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Undrafted rookie Jaymes Brooks blocking at Virginia Tech
The struggles of the Packers’ offensive line have been well documented.
I previously discussed the problems Green Bay may have at stopping the rush with Marshall Newhouse stepping in at the starting left tackle spot. The Packers’ front office clearly recognized this as an area of need as they brought in six undrafted offensive linemen to compete during training camp, by far the most of any positional grouping.
The current crop of tackles and guards in Green Bay is not likely to change so it will be tough for many of these guys to make the current roster. What the team will be looking for is players who show the versatility to play multiple positions and someone it can rely on to back up Jeff Saturday at center.
Jaymes Brooks: 2-to-1
Brooks played right guard for Virginia Tech over the past few years and I felt that his play warranted a selection on draft day. He’s a great fit in Green Bay’s zone-blocking scheme with his quick feet and burst off the line. He’s does a great job of blocking on the move and could be a solid depth guy for the Packers.
He has also lined up at center in the past and can give Green Bay some much-needed depth behind Jeff Saturday.
Tommie Draheim: 6-to-1
Draheim earns the second spot amongst offensive linemen almost by default. There is so little depth at center in Green Bay behind Jeff Saturday that the Packers may be forced to keep Draheim on the roster if nobody else stands out.
Draheim is expected to transition to center after playing most his collegiate career at tackle.
Don Barclay: 7-to-1
The 2011 first-team Big East selection was a three-year starter at left tackle at West Virginia and specializes in his ability to protect the passer.
It’s a given that Newhouse, Derek Sherrod and Bryan Bulaga will make the roster and it’s more likely that seventh-round draft choice Andrew Datko takes the fourth tackle spot than the undrafted Barclay.
It would take a rash of injuries for Barclay to crack the roster.
Shea Allard: 20-to-1
Allard was a three-year starter at left tackle at Delaware before being signed as a tryout player by the Packers this year. He started for one of the best offensive lines in the country at the FCS level, joining Baltimore Ravens’ fourth-round pick Gino Gradkowski.
Allard was likely brought in simply as a training camp body and doesn’t have much upside to develop into more than that.
Here is a great story that details Allard’s journey to the Packers.
Grant Cook: 20-to-1
The Packers did pretty well by signing former Arkansas guard Ray Dominguez last year, so why not try to strike gold twice?
That’s exactly what the Packers are hoping for when they signed Cook as an undrafted free agent. Although less heralded, Cook is a big body at 6'4", 318 pounds and he has experience starting against SEC-level talent.
Despite those positives, the guard positions in Green Bay are already crowded and it’s unlikely Cook would ever see playing time. He’s very likely to be cut early in the process and has little to no chance of making the final roster.
Mike McCabe: 30-to-1
In mid-May the Packers signed offensive tackle McCabe out of Holy Cross. The first-team All-Patriot league selection is a big body and experienced with 36 career starts at Holy Cross, but it is unlikely he even earns a practice squad spot.
The Packers simply have too much invested in their other tackles to warrant keeping a player like McCabe on the roster.