Green Bay Packers Free Agency: Ranking UDFA Signings by Potential Playing Time
When the doors opened for undrafted free agency to begin, the Packers were among the first making headlines.
The rumors and agreements started yesterday. Ted Thompson had his list planned out and knew who he was going after.
Though Green Bay is widely considered one of the most complete teams in the NFL, there are a few holes that might be able to be filled by undrafted free agents.
There will be plenty of UDFAs for Mike McCarthy to test out, and a few will make the team. With luck, they'll also get some playing time.
Note: Different sources report different things. I have compiled a list based on many sources and sorted through which ones seem to be correct. If I miss one, let me know in the comments section.
Won't Make the Cut
Jon Hoese, FB, Minnesota: Though Hoese has an inspirational story, the Packers likely will have to cut one of their current fullbacks, not add another one.
Vic So'oto, LB, BYU: Lack of size means So'oto would make a transition to full-time linebacker. Coming off an injury won't bode well for him.
Jamari Lattimore, LB, Middle Tennessee State: His 11.5 sacks would be impressive, had he weighed 25 pounds more than his current 226. Too undersized to make a loaded LB squad.
Diondre Borel, QB/WR, Utah State: Borel is too inconsistent to be a backup QB. He will have to transfer to WR to hope of getting a spot on the roster.
M.D. Jennings, DB, Arkansas State: Did produce well last year, but that's mainly due to inferior competition. If he does make it, he'll need to put on some weight.
Ray Dominguez, OL, Arkansas: Career backup is what Dominguez is facing if he wants to continue his NFL career. His main attribute is size, but count on him getting cut.
Outsider Chance or Practice Squad Member
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Tori Gurley, WR, South Carolina: Gurley has some of the surest hands of the entire draft. He has good size but competition from other WR's may force him out.
Peanut Joseph, LB, Temple: Joseph drew interest from a couple other teams. However, last year's season-ending injury might scare off Green Bay.
Anthony Bratton, S, Delaware: One of the first moves the Packers made was signing Bratton. He may be able to make the practice squad.
Sampson Genus, C, USF: Genus has to have one of the coolest names on this list. Named to the All-Big East team, Genus' work ethic gives him a shot to take a spot.
Outsiders Chance or Practice Squad Member (Part 2)
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Brandon Saine, RB, Ohio State: Much bigger things were expected out of Saine after his 2009 campaign. A change-of-pace back, Saine would have to sit behind Grant, Starks and Green if he gets at roster spot.
Theo Sherman, OL, JMU: Sherman is a small school prospect who will likely kick in to a guard spot given that his lack of strength doesn't get him cut.
Brandian Ross, DB, Youngstown State: Ross is a versatile DB who has started at both safety and cornerback. The Packers currently have two excellent UDFA CB's on their roster, will they bring another one in?
Kerry Taylor, WR, ASU: Taylor was the best receiver on ASU's team. Let's see if that allows him to stay with the Packers.
Elisha Joseph, DT, Temple
Interestingly enough, if Elijah Joseph makes the team, it will be partly due to former teammate Muhammad Wilkerson and brother Peanut Joseph.
When teams came to watch Muhammad Wilkerson (selected in the first round by the Jets), it gave Joseph the exposure he needed.
The former Owl recorded 43 bench press reps at Temple's pro day, which would have been fourth best out of any player at the NFL Combine since 2006.
His brother Peanut Joseph was pursued by the Packers, but according to Courant.com, Green Bay decided to pursue Eli after his brother's suggestion.
Joseph emerged this year as a starter out of nowhere.
Due to his strength, size and late blooming, Eli Joseph could find himself as a practice squad member or rotational defensive lineman.
Shaky Smithson, WR/KR, Utah
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No, his real name is not Shaky. It's Antoine, so if you hear Antoine Smithson make the final cut to the defending Super Bowl champs' roster, don't be so surprised.
The Packers do not have a good return game, but a pair of rookies hope to change that.
Many figured Randall Cobb, a second-rounder, would return kicks for the Packers after he was drafted.
However, Cobb is also a valuable asset to the offense and shouldn't be the only return man due to a fear of injury.
That's where Smithson comes in.
Smithson led the nation in punt return average (19.1) and punt return yards (572). He also recorded two TD's.
Shaky won't see much, if any, time at receiver, but his return abilities might just allow him to sneak onto the roster.