Primer for Packers vs. Browns Game
The Packers are counting on rookie Jerel Worthy and B.J. Raji to anchor the defensive line. Image by Mark Hoffman
Preseason games are more about individual evaluations than team results, (quick, what was the score of last season's preseason game between Green Bay and Cleveland), and with that in mind, here's a few individuals to keep an eye on tomorrow night.
-#76 DL Mike Daniels. Didn't play in San Diego due to knee/groin injuries so this will be our first look at him under game conditions. Daniels has got busy hands and feet and a non-stop motor. He's one of those players who seems to have a natural talent for slipping blockers. His style has the potential to be disruptive, as in the opponents' backfield, and we'll see if that potential translates into perfomance vs. the Browns.
-#20 RB Alex Green. Not a total stranger as he played some last year before season-ending knee surgery. Ahead of schedule on his return to action but hasn't had many opportunities in "live" situations. (3 carries against the Chargers.) Due to all the Packers injuries at running back, he took the bulk of the reps this week, and the more you see him, the more you like him. Runs with enough balance to make sharp cuts and yet that body control doesn't seem to slow him down. He's still covering plenty of ground north and south.
-#29 CB Casey Hayward. Will start at right cornerback. Not a speed merchant but he's a football player. For a rookie, he sees the big picture. Really competes and more than willing to get physical with receivers.
-#34 S Anthony Levine. Former practice squad guy who's in the mix at safety along with M.D. Jennings and Jarron McMillian. After a quiet early camp, probably played the best of the three vs. San Diego. Whenever Charles Woodson moves up to cover in the slot, which is most of the time, the Packers will need another safety on the field. There's plenty of playing time to be earned by one of these young players.
-#84 TE D.J. Williams. Jermichael Finley may be #1, but the Packers use a ton of multiple tight end personnel packages. Who's next in the line? Williams, with his smooth route running and underrated blocking, could be that guy. He's shown a lot of ability and improvement this training camp.
-#54 G Greg Van Roten. Hardly played against the Chargers, can't tell you why. In practice, he's shown good technique not to mention good results. I've been as impressed with him as any of the young offensive linemen.