Saturday, August 30, 2014
Green Bay Packers cut-down analysis
By Rob Demovsky
Most significant move: In the end, the Packers' decision to keep both backup quarterbacks -- Matt Flynn and Scott Tolzien -- suggests they felt the third quarterback was more important than, say, an extra cornerback, safety or running back. Among the surprise cuts were cornerback Jumal Rolle, safety Chris Banjo and perhaps the fact that they did not keep a fourth halfback. In Flynn, they have a backup who has proven he can win games as a fill-in starter. In Tolzien, they have a possible long-term backup with a higher upside than Flynn, who has lost out in competitions for starting jobs in Seattle and Oakland. The Packers have not said who will be the No. 2 quarterback on the depth chart, though it's likely Flynn.
Light in the backfield: The Packers have three halfbacks -- Eddie Lacy, James Starks and DuJuan Harris -- they feel good about. In fact, it might be their best halfback trio in a while, which is probably why they went light at this position. They also kept one fullback, John Kuhn, who can handle the ball-carrying duties in short-yardage and emergency situations. The previous three seasons, the Packers have kept at least five backs on their opening-day roster.
Undrafted rookies stick: As usual, the Packers found a couple of players worth keeping in the undrafted free-agent class. They kept two of them -- nose tackle Mike Pennel and outside linebacker Jayrone Elliott. Pennel, of Colorado State-Pueblo, could see some action at nose tackle after the loss of B.J. Raji to a season-ending torn biceps. Elliott, of Toledo, led the NFL in preseason sacks with five. By keeping Pennel and Elliott, the Packers have now had 15 undrafted rookies make their opening-day roster in the past five years.
What's next: The Packers have told many of the players they released Saturday to stay in town while they make decisions on their practice squad. Look for them to sign a practice-squad running back, perhaps rookie LaDarius Perkins, and a couple receivers after going light at both positions on the active roster. They also could still add players to their roster via waivers or free-agent signings. According to ESPN's Josina Anderson, the Packers will work out guard Adam Gettis, who was released by the Redskins. Gettis was a fifth-round pick in 2012.
Packers moves: Four players were placed on injured reserve: T Aaron Adams, LB Nate Palmer, TE Jake Stoneburner and DT Khyri Thornton. Thornton was the highest draft pick (third round) not to end up on the roster. The following players were released: Banjo, Perkins, Rolle WR Kevin Dorsey, LB Jake Doughty, T John Fullington, C Garth Gerhart, WR Alex Gillett, DT Carlos Gray, RB Michael Hill, LB Adrian Hubbard, G Jordan McCray, S Tanner Miller, TE Justin Perillo, DE Luther Robinson, T Jeremy Vujnovich, WR Myles White and CB Ryan White.