the first position addressed in the draft.

Perhaps Runyan will quickly emerge as a game one starter, Stepaniak was a solid college player but has injury questions and is untested. Baht might not be ready to go. And players on the OL do get injured.

Drafting the best available OT at 29 in a deep tackle class makes tremendous sense to provide insurance for the highest scoring NFL offense. I would also bring back Lane Taylor for interior line insurance if his knee is healing on schedule.

With Rodgers playing at such a high level in ML's O, if I were Gutey I would be drafting an O lineman in one of the first three rounds every year.

My view of draft priority is OT, DL, ILB, CB, WR in that order then best available players for depth thereafter.

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dobber's picture

April 02, 2021 at 08:54 am

"With Rodgers playing at such a high level in ML's O, if I were Gutey I would be drafting an O lineman in one of the first three rounds every year."

I don't even think you need the Rodgers part of this statement. You have 8 OL active for game day every week. It's not like WR, where you have 5-ish active every week, but you can game plan around an injury by emphasizing the run game or TEs. You can't de-emphasize the OL...like DB these are positions that need to be serviced in every draft.

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Leatherhead's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:02 am

I predict:

Runyon will start the season at left tackle until Bakhtiari comes back. He started quite a few games in college at that spot, and he has the entire offseason to work on the position.

Turner will be the LG, to help Runyon .

Jenkins will be the center.

Patrick will be the RG.

An early draft pick will be the RT. I like Leatherwood, but others would work just as well.

This way, we don’t have to shuffle the line when Bakhtiari returns. We can spend the entire offseason working as a unit. The middle of the line, with Turner, Jenkins, and Patrick is strong. When Bakhtiari returns, the left side is strong, and the right guy at right tackle solidifies the right side. Runyon can focus on one position.

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dobber's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:00 am

That's an interesting take...I know you've posted something similar before. I might argue that you'd rather be strong up the middle, and that if they put Runyan outside, they'd be better served to support him with Jenkins next to him and put Turner back at RT. That likely puts Patrick at C. At this point, given they've not done anything to service the OL, it's making that draft look more and more important. Stenavich will really be earning his money.

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Leatherhead's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:10 am

I think you want Jenkins at center because he’s our best interior lineman, and centers have more value than guard.

If Runyon needs help at tackle, you put vets like Turner and Lewis on both sides of him.

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 11:54 am

Centers have value primarily for their mind. In my view, whilst Jenkins can play center ( valuable), using him there long term would be a profound waste of his athletic ability. You just don’t play tackle capable athletes at center except in emergency.

As to Runyon, he was serviceable at guard: impressive for a rookie fill in, but he still needs to grow in to the position if he is going to play regularly. Stepaniak may in fact prove to be the better player. Jenkins to be the better tackle.

The point, however, is that we have plenty of options that look promising without accounting for Hanson or Nijman, even without Bakh. I expect them to add a tackle to develop and possibly another guard/Center later. Tackles will be Turner and Jenkins. The wild card may be a veteran C on a low cost deal if they don’t think Hanson has learned enough in this O to back up.

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PeteK's picture

April 02, 2021 at 11:03 am

Or Runyon at RT. Sure am glad we have Stenavich, great O line coaches are worth their weight in gold as he proved last season. I'm guessing Turner, Step, Jenkins Patrick, Runyon.

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PeteK's picture

April 02, 2021 at 09:02 am

Thankfully, RT is easier to find than LT. I think Step and Hanson are the wildcards because only the coaches know how ready they are. It's promising that Stepaniak was on the active roster later in the season. Some slight draft movement could be in order to draft a CB and RT. My belief is that a NG could be addressed in the 3rd round with maybe a slight move up, and is a greater need then DE. Our 3 OLB are lg enough to occasionally play DE , but not NG.

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Since'61's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:12 am

I would re-sign Veldheer if he is still available for a reasonable price. He could start at RT on day one and Turner can hold down the fort at LT until Bak returns.
This enables us to remain strong up in the interior with Jenkins at LG, Patrick at C and Runyon at RG. At least that is the way I would go, if possible until Bak returns to LT, move Turner to RT and leave the rest as is with Veldheer transitioning to depth at tackle for the rest of the season. Thanks, Since '61

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PeteK's picture

April 02, 2021 at 11:01 am

I really like the idea of getting a veteran to hold down the fort at RT and give a rookie time to develop. There are a few Ts still not signed and as time goes on their price drops. Wagner would be my choice as he knows the offense. However, it could be a moot point if Stepaniak is ready at G and Runyon at RT.

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Since'61's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:14 pm

Even if Stepaniak and Runyon are ready to go at RG and RT I would still prefer to have a veteran like Veldheer available as a backup in case of injuries. Thanks, Since '61

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Coldworld's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:31 pm

Veldheer two years ago would be nice to have. I’m not sure that still applies. A similar pick up and even Wagner as a back up if his knee doesn't seem as bad after rest would make sense. The packer’s interest is rumored to be a C in the veteran stakes though.

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jannes bjornson's picture

April 02, 2021 at 01:08 pm

Veldheer showed up at 245-250 lbs for his fill-in duty. I don't think this guy is committed to playing Pro Football any longer. They have plenty of picks to bag a couple Starters for the O line from this deep draft class. Remember Clifton and Tauscher played right off the bat for Larry Beightol. Talent over scrubs has to be the rule.

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nostradanus's picture

April 02, 2021 at 10:28 am

Gutey will grab one early and one mid and with a great O Line coach he can make lemonade out of lemons.

They be ok...

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frankthefork's picture

April 02, 2021 at 11:52 am

Bingo Nostra. OT is a must with one of the first 4 picks and one OG/C in the later rounds. Veldheer is a must sign LT for the first 6 games and back up for Turner; who is a JAG at RT. Boy that NFCCG was not a good showing for Wags or Turn.

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Since'61's picture

April 02, 2021 at 12:20 pm

Agree on the OL draft picks. A team can never have enough of the big bodies somewhere on the OL depth chart.

Wags and Turner were just outplayed in the NFCCG. More running plays during the 2nd half may have helped slow down the Bucs pass rush. Although I think the Bucs believe the speed of their LBs can at least contain the ground game while their DLs go all in on the pass rush. The Bucs defense was just very well coached, very prepared and very disciplined for the NFCCG. Thanks, Since '61

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dobber's picture

April 02, 2021 at 03:40 pm

"Wags and Turner were just outplayed in the NFCCG."

I think Shaq Barrett just sacked ARod again...

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PackEyedOptimist's picture

April 02, 2021 at 05:11 pm

Paul, (and all of you), I'd like you to take a step back and consider another possibility: Draft Creed Humphrey at 29. Now normally, I wouldn't suggest spending a first-round pick on a center, but there are several reasons I think this is an EXCELLENT plan this year. First of all, Humphrey may be the best OL in this draft, he almost certainly has the "highest floor." He is almost certainly going to be a Pro-Bowl player for most of his career; he is an outstanding blocker for both run AND pass, and he is predicted to go right around 29. Taking him as a plug-and-play "sure thing" means the Packers start (in my opinion) Jenkins at LT, Runyon at LG, Humphrey at C, Turner at RT and the best of Patrick/Stepaniak/Braden at RG. That line might be as good as last year's great line, and it allows Jenkins to remain a flexible player who moves over when Bakhtiari returns.
Secondly, we get a quality starter instead of a fingers-crossed OT. Humphrey is WAY more a sure thing than any of the OTs after the first one or two, I'd argue he's more of a sure thing than ANY of this year's other OL.

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CoachDino's picture

April 02, 2021 at 06:33 pm

This OL is a possible disaster. yes Rodgers and the scheme are centered on early release but if not, Rodgers is no longer fleet of foot. He still has great pocket footwork to add time but the last few years he has certainly showed some heavier legs when moving laterally looking to throw.

LT- Jenkin (He's awesome but at C and G in College or Pros)
RG - Step... thats crazy. he was a late round pick, with few evaluators seeing him as an NFL starter, that hasn't even played a down in the NFL
C- Patrick - A solid IOL depth pc and a guy you can get by with as a starter not good and hoping for AVG
Runyan - see step but did get some NFL snaps and though he didn't play well he didn't flop
RT - Turner - 2 years ago the worst OL on the team, looked OK at RT but no better than AVG.

That is a terrible OL. It is the only unit that will not be as good or better than last year. Hence the biggest weakness.

Bak back makes it avg.

Draft a starting RT that can play LT if Bak gets hurt or after his rookie contract. Then add a C/G in 3-5th rounds if quality available.

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