Alright final and probably shortest part. Part: 11 Special Teams!
You can find the previous parts in the archives.
Well I guess we will start with Mr. Automatic, Mason Crosby. He made 100% of his field goals last season, he did miss four extra points however. A couple of them were bad snaps. He is at a point in his career where as long as he is in range its a near automatic make. Mason doesn’t have the same leg strength he had when he came into the league, but his range remains solid. Crosby is 37 now, so he is nearing the end of the road. He probably has another three years in him. He has two years left on his contact. The Packers will probably move on from him at that time.
JK Scott…The so called weapon…who sometimes has loaded blanks. He has been so inconsistent. Its been three years and he hasn’t gotten much better. His net average of 37 is just not acceptable. Scott has a booming leg. He has all the potential in the world. He just hasn’t been able to find any consistency. The prevailing thought is it might be time to move on. JK is not expensive so I would not be surprised if they hang on to him and just bring in competition for him, not just a camp leg but definite competition.
The Packers did sign Ryan Winslow to a futures contract and he was on the practice squad for part of the season. He punted in two games for the Cardinals in 2019. He punted 6 times with a average punt of 48.5 which isn’t bad. Winslow does not have the leg that Scott has, but its not weak. His net average of 44.2 was not too good but, Its too small of a sample size to say anything definite, but it should give him a shot.
At the return position, the Packers were just bad this past season. They used a number of guys. Tyler Ervin, Tavon Austin, Josh Jackson, Darius Shepherd, Malik Taylor, and Jamal Williams were all tried at kick returner and or punt returner. None of them were any good. Josh Jackson was the best at punt return but only returned two punts and averaged a measly 6.5 a return. On kick returns Darius Shepped and Jamal Williams did the best. Both averaged only 20 yards a return. That is not good enough, also neither player is likely to be back. Outside of Malik Taylor, I do not think any of the guys who did it last season will be back.
Hunter Bradley the long snapper has been decent. His first season he was OK. second season he was a lot better. This past season he regressed a bit. He had a few bad snaps that cost the Packers some points on extra point kicks. I would not be surprised if they brought in some competition.
As was said earlier Mason Crosby is not going anywhere. They have JJ Molson on the practice squad, but he’s just not good enough. There is a good chance though that JK Scott is replaced by either Winslow or a undrafted free agent/late 7th round pick. Unless he completely turns it around, he is probably gone and will have to try and make it somewhere else. As far as returner goes, they need a replacement. They might give Ervin another chance on a vet minimum deal, but he has been injury prone and they may want to move on from him. I wouldn’t be surprised if they drafted a player who also has return ability. As far as punters go, there is only one draft quality punter this year, Drue Chrisman from Ohio State. He will probably go in the 6th-7th round range.
Thanks for reading. Go Pack Go!